Hands On Global heading to Ukraine border

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Posted at 10:42 AM, Mar 09, 2022

HELENA — Additional help from Montana is headed to Europe as the Russia-Ukraine conflict continues.

Hands On Global Executive Director Valerie Hellermann will be heading to the Ukrainian-Romanian border to offer basic healthcare to refugees after assembling an international team of healthcare professionals.

Hellermann’s team of healthcare professionals consists of doctors, nurses, and an EMT/midwife from throughout the world. She received notice from a Syrian colleague at the border and says she knew it was time to assemble a team to set up a clinic where they could help refugees and continue to assess the situation.

“I can tell you from years of refugee work, it's the smaller nonprofits or NGOs that are there with their sleeves rolled up, and Hands On Global is one of those,” says Hellermann.

Hellermann will be there from March 9 through at least March 31. But they have enough team members who are scheduled to be at the border through May if need be.

Hellermann is bringing a couple of bags full of supplies such as thermometers, hydration salts, pill cutters, ace bandages, pediatric meds, splints, and more of the sort. Other colleagues are bringing along medications such as diabetes and heart medication.

Hellermann says that this work is rewarding in that you get to directly help those who are in a dire situation. And that just being there for someone’s basic human needs can mean a whole lot to refugees.

“When you're on the ground and you come back and you can tell the story of the person you met and their story, that's what I think moves people's hearts to hopefully end the war. I mean, most of us want to end the war, there's no doubt about that. But what do we do? I don't know what we do. I don't know. Years of this work, I still don't know what we do other than show up. I've been told by refugees that we've given them hope for one more day and that's a lot when you live day to day,” says Hellermann.

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