Editor joins mercy mission to take supplies to Ukrainian refugees

EDP editor David Powles and David Hale-

Eastern Daily Press Editor David Powles has joined a mercy mission from Norfolk to take much needed medical supplies and food to help the war refugees fleeing Ukraine to Poland.

David has joined two volunteers from his village in Hethersett, near Norwich, with a van load of emergency aid. He set off on Sunday afternoon and will be part of the team driving the 1,300 miles to the Poland/Ukraine border — arriving on Thursday.

As he left for the trip, he told Behind Local News: “Three weeks ago two friends in my village travelled to Poland with several van loads of aid, but mainly to try and do their bit to help find refuge for Ukrainians affected by the war.

“They helped 19 people on their first trip and since then one of them, Adam, has taken a sabbatical to head back, helping many dozens more.

“Over the last few weeks I’ve had a growing itch to join him and attempt to relay what is happening to Ukrainians to our readers.

“It’s our job as journalists to tell the stories of those being mistreated and to give a voice to the otherwise unheard and that’s what I hope to do over the next week.”

Writing on the EDP website, David, said:

“How many of us have followed the events in Ukraine over the last few months and felt powerless to do anything to help those millions of people affected?

“How many of us have thanked our lucky stars that we have not had to live through a period of conflict, not had to have our safety threatened and not had to fear for the lives of our loved ones?”

Adam Hale-Sutton, a 42-year-old father-of-two, from Little Melton is one of those people who decided to do something about it. He has spent the past three weeks travelling between Poland and his Norfolk home delivering aid but also helping the refugees to find a new home.

David said: “The bus is loaded with medial supplies and food, which we shall be distributing to those who need it at the town of Mydeka, on the border with Ukraine, which is where so many people have fled in search of a safe haven.”

“But more importantly, whilst in Mydeka, Adam, our companion Richard Knight, from Hertford, and small groups of others doing the same, will work together to try to get Ukranianis out of the refugee camps and into more permanent homes.”

David told BLN: “There’s no bigger story in the world at this moment in time and whilst the war may not directly impact our readers, so many have been moved by the plight of the Ukrainian people and will, I hope, be interested in the stories we uncover whilst there.

“Personally, this feels like it could be the biggest story of our generation and I have been desperate to do what little I can to help. Increasingly this was something I felt I had to do, if I could find a way to make it happen.

“I’m very grateful to have the support of my family, my boss and my team, all of whom agreed to pick up my work whilst I am away.”

Anyone wishing to donate to the trip can do so here.

  • In 2022, Behind Local News aims to celebrate local journalism in all its forms through our 365 Acts of Local Journalism Project. Lets us know what you think should be included. You can email us here or contact us via Twitter on BehindLocalNews or on Facebook here.

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