Local realtor and Ukrainian native, Irina Ahdoot, is uniting Arizonians to help Ukraine in its time of need.
When Russia invaded Ukraine on February 25, 2022, Irina’s home country, she was heartbroken. Three days later she along with the help of her husband founded the charity United 4 Ukraine, to provide humanitarian efforts to refugees who have been displaced in Ukraine.
After the war started Irina met people from Arizona on social media and started to work together.
It is how she met Vik Morozov, which led them to put their resources together and fundraising for the charity. With his connections in Poland and her connections in Germany they began to send funds to volunteers to pick up necessities and distribute them to orphanages, and assisted living facilites, which are funded by the government but were forgotten about when the war began.
Irina wanted to do more than make a donation to the Red Cross, which handles donations differently and cannot always reach the refugees located at the borders or the smaller cities after by the war due not being able to cross security posts. Whereas charity volunteers are able to get thru these locations allowing them to purchase goods, medications, and food, and deliver to people’s homes. Irina shared that the volunteers are risking their lives providing aid to refugees, an act that doesn’t go unnoticed. When the necessities cannot be found in Ukraine, they will get them from Poland and send them to Ukraine. These items, such as food, water, toothpaste, and medicine are delivered to the refugees on a constant non-stop basis.
The supports is not only financial, for the refugees, it is also emotional, Irina explained.
The funding does go a long way, a lot of people are helping, however this is just the beginning. Many families are displaced, many women’s husband have died in the war, they are not only needing help now, but will continue to do so in the future. Mother’s and children are a major demographic which need will need emotional support and United 4 Ukraine wants to continue to provide that support.
Irina arrived in Arizona 25 years ago, she last visited Ukraine 3 years ago.
She mentioned that something was calling her to visit, and she is glad she had the opportunity to “see Ukraine in beauty” and now she is sure it will break her heart to see her beautiful Ukraine as it is now. She also shared that she is thankful for her husband’s support as it has brought them closer together, when asked on her reflection of coming together with husband with the foundation of the United 4 Ukraine. “We are a great team in life and in business, but now are an amazing couple with the charity and helping people. It’s amazing.”
Her gratitude goes to Vik Morozov, who has been a huge help sharing sources and with fundraising for the charity. She also expresses a special thanks to he landscaper Raul Rivera, for his tremendous donation and sharing his story with her, as he knows what it is to not have a home and go without food or water. Last but not least she is thankful to her fellow Arizonians, who many without asking have helped Ukraine. Irina is thankful for all the support.
United 4 Ukraine has raised over $325,000, reaching 13 percent of their $2,500,000 goal.
Irina’s cause started in the valley with the help of fellow Arizonians and now has reached multiple countries who have also provided assistance.
To donate and learn more about United 4 Ukraine visit their website at https://united4ukraine.com/
The website provides updates and videos about the charity and a how the funds are allocated. Sponsors and donors can also create teams and set a fundraising goal.
When all hope seems lost, it is the innate goodness in all humanity that reminds us all that we, as human beings, have an opportunity to truly make a difference.”
By Johanna Luna