Kilsby woman offers 'spark of light in the darkness' to young victims of Ukraine conflict

Sophie collects gifts for refugees

Kilsby woman Sophie Abbott has collected and filled 100 backpacks for Ukrainian refugee children.

She said she has been ‘overwhelmed’ by people’s kindness and support with her appeal.

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Yesterday (Monday, May 16) her partner, Simon Gee, headed off on a mercy-mission to deliver the gifts to children staying at hotels in Poland.

Sophie with some of the dozens of parcels.

He was joined on a mini-bus by Andrea Brown to distribute the gifts.

Sophie said: “I wanted to give children a little spark of light during their current darkness. I wanted to show them that people out there do care.

“This is my way of sending a hug.”

Sophie started off with ten bags, filling them with treats, sweets, bubbles, games, colouring books, stationery, toothbrushes, brightly coloured shower gels and vibrant socks.

"I’m sending anything that's positive and provides a pastime for these children who have left their homes with limited items,” she added.

“I want these young people to feel worthy and have asked for new or bought items - but not used. I felt that the backpacks should be of something they know like animals, bees, dinosaurs, unicorn and cupcakes.”

Sophie is still collecting and is appealing for help with aid.

“My partner is the co-founder of Coventry Supporting Ukraine,” she said.

"He has already made two trips to the Ukraine boarder; one trip delivering donated aid that we collected and the second time was to deliver a support vehicle.

"He happily agreed to do the same with the backpacks to ensure they get to the children.”

Collections have also taken place in Braunston, co-ordinated by Heath Walton.

Sophie said: “People in Daventry and the surrounding villages have been so supportive.

"I'm merely a co-ordinater the public are the team and I can't thank them enough for their generosity and support.”

If you would like to donate to the appeal, message Sophie Abbott on Facebook.

For help spreading the message of your appeal, email [email protected]

Around three million refugees are now in Poland. This is the number of people who have crossed from Ukraine into Poland since the war began on February 24 this year.