An ad hoc army of volunteers assembles to help Ukrainian refugees

Eric Westervelt at NPR: “Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has sparked the fastest-growing refugee crisis in Europe since World War II as the U.N. refugee agency says more than 1.5 million Ukrainians have fled their homeland in just the first 12 days of fighting.

The bulk of the refugees — more than 1 million — have left Ukraine through one of eight border crossings in Poland. At more than 20 reception centers along the Polish border, NGOs, charities and the U.N. refugee agency are being aided by an ad hoc army of volunteers from Poland and across Europe who are playing a vital support role serving food, directing donations and helping to drive refugees to friends and family across the continent.

“This is not job for me. If I can help, I can help,” says Krstaps Naymanes, a deliveryman from Liepaja, Latvia, who hit pause on his day job to aid Ukrainians. With friends and a charity, he helped organize cars, RVs and a large bus to take refugees anywhere in Latvia, where others on the ground there are ready to help.”We have flats, houses, food, everything,” he says. “Don’t charge, like, money for this. Peoples want help, and can help. This time need to do! That’s it.”…(More)”.