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Nataliya Zasadko and her friends are on a mission to help more than 600 children who the ongoing war in Ukraine has orphaned.

Except for her husband and child, Zasadko’s family remains in Ukraine.

Her mother, who is a university professor there, has become an unlikely but essential on-ground logistical coordinator for refugee orphans fleeing occupied cities.

Zasadko and her friend Tetiana Kolcheva have organized a campaign to collect items for children at an orphanage in western Ukraine and an adoption center in Gorzów Wielkopolski, Poland.

She said donated items are being collected and placed into two large overseas shipping containers to make their way to those helping children.

The containers should arrive in Ukraine in early June.

There are two ways to donate for those who would like to help.

The easiest is to purchase needed items through Zasadkso’s Amazon Wish List.

Donors may also opt to purchase the requested items locally and drop them off though Saturday, April 30, at Kolcheva’s business, Summit Cleaning, 7985 Vance Dr. Arvada, CO, 80003.

Zasadko said the simplest of items can often have the greatest impact. Things like sunscreen, children’s baseball hats, eating utensils, unisex clothing, toothpaste toothbrushes, first aid kits, sealed packages of baby food, fruit snacks and over-the-counter medicine for allergies are needed most.

LED headlamps are especially helpful.

“They are needed for the volunteers at night,” she said. “This way, they can have two hands to carry the children.”

To access the Amazon Wish List: https://www.amazon.com/hz/wishlist/ls/EUTPJQ6KEXJH?ref_=wl_fv_le

Financial donations may be made through the website www.ukrainiansofcolorado.org. Please type “ORPHANS” in the comment section to help Zasadko’s specific cause.

To learn more about this local effort, contact Kolcheva at 303-886-2251.