ATLANTIC BEACH, Fla. – Even though it’s thousands of miles away, the city of Atlantic Beach is sending a big message of love to Ukraine as the war rages on.
“Stories of rape and torture and children without parents. It’s got to move you if you’re paying attention at all,” Atlantic Beach Mayor Ellen Glasser said.
The city is teaming up with Catholic Charities, which is expecting at least 100 Ukraine refugees, including many young families with children, to resettle in the Jacksonville area.
Catholic Charities will welcome the refugees and provide them with furnished apartments and supportive services until they get on their feet.
And you can help Atlantic Beach collect donations for the organization to prepare for their arrival.
The city is conducting a drive to collect items that will be used to furnish the apartments. Catholic Charities said it already has plenty of furniture and clothing so they don’t need any other donations of those things.
What they do need are new or gently used bathroom and kitchen supplies and small appliances, sheets and towels, baby supplies and car seats, cleaning supplies and other small items that anyone might need to set up an apartment starting from scratch.
Think about what you needed when you moved out on your own for the first time -- that’s what they’re looking for.
“They’re going to be like starting their lives over. This drive is to basically collect household supplies and the types of things you would get if you were moving to a new apartment,” Glasser said.
She said even small donations will make a difference for these families.
You can find a full supply list and more information at www.coab.us/ukraine.
They’re accepting new and “like-new” items.
“My message to people is don’t be silent to this type of hate. Do something. Do some good. Whether it’s a small thing like this, or whether you can do something bigger. You can donate money to the cause,” Glasser said.
And if you’d like to order new items, there is an “AB Loves Ukraine” Amazon link. The city said even if the items don’t arrive in time for the donation drive, you can drop them at City Hall and they will be transported to Catholic Charities at a later time.
The drive will take place this Friday and Saturday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. The collection truck will be in the parking lot at Jack Russell Park between city hall and the tennis courts.