This upcoming weekend, join in a community effort to help raise money and provide indispensable relief for the people of Ukraine. On Saturday, April 30, volunteers from around the Hudson Valley community will come together for the Hudson Valley Ukrainian Relief Benefit taking place from 3:30 to 7:30 p.m. at Novellas Restaurant in New Paltz.
“We invite you to come and join us for an afternoon of fellowship and conversation as we raise funds for those who have been so deeply affected,” a flier for the event states.
The event will feature six performers known locally and internationally, including Heather Christian, an award-winning off Broadway producer and song-writer as well as a Ukrainian dance ensemble. There will also be food provided by local food trucks and bakeries. Attendees can bid on art, jewelry and crafts created in the Hudson Valley as well as authentic pieces and embroidered blankets from Ukraine. The main fundraiser of the evening will be a silent auction with over 100 items that have been donated from individuals from around the Hudson Valley. The items consist of smaller items that college students would be able to bet on to larger big ticket items that have the potential to raise over hundreds of dollars for the cause.
The event was organized by Hudson Valley-based therapist, Pierette Farber LMHC, who was inspired by the words of some of her clients who wanted to find a way to help the people of Ukraine.
“The week after the invasion, I had a number of clients coming in talking about how hopeless they felt about not being able to do something so devastating in the world,” Farber stated. “I wanted to do something to both benefit Ukraine, that was the main focus, but also to help create community and for people to feel a sense of purpose and an ability to do something.”
What began as Farber reaching out to friends and family for help has expanded into an entire community coming together to produce a fully-fledged benefit event.
“As soon as we started putting posters up, people started contacting me. It was really just a lot of networking which every day, tears start coming to my eyes, it’s just amazing the beautiful community outreach that’s happening every day,” she said. “Every day someone calls and says, ‘Can I do something? What can I do? How can I donate?”
An important part of the event for Farber was ensuring that Ukrainian speakers, artists and performers would be able to be featured at the event.
“We’re trying to be as inclusive as possible and really expose people to Ukrainian culture as well,” Farber stated.
The Ukrainian Women’s League of Kerhonkson have donated a collection of Ukrainian items for the silent auction including vintage embroidered pillows and jewelry. There will also be two Ukrainian tortes, a special type of multilayered cake. There will also be a woman with a display of 60 Ukrainian pysanky, which are Ukrainian Easter eggs, who will talk about the culture and folklore associated with pysanky and lead demonstrations on how they are made.
Present at the event will be Ukrainian speakers from RAZOM, a 501c3 non-profit organization based in New York that has been working since 2014 to help the people of Ukraine and help build a better future for the nation. Razom means “together” in Ukraine and the organization believes in bringing a community of volunteers together to create a tangible impact.
All funds raised at the event will be directly donated to RAZOM. One of the projects RAZOM has been working onto help provide relief to the Ukrainian people is to deliver 60 pallets of aid to Ukraine each week. The organization delivers “tactical medicine items, hospital supplies, and tech enabled emergency response supplies that facilitate the delivery of this aid,” according to their website razomforukraine.org
Help raise money for this organization and help provide relief for the people of Ukraine by attending the Hudson Valley Ukrainian Relief Benefit this Saturday, April 30. Tickets can be reserved for $15 on the Hudson Valley Ukrainian Relief eventbrite or can be purchased for $20 at the door.