‘What can we do but try?’: more aid on its way to help humans and horses in Ukraine

  • The equestrian world is continuing to provide aid for humans and horses in Ukraine, with more organisations and businesses getting involved.

    The veterinary profession, equestrian retailers, and a number of different groups in the horse world are collecting donations as supplies continue to be transported to Ukraine.

    British Veterinary Professionals for Ukraine, founded by UK vet and second-generation Ukrainian Nina Babchuck, is providing direct support for medics in the country and is calling for donations of medical supplies and financial donations. The group has worked with the Ukrainian Medical Association to establish direct links with human and veterinary surgeons working in the war zone to send supplies where they are needed most. Three ambulances with supplies will leave tomorrow (15 March) to Ukraine, with more deliveries planned.

    “People just want to do something tangible. We see horrific scenes on the television every day and when we hear from vets and medics on the ground that they don’t have the supplies they need, what can we do but try and get those supplies to them?,” said Nina.

    “We have been collecting physical donations from across the UK and are now establishing ways people can buy medical supplies in the UK that we take out to Ukraine. I am humbled by the support we have been receiving from vets in the UK, but there is so much more that they need out there.”

    Rutland-based equine vet Till Hoermann of Hoermann Equine recently completed a 2,500-mile round trip to take vet supplies donated by his practice and other equine vets to Ukraine.

    “After listening to an interview with doctors from the Ukrainian Medical Association on Radio 5 live I realised a lot of the mobile veterinary equipment that we use out on the road may be useful for them so I started to make my plan,” he said.

    “Through other contacts we know exactly what they want and how to get it there. We have a warehouse just off the A1 that will act as a central collection hub and from there supplies will go into Ukraine via a distribution centre in Poland.”

    Medical supplies can be sent to British Veterinary Professionals for Ukraine via Hoermann Equine, and a list of what is needed is on the group’s Facebook page. Financial donations can also be made via the group’s Gofundme page.

    Retailer Redpost is working with Craig Harris of Horse Aid UK to arrange transport of essential equine supplies including feed, bedding and first-aid equipment, to Ukraine, with the first lorry leaving tomorrow.

    “Our main concern is getting the right feed and equipment out there; it’s vital that we prioritise space with every trip. The situation is changing daily; we can’t predict what will be needed most in the coming weeks and months,” said a Redpost spokesman.

    “We’ve set up a fast and easy way to support the crisis. This will help the Ukrainian equestrian community to receive the right resources at the right time.”

    Redpost customers can donate via the company’s website and Redpost will match the first £500 of donations. The spokesman said Bicton Arena has also agreed to donate £500 to the appeal, and the funds will be used to send the most needed supplies over the course of several deliveries.

    LeMieux is collecting donations, which will go to the British Equestrians for Ukraine appeal, set up last week by British Equestrian, the British Horse Society, British Equestrian Trade Association and World Horse Welfare. Customers can tick a donation box when they check out at www.horsehealth.co.uk and the company will double all donations made via the website.

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