Generous islanders hear about horrors of Ukraine war

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The horrors of the Russian invasion of Ukraine were brought home to Waiheke residents on Monday 20 March when Kiwi KARE (Kiwi Aid and Refugee Evacuation) founder Tenby Powell spoke at the Waiheke Bowling Club. More than 70 people attended the event, organised by fundraising group Waiheke Trucking for Ukraine, and about $13,000 was raised by auctioning virtual truck parts. More than $68,000 has now been raised, well over the initial of goal of $50,000 to buy a 10-tonne truck. 

Island residents Sir Graham Henry, Paul Dykzeul, Tony Taylor, David Bower, David Thompson, Terry Hume, Warren Lincoln and Brent Impey founded the fundraising group.

Brent opened the evening by describing how the group came to help Kiwi KARE. After exploring scenarios including relocating a Ukrainian refugee family to the island, they realised they would involve too much red tape. In January, Brent phoned Tenby, which kick-started the fundraising campaign. Tenby came to Waiheke and had a coffee with the group, describing his foundation’s work in the country Russia had invaded in late February 2022. He said a bigger truck would make aid distribution easier and safer. Waiheke Trucking for Ukraine was initiated that day. The group started a 10-week campaign to buy a truck and raise awareness of what Tenby describes as a horrific situation in Ukraine.

• Sarah Gloyer

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