A Ukrainian businesswoman has described the agony of knowing her family are caught up in the conflict in her homeland but being unable to help.
Alina Kanishchuk moved to the UK from Ukraine nine years ago and now runs a sushi restaurant in North Tyneside.
Her mother and sister are still in Kyiv and Alina says she can hardly sleep due to constantly worrying about their safety with Russian forces continuing to advance toward the Ukrainian capital.
The businesswoman said: "It's just an absolute nightmare. You're going to bed every night trying to sleep but you're closing your eyes for half an hour and waking up and checking your phone, watching the news, and just texting your family just to make sure everything is alright."
It comes as Russian troops continued their eighth day of attacks on Ukraine and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy called for Russian President Vladimir Putin to meet him, salting the proposal with sarcasm.
“Sit down with me to negotiate, just not at 30 metres," he said on Thursday, apparently referring to recent photos of Putin sitting at one end of an extremely long table when he met with French President Emmanuel Macron.
“I don’t bite. What are you afraid of?” Mr Zelenskyy said at a Thursday news conference.
He added it was sensible to have talks: “Any words are more important than shots.”
At Alina's business in North Shields, locals have been dropping donations off, all from people desperate to do whatever they can to help.
She says at the moment her family are safe and it is that which is keeping her going as she sorts donations from the public at her restaurant.
"At the moment they are safe. I am in contact with them twenty-four seven. My sister text a couple of days ago and said 'I'm really scared'. She's 22-years-old, and she says (the current situation) is not a birthday present she was expecting", Alina said.
The donations will be taken to a hub in North Tyneside and then on to London where they'll be loaded onto a truck and delivered to Poland in the hope it can help some of the 800,000 refugees forced to flee Ukraine.
Watch the full report from Tom Barton...