Ukrainian refugees are recovering in the Mission East-supported center

Ukrainians flee shelling and are received by Hungarian volunteers who work 20 hours a day to provide them with food, medicine and a place to rest. Betina Gollander-Jensen reports from a Mission East-supported center where the volunteers’ mood is high.

Mission East Managing Director Betina Gollander-Jensen is now at the Ukrainian-Hungarian border, where refugees are being given food, health checks and a place to sleep in a school that has been transformed into a refugee center.

It is a local partner organization HBAid, that is responsible for the relief work - specifically 14 volunteers who serve as many as 300 refugees in 24 hour limbo on their way to acquaintances in Germany, the Czech Republic, Italy or other European countries.

Volunteer work 20 hours a day

- I am deeply impressed with the 14 volunteers who work 20 hours a day four days a week to help the Ukrainian refugees, says Betina Gollander-Jensen on a quite poor connection over Teams.

What is your impression?

- I'm here where two weeks ago there was an ordinary primary school in a small quiet village on the border with Ukraine. It has been transformed into a reception center, where they receive 300 refugees every day. The 14 volunteers cook for 300 people, they make sure they have a place to sleep and there is a doctor available for health checks and medication.

It really is a transit center, she says.

Here they are for 24 hours, where they can heal a little and get some rest before moving on to family and acquaintances in other countries.

Fleeing shelling every two hours

What is your impression of the people you meet?

- What strikes me is that some of them are quite sad and many are in a waiting position and sitting with their phones and talking to their relatives somewhere in Europe, where they are now on their way.

- Some I have spoken to are upset and some told me that they chose to flee because the air alarm sounded every two hours because they were under fire.

It is the Hungarian Baptist Aid (HBAid) that stands for the center, which Mission East supports.

Tomorrow Friday, the organization will drive across the border into Ukraine with a convoy of seven trucks of food.