The Ukraine House of San Diego works with other local organizations such as “Help Ukraine nowto help those caught up in the ongoing chaos with the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Victoria Ivanova is a Ukrainian immigrant who is an active member of Ukraine House in Balboa Park. KPBS spoke to him Tuesday at the House warehouse on University Avenue in City Heights. She said she was worried about her family, who live in Kyiv, the Ukrainian capital.

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“I have faith that God is on our side, that the whole world is on our side. So I can’t just sit and cry. I try to do everything possible to support my country on this side. Even though I’m not there, I’m still fighting,” she said.

Jacob Aere

Victoria Ivanova pushes a cart with donations inside the House of Ukraine San Diego storage unit on El Cajon Blvd, March 8, 2022.

Ivanova, who is also the coordinator of Ukrainian School of San Diego, said there are many ways to help. This includes financial donations, political support and the provision of supplies.

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Ivanova said the greatest need right now is for medical and military equipment. These items can be dropped off at El Cajon Blvd. Unit, which operates from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily.

“We ask for things like thermal blankets, thermal underwear, socks; it’s a bit cold right now. I talked to my parents today and it’s snowing. So we need certain things to keep people warm,” she said.

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Jacob Aere

Military bags filled with medical supplies lay on the floor in the House of Ukraine San Diego storage unit on El Cajon Blvd, March 8, 2022.

Ivanova said they are also preparing for an influx of Ukrainian asylum seekers who may arrive in the area.

“Right now we don’t have a lot of refugees, we don’t have anyone here in San Diego yet. But we will wait for them, people are coming through here,” she said, adding that groceries are not yet a priority for their donation center.

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Ivanova said their supplies are sent out every few days, with materials eventually arriving by air to some of the surrounding European countries.

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Jacob Aere

A woman walks towards a banner hanging outside the House of Ukraine San Diego storage unit on El Cajon Blvd, March 8, 2022.

San Diego Jewish Family Service said their organization will be one of the main points of contact for Ukrainian asylum seekers coming to the region, which could start happening in the coming weeks or months.

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For more information and ways to help, go to houseofukraine.org.