Northlanders find new ways to help Ukrainian refugees

Northlanders find new ways to help Ukrainian refugees
Published: Mar. 21, 2022 at 7:47 PM CDT|Updated: Mar. 28, 2022 at 6:24 PM CDT
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DULUTH, MN. (KBJR) - For many Americans, watching the news coming out of Ukraine is devastating.

For some, it sparks a desire to help.

“Looking at all of the people trying to find shelter from Ukraine, I thought that there must be something that I can do,” said Lori Hatten, a Duluth resident.

For Hatten and her husband John Ward, shelter is something they can provide.

The Duluth couple is just one of thousands across the U.S. who have decided to open extra bedrooms to refugees.

It’s all possible through a website called Ukraine Take Shelter.

“I filled out my name, my address and telephone number and I described a little bit about what I was willing to provide,” said Hatten.

Should anyone take them up on their offer, Lori and John said they have enough room to house and feed two adults and one child from Ukraine.

“I tried to put myself in their shoes and wonder what would they do,” said Hatten.

That’s also what’s propelled Shane Wyzlic of Saxon, Wisconsin to help.

“I mean, can you just imagine being in your home in Duluth and having to flee because troops are coming down Highway 53,” said Wyzlic.

Instead of opening his home, he’s leaving his.

After connecting with a non-profit, he’s using a week of vacation days to head to Poland on a volunteering mission.

“I finally found a group of guys, Polish citizens that are delivering supplies into Ukraine,” said Wyzlic.

According to Wyzlic, after his trip is over, he’ll still be fundraising and will continue giving long after he returns home.

And for Lori and John, their guests can stay for quite a while.

“They can stay as long as they need to,” said Hatten.

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