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Oleksandra
Bakanova
It is very scary to see war in your home, hear explosions and see flashes in the sky

Brief

When the war started in Ukraine, Olexandra did not immediately understand what was happening. Although she saw panic in the city and queues at gas stations and stores. But the rocket that flew right near the house frightened and sobered Olexandra. She knew she needed to act now. There might be no tomorrow.

Olexandra realised there will be no animal food soon in the city. One should not count on humanitarian aid – the city of Sumy has a kennel club and an animal shelter. Most likely, any humanitarian aid that arrives in the city will be distributed among these institutions. But there are also dozens of so-called “mini-shelters” in the city – usually, pensioners take animals from the streets and look after them. There are also a lot of people who simply cannot afford to buy food for their animals. There are volunteers who are looking out for homeless animals and feeding them during the war.

Olexandra and her volunteer friend self-organised to help as many animals in the city as possible. They prepared a base of all mini-shelters, volunteers and animal owners who need help. First, they were buying food with their own money and donations from Olexandra’s friends and clients. But there was still the fear that the food supplies would soon run out and the animals might remain hungry.

Before the war, in addition to veterinary practice, Olexandra had her own small-scale production of natural dog food. Employees left the city, but the production capacity remained. The decision was made to be back into production. Today, Olexandra’s team is providing food for the next month to 8 mini-shelters in Sumy, as well as providing daily assistance to elderly and disabled animal owners, and giving food to volunteers who feed street animals.

Basically, money is needed to purchase raw materials for the food supply production, medicines and care products. Olexandra really wants to create a safety cushion for all disabled animal owners and mini-shelters. Olexandra says the people who are now helping animals, while not having funds for themselves, are real heroes. She wants to help them become full-fledged and secure owners, so she plans to help these people not only with food but also with the necessary veterinary care. 

It is very scary to see war in your home, hear explosions and see flashes in the sky – says Olexandra. But she can see men fortifying the city, women making Molotov cocktails and weaving nets, she sees humanity and support from everywhere. And in the early days of the war, soldiers of the Territorial Defense Forces even brought Olexandra several sacks of food and asked her to take care of the city’s dogs and cats. There are humanity, selflessness and the love of people that inspire Olexandra so much. After the victory, she will continue to take care of animals, especially those who lack human care and love.

Before the War

Entrepreneur with a vet license

Site of Operation

Sumy

Operation Directions

Animals