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Local nonprofit aims to buy homes for war widows in Ukraine

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By Kiersten Nuñez

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    SALT LAKE CITY (KSL) — This week, a group of Utahns is launching a new effort to help those suffering in Ukraine.

The local nonprofit August Mission supports those who have been forced from their homes with nowhere to go. Now they will be buying homes for war widows and their young families.

For months, most of us in Utah have simply seen headlines, but Bruce Roberts sees the suffering in Ukraine first hand.

“You see the hospitals, some of the civilians and soldiers coming from the front and missing limbs, and you see babies and kids without parents,” said Roberts, CEO of August Mission. “You see old people in deplorable conditions with nobody. There’s nobody to care for them. It’s hard and it definitely pulls on your heartstrings.”

Week after week, the Utah nonprofit brings truckloads of supplies from Poland to Ukraine.

“We ended up in the town of Khmelnitsk. It’s right in the middle of Ukraine, and I’m located in central Ukraine with 250,000 people,” Roberts said.

Roberts said everywhere he turns, there’s someone in need of desperate help.

“The enormity of the problem seems overwhelming, and it does feel like a drop in the bucket, but the way you fill that bucket is one drop at a time,” Roberts explains.

The group has been in Ukraine since March delivering food and medical supplies. Now their new effort is to provide a home for war widows.

“Their homes have been destroyed and they’ve lost a husband at the battle, so now you have a family that has nowhere to go back to and, in effect, a single mother with no home,” Roberts said.

Roberts said you can buy a decent home for as little as $5,000. Funded by donations, they hope to purchase 10 homes in the next two months, with the first family getting their house this Tuesday.

“We can’t afford to house them all, but we’ll start filling the bucket one drop at a time and see where it leads us,” Roberts said.

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