Utah Friends of AMAR recently joined forces with Carissa Klitgaard and Ben Lowell, co-authors of “Kalyna, the Musical”—a performance that played to a crowd of nearly 1,000 on April 23, 2022 in Salt Lake City, Utah. Kalyna’s purpose was twofold: to increase people’s understanding of Ukraine’s history and the tragedy of the present-day Russian invasion, and to raise funds for those displaced by that civil conflict.

An accounting of the performance shows great success on both fronts. Funds were raised through event sponsors, ticket sales, an art auction, sales of the livestream and recording, and sales of other donated items. Net proceeds were $98,000—very close to the executive committee’s goal of $100,000.

The funds will be used to help Ukrainian children (particularly those with special needs) who are current refugees in Romania forcibly displaced from their homeland, and those who are still in Ukraine but at risk of displacement. Some children have been abandoned by their parents while others have lost contact with their parents.

Emphasis is placed on helping these children who are at a heightened risk of being trafficked due to their present vulnerable circumstances. Reports from AMAR London indicate several thousand children have already “gone missing,” while at least 100,000 have been taken against their will into Russia.

The money will help equip two schools for children with special needs. Monies will be used to supply these schools with laptops and iPads for educational purposes.

Additionally, a summer school is being organized by AMAR for Ukrainian children in Romania through the local education authority which will also be attended by some Romanian children—an endeavor to help integrate Ukrainian children into Romania society. A Community Action Program will begin the end of August to involve these refugees.

AMAR’s presence in Romania among its children in need is decades long. Ukrainian children pouring into that country intensify the level of need for help. Please consider donating to help bring comfort and relief to a terribly battered country. Click here: https://usfriendsofamar.org/make-a-donation/

AMAR is a private, not-for-profit 501 (c)(3) organization.  Established in 1991, AMAR provides health, education, training, and humanitarian assistance in Iraq and Romania, helping displaced individuals and communities affected by conflict, civil disorder, and natural disasters to rebuild their lives.