Ukrainian-born nurse at South Tyneside Hospital leads donation collection for her home country

Critical Care nurse Irene Babrovich, who was born in Chernihiv, a city around 140km north of the capital Kyiv, has been collecting donations with the help of her colleagues. Credit: South Tyneside and Sunderland NHS Foundation Trust

A Ukrainian-born nurse is among the staff at South Tyneside Hospital collecting donations to help refugees in her home country.

Irene Babrovich - who is a critical care outreach worker - has been collecting sleeping bags, non-perishable foods and baby supplies with the help of her colleagues.

Ms Babrovich was born in Chernihiv, a city around 140km north of the capital Kyiv, and she still has loved ones who remain in the country.

She said: “When the conflict started, my friends and I got together and decided to do something, as doing nothing was not an option.

“The sheer frustration, helplessness and hopelessness of the situation in Ukraine, where we have either family, or friends or acquaintances got to us.

She added: “It’s just amazing how many things we were given. 

“We need the support, we have been overwhelmed by what’s happening and want to do everything we can to help.”

NHS colleagues from across South Tyneside and Sunderland NHS Foundation Trust have also donated equipment and medical supplies to the country.

Kate Gordon, an Emergency Department Nurse, who is also based at the same hospital, and colleagues have sent 12 carloads of donations to Ukraine.

Other collections have been organised by Sunderland West District Nurses from the Sunderland and Community Integrated Team, based in Grindon, the Community Integrated Team at Riverview Health Centre and the Trust’s Bladder and Bowel Service, based at Clarendon in Hebburn.

Peter Sutton, the Trust’s Executive Director of Planning and Business Development, said: “We are working with our colleagues directly impacted by the conflict and offering support to our staff who feel the impact of the upsetting events.

“We are extremely proud of our workforce for the care they have shown through the collections and to play our own part by making the donation of equipment and medical supplies we have sent in partnership with Trusts from the region.”