Van appeal to help dads deliver aid to Lithuania
- Credit: Laura Clinton
Three Ipswich fathers have come together to deliver aid to refugees in Lithuania, but they need help for the final step of their journey.
On Friday, April 8, Edd Cottee and David Cole will be driving to the village of Alksniupiai, where they will meet Edd’s friend, Andy Davies.
Now, they are appealing to the community to help them find a van to get them there.
Andy Davies has been living in Alksniupiai for the past five years with his partner and son.
He says there are hundreds of Ukrainian refugees pouring into Lithuania, and his quiet, rural village is expecting many to arrive as the conflict rages on.
“It's all women and children, and they’re going to be turning up with only the bag they managed to flee with,” Andy said.
“We’re dealing with people who are coming into our area, whether they stay for the two weeks or the rest of their lives. We’ve helped a couple of kids, but until we get some stuff out here, it’s difficult.”
- 1 Road near Ipswich flooded as drivers forced to find alternative routes
- 2 Thunderstorms warning upgraded in Suffolk ahead of rain
- 3 'Tit for tat' attacks driven by gang members vying for position, police say
- 4 Pub with 'gorgeous views' named one of UK's best waterside drinking spots
- 5 VW Golf stolen from Ipswich road after thieves take car keys from home
- 6 Window smashed at Ipswich home in spate of attempted burglaries
- 7 Four people charged as police find machete after brawl in Ipswich street
- 8 Severe delays on A12 as carriageway floods during extreme rainfall
- 9 Ipswich man and Cadillac films with The Only Way Is Essex
- 10 Ex-Town loanee Bonne looks set to depart QPR
Andy had kept in contact with Edd in Ipswich.
“We were chatting, and Andy said, 'we need some help out here, it’s getting a bit desperate,'” said Edd.
Edd decided to drive out to Lithuania, and started a JustGiving page to gather aid and donations. His children’s primary school, Dale Hall, rallied around him, which is how he came to meet fellow parent, David Cole.
“If the shoes were on the other foot, we would have both had to stay behind and fight. We would want someone to do something to look after our loved ones, and we just want to be those people,” said David.
He and Edd will complete the 28-hour drive to Alksniupiai together.
They are particularly keen to source aid for children, but say that any donations will be put to good use.
“Our biggest stumbling block now is getting a van,” said David. “We need to find a long wheelbase transit, or something similar, to actually get all this stuff to Lithuania.”
If anyone is able to help, Edd and David can be contacted through their JustGiving page at: www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/edward-cottee-1-ukraine