We Stand With The People Of Ukraine As They Valiantly Defend Their Country
Updated: Mar 3, 2022
By Pru Goudie
It’s becoming increasingly more difficult to sit by and watch the alarming news coming out of Ukraine this week as they brave death and destruction against Russian terror, not withstanding a 40 mile military convoy nearing Kyiv.
Image: Ukrainian National Flag - Shutterstock
Like everyone else around the world, I feel saddened and completely stunned, shocked and somewhat helpless that we are witnessing the unprovoked invasion of Ukraine, a European country that is exercising their sovereignty.
After such a challenging two-years with the COVID-19 pandemic experienced on a global scale how sad it is that once again plague and war walk hand in hand. But for a few, this is not the start to 2022 anyone thought they would be witnessing.
It is, however heartening to see how so many good citizens are rallying to help these devastated people fleeing their homes, their families, country and culture. None more than Prosperity, a local Ukrainian Restaurant & Cafe, which is run by a Ukrainian family based in Twickenham, Richmond Upon Thames.
Image: Prosperity Restaurant & Cafe, 59 York St, Twickenham TW1 3LP
Prosperity is one of a handful of locations across the capital co-ordinating the collection of emergency supplies to help both refugee families and the volunteer fighters. They will be taking a truck of supplies to the war-torn country.
Urgently needed items include Power banks (for charging phones), Large and medium size backpacks, Male socks, Camping mats, Sleeping bags, Protein bars / energy bars, First Aid items, Wound dressings, Painkillers, Nappies, Cold & flu remedies and Toiletries.
So, how is the UK travel trade responding to this crisis?
Kuoni Travel and specialist adventure tour operators Explore Worldwide and Exodus Travel have all issued a plea for the trade and customers to support the people of Ukraine and appealed for donations to the Ukrainian Red Cross Society.
Image: Kyiv Pechersk Lavra and surrounding buildings - Shutterstock
Explore also announced that they have taken all trips to Russia off sale until the end of the year and will not operate to the country until the situation is resolved. Explore staff are also working within their own communities and have compiled a blog with ideas of how we can all play our part in helping.
G Adventures has also pulled its Russia programme following a heartfelt plea from founder Bruce Poon Tip for ‘travel to unite and get behind a common message to end division in the world’.
Royal Caribbean International and Celebrity Cruises have been the latest cruise lines to scrap calls to St Petersburg, after MSC Cruises and Viking announced they had cancelled all 2022 departures of Russian river cruise itineraries and ceased operations in the country for the remainder of the year.
I’m sure many more travel organisations will follow, but for now there is one simple message; it is the people of Ukraine that are at the forefront of our minds, and the innocent people of Russia.
Pru Goudie, Founder