NOBLESVILLE, Ind. — As the war in Ukraine surpasses 100 days, Indiana nonprofits say the need for help is as big as ever.
In a Noblesville church, the nonprofit Mission to Ukraine has continued to pack up supplies like food, diapers and ointment to be sent overseas.
“It’s 100 days on the calendar but it really just feels like one long, never-ending nightmare,” said Nastia Kasaanchuk, a volunteer with the organization who has lived in Ukraine almost all her life.
Kasaanchuk, who is briefly visiting Indiana before returning to Europe, said the need for aid is getting “bigger” as the war drags on.
“Providing lots of food – that is obviously becoming really scarce,” she explained. “And just the opportunity to go to the store, not every family is able to do that.”
So far, Mission to Ukraine has sent 87 tons of aid overseas, including much-needed non-perishable food, according to executive director Steve Boles.
Boles acknowledges the demand for aid remains high, though donation drop-offs have dropped off since the first few weeks of the war.
“We try to emphasize that we’re here for the long haul,” Boles said. “We’ve been here for 25 years already, and we plan to be there for the next 25 years and those needs will continue.”
At the Statehouse, the response has been sanctions. After approval from lawmakers earlier this year, the ban on Russian firms from obtaining property in Indiana begins July 1.
The Indiana Public Retirement System pulled $147 million out of Russian-related investments.
The agency declined our request for an interview, but a spokesperson said any financial losses have been offset by other investments.
Experts say the sanctions have symbolic importance.
“The Ukrainians notice these things,” said Robert Kravchuk, a public affairs professor at Indiana University. “They understand that the West is doing when it can short of provoking the Russians into an all out war.”
Powdered milk, diapers, flour, vitamins and medicine are some of the items most in need in Ukraine, Boles said. If you’re interested in donating to support Mission to Ukraine’s efforts, click here.