Vernon donors step up to aid Ukraine refugee family

Support efforts include donation of mini-van and $1,800 for family needs

Vernon residents have protested in support of Ukraine's battle to retain its independence from Russia and donated to help Ukrainian refugees moving to the North Okanagan to start new lives. (File photo)

The spirit of North Okanagan generosity has responded to a call for assistance for a Ukrainian refugee family moving to Vernon.

Torrie Silverthorn, organizing the fundraiser, said a mini van has been donated to the family with a GoFundMe effort launched to “fill the van” with gas cards, grocery cards and a few comfort items like toiletries, toys and treats.

The goal was to raise $1,000, and more than $1,800 from 18 donations had been raised as of Monday, July 18.

“Vernon is a tremendously generous community and this little fundraiser was no exception,” said Silverthorn.

“I love out little city and its big heart.”

Silverthorn acknowledged the vehicle is just one small piece of the bigger puzzle in supporting this new family’s arrival in the Okanagan.

“Trinity United Church is coordinating housing and several other aspects of supporting this family,” Silverthorn said in an email to The Morning Star.

“I encourage anyone looking to donate to the Ukrainian refugee family or support their transition into our community to contact Trinity United Church at 250-545-0797 or email”

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