BEAUFORT, S.C. (March 11, 2022) – The City of Beaufort is using its Pride of Place account to raise funds for the city of Ostroh, Ukraine, as war rages in that country.
Ostroh is a historic city, dating to the Middle Ages, located in the Rivne province in Western Ukraine. With a population of 15,000, it is similar in size to Beaufort.
A few days ago, Mayor Stephen Murray contacted Ostroh Mayor Yurii Yahodka via email to let him know of Beaufort’s interest in helping a city of similar size and historic significance during this time.
“Currently, we need supplies for our defenders to save people’s lives,” Mayor Yahodka replied in an email. “Along with protecting vests and helmets, there is huge need for thermal imagers, walkie-talkies and medicines.”
Mayor Murray said he was looking for a “meaningful way to help the people of Ukraine. That made me think we could ‘adopt’ a town similar to Beaufort and use Pride of Place to raise funds. After a little research, I found Ostroh. It’s a similar size to Beaufort. They are home to Ukraine's first university, and are similar in population.”
On Thursday, the two mayors spoke via a Zoom call, with the help of English interpreter in Mayor Yahodka’s office. Ostroh, which is approximately 217 miles west of Kiev and 177 miles east of the border with Poland, is currently not the site of any fighting, Yahodka said. But it is helping refugees from other parts of Ukraine such as Kyiv and Kharkiv, and working to get supplies to other parts of the country that are under siege.
“We need aid for the elderly and the young as we try to find a place where the refugees can camp and rest,” Mayor Yahodka said via Zoom.
“With this money, first of all we will buy medicine, food, first aid products, oil and supplies for the people and the Army who needs help,” he said. “Many of the men are at the center of Ukraine – they protect us so we need to provide for them.” He said that the city had received humanitarian aid from Germany, Poland, and the Czech Republic.
Russia invaded Ukraine on Feb. 24, and since then has advanced slowly in the country. The invasion has inflicted tens of billions of dollars of infrastructure damage on the country. It’s difficult to get an accurate count of both Ukrainian and Russian casualties, but at least 2 million people, mostly women and children, have fled Ukraine to neighboring countries, primarily Poland.
Those who are interested in donating can either:
- Write a check to Beaufort Pride of Place/Ukrainian Relief and mail to Beaufort City Hall, Pride of Place/Ukrainian Relief; 1911 Boundary St., Beaufort, SC 29902. You can also stop by City Hall in person with a check, Monday-Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Please go to the 2nd floor, City Manager’s Office.
- Donate online at http://www.cityofbeaufort.org/270/Beaufort-Pride-of-Place
All donations will be given to the City of Ostroh, which has set up an account to receive donations.
“Thank you once again for standing with Ukraine! Citizens of Ostroh are grateful to the people of Beaufort for coming to help us! Once it’s all over and Ukraine wins this unfair war, you are welcome to visit us to celebrate the victory,” Mayor Yahodka said in his email to Mayor Murray.
Beaufort Pride of Place