A TEAM of Good Samaritans has returned to south Cumbria after a mercy mission to help those affected by the war in Ukraine.

Charnleys Homes and Gardens owner Marc Charnley and his team have returned from Poland after they used £3,500 of donated money to purchase much-needed supplies.

Marc first teamed up with Cater Kwik boss Matthew Mayvers, who travelled to Ukraine to deliver aid supplies by a truck earlier this year as part of the Furness Ukraine appeal.

After an outpouring of generosity from the public, the truck was full and ready for the 40-hour journey to the Ukraine/Poland border and to drop vital supplies off for refugees.

Now this time around the pair decided to take cash donations so they could buy the most needed supplies once they were there.

Marc said: “This time we received £3,500 donations from different organisations in the area. A colleague and I flew out there with all accommodations and flights paid for by ourselves.

“When we got there we hired a van and went around the sites where thousands pass through every day to get a hot meal. We would ask the volunteers helping what people needed and we were given a list and we would go and buy it with the donated money from wholesalers.

“It would be things like fruit, toothbrushes and we would put them into a pack for everyone.

“We would then go to the next station and carry out the same process. We would then go to an actual refugee centre where about 4,000 people are living now so we would take fruit and sweets for everyone. They were all very polite and well-mannered. They were so grateful for whatever they could get.”

Marc is appealing for more people in the area to do their bit and donate for when they will be returning in a month's time.

He said: “I would like to encourage everyone to raise any money they can for when we will be doing this all over again.

“We will try and generate more money, do raffles and different events at the garden centre and hopefully the community will help again and we can raise more money for next time.

“It’s a really good feeling seeing the kids smiling and hearing them be so thankful but it's also very sad to see the situation they are in. We can’t fix the problem but every little helps.”

Marc would like to thank the members of the community who helped raise donations for this appeal including:

  • Tony Davis and Mathew Mayvers
  • Longlands Caravan park
  • World Furniture and Mark
  • Newbarns Primary School
  • The Spectacle Lounge and TK Maxx
  • Daisy and Ollie from Pennington School