Hungarian and Polish Businesses and ordinary citizens scramble to help Ukrainian Refugees

Many ordinary citizens, as well as businesses, have also joined the calls to provide aid. Businesses offer jobs and free accommodation. A car-sharing service, offered 1,000 of its 2,500 cars to volunteers to transport people in need at the Polish-Ukrainian border over the weekend. The appeal was so successful that all vehicles were booked after a few hours. According to social media, countless smaller businesses have also been helping their Ukrainian employees bring their family members to Poland and Hungary, offering them work and free accommodation.

Hungary has received more than 140,000 people from Ukraine in just seven days. All along the 135km (84-mile) frontier, volunteers from across the country have traveled to the border region to help with the impressive humanitarian effort. Overall more than 1.2 million people have crossed Ukraine’s western borders according to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), a number that is expected to grow in the coming days.

Impressive effort

Hungarian Interchurch Aid set up a 24-hour refugee support point on the Ukrainian side of the border at Beregsurány. The line of refugees trying to cross into Hungary at this crossing is kilometers long- thousands of Ukrainians forced to flee the war which has enveloped the nation of 44 million people. The support point was set up at Asztély, near the border crossing, in a heated pavilion, which will be supplemented with additional tents and mobile toilets in the coming days.

HIA is providing hot tea, sandwiches, refreshments, blankets, and basic hygiene items for refugees, including many elderly and children, who wait long hours to cross the border. In addition to the tangible help at the support point, HIA also helps those arriving with information in Hungarian and Ukrainian, including how those in need can get temporary accommodation in Hungary.

Local volunteers will also be involved in the operation of the support point. A good example of local co-operation is the baking of fresh bread in a local Serbian bakery from flour donated from Hungary, which HIA will offer to refugees.

Ukrainian War: Hungarian Red Cross Aid Arrives in Transcarpathia

An aid package of one ton of food by the Hungarian Red Cross arrived in Transcarpathia’s Beregszász (Berehove) and was received by the local Red Cross organization. The Red Cross aims to contribute to supplies for local residents, and the first package of mostly flour, sugar, cooking oil, and rice will be followed by a 24-ton shipment.

The Red Cross is also helping municipalities along the Hungary-Ukraine border with the operations of temporary shelters set up for Ukrainian refugees, with special regard to Záhony, Lónya, Beregsurány, and Tiszabecs. In addition, the organization has set up shelters of its own at Uszka and Barabás crossing stations, they said. Red Cross activists await refugees arriving from Ukraine at Budapest’s Nyugati railway station, offering them food, hot drinks, and information.

Portfolio.hu: This is how you can help Ukrainian refugees with food, accommodation and transportation

Refugees have been arriving at the Ukrainian-Hungarian border continuously since the outbreak of the war, as we reported in our video on Friday. Many organizations are looking for volunteers at the border in the home and are organizing fundraisers, summarizing where to go for help. Food, material donations, transportation, and accommodation are also expected in addition to monetary donations.

Migration Aid is looking for volunteers who can travel to the area for several days and are also looking for buses with a driver who can help with transportation from the border to the local train station or to Budapest. In addition, rechargeable fuel cards are collected so that they can board at the expense of transport assistants. They are also looking for accommodation near the border to accommodate volunteers as well as to accommodate Ukrainian refugees, not just near the border. This can be indicated by e-mail with the subject “offer of accommodation”, indicating the location, time of reception, and duration. Fluent in Russian and Ukrainian they are looking for translators and volunteers for the online organization and administration work. Donations in kind will not be accepted until what is needed is assessed at the border. They can be reached at info@migrationaid.org and their Facebook page can be found here.

The Budapest Bike Mafia organizes collections in Budapest, you can find out about the current locations and dates on our Facebook page. They are primarily waiting for material donations to be delivered to the venue: packaged, ready-made sandwiches, canned hot food, juices, insulating foils, blankets, sleeping bags, thermoses, baby care items, wet wipes, toiletries, camp beds.

Accommodation.hu would connect those fleeing from Ukraine who needs accommodation and the owners of the accommodation who are willing to receive people for free or at a discount. Szállás.hu contacted all its domestic partners and asked them in a letter to join their call. The accommodation agent will grant a commission exemption to the joining partners and a listing page of the places offered will be created soon. They are also looking forward to joining volunteer translators to help with the connection. The organization can also be contacted by phone (+36 30 344 2000) and e-mail (szallas@szallas.hu) for those looking for accommodation and those providing accommodation.

The Workforce Temporary Employment and Recruitment Company would help refugees to settle on the Ukrainian-Hungarian border: on the one hand, they will provide them with accommodation in their workers’ accommodation, and on the other hand, they will help them to find a job that matches their qualifications. Their own employees with Ukrainian citizenship also help their direct relatives with accommodation and personalized support in Hungary if they are forced to flee.

The Maltese Charity Service is asking for monetary donations, which began on Friday to receive refugees from the Ukrainian crisis and place them in rural institutions, writes hvg.hu. Their institution in Beregszász is also open to those seeking help.

Donations can also be made through monetary donations through the following organizations: Hungarian Red Cross, Protective Charity Association, Ecumenical Relief Organization, Hungarian Reformed Charity Service, UNICEF, UN Humanitarian Fund for Ukraine, Catholic Caritas, Krishna Believers.

The Greek Catholic Metropolis is launching a fundraiser, asking for food and other necessities. Physical donations are welcome in their parishes, but money can also be transferred to their account numbers. Donation information can be found here. The Diocese of Nyíregyháza of the Greek Catholic Church collects material donations, and those who wish to help can find information on this page.

The charity group of St. Anthony of Padua from the Diocese of Debrecen-Nyíregyháza, in cooperation with the Záhony municipality, is waiting for the volunteers to join, and they are also waiting for mattresses and other donations.

The Municipality of Debrecen and the Debrecen Charitable Body in the Auchan department store in Debrecen (Kishatár utca 7.) put out boxes for food, everyday toiletries, blankets, and pillows suitable for immediate consumption. At the concert of violinist Zoltán Mága on February 26, from 6 pm, there will be a fundraiser at the Reformed Great Church in Debrecen, which will be used to purchase food for immediate consumption, writes hvg.hu.

In addition, a number of Facebook groups have been set up for the offerings, such as Assistance (Ukraine, Transcarpathia), a group of nearly 56,000 people.

The local government of Budapest is also helping to provide accommodation and meals for almost two thousand fleeing people almost immediately. At the Budapest railway stations, several people have already asked for help from our staff, and their placement and care is in progress – read the announcement of the Budapest Municipality this morning.

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