Kaunas’ Support for Ukraine: Buses Loaded to the Ceiling and “Swept” Store Shelves

The campaign of support to Ukraine held in Kaunas over the weekend received a special activity of the residents. Kaunas residents generously donated the necessary goods for twin cities (Lutsk, Lviv region and Kharkiv) like baby food, diapers and hygiene items. These products were loaded up to 3 passenger buses. Humanitarian aid packages donated by the residents and the City will travel to war-torn Ukraine later this week. The buses that will took all those stuff will stay there also.

“The kindness of Kaunas once again exceeded all expectations. The support campaign at the Carmelite church attracted residents from the youngest to the senior. Whole communities came together and transported larger quantities of products. The people of Kaunas, in a very literal sense, were sweeping the shelves of the shops in all city.

We were able to recognize some of benefactors by faces, because they came back here several times over the weekend. The trailer with the products was even received from Sweden. We sincerely thank everyone who came and contributed”, Andrius Palionis, Deputy Mayor of Kaunas, said.

Over the weekend, three buses were filled by the residents’ collected support and the fourth bus was began to be fill. Long-life foods, bandages, medicines and medications will soon fill this and the rest buses. Such a humanitarian consignment is taken care of by Kaunas City Municipality, which directly cooperates with business organizations regarding the provision of support and the purchase of goods in large quantities.

Consignments of medical devices are subject to additional requirements and special permits, so their purchase is organized through the coordinated acquisition.

“Such sensitive moments are very positive and allow us to realize once again that people with big hearts live in our city. And we need to talk not only about the residents, but also about the various organizations. When contacting business enterprises, we usually do not even need to ask for something – they immediately offer their own help”, Paulius Keras, Head of the Emergency Situations and Operations Management Center of Kaunas Municipality, said.

One of such example is “Unimeda”, a company that produces cardboard packaging. Even on the eve of the supporting campaign, this company donated a large number of boxes to store the goods brought by people. Kaunas shopping center “Akropolis” broadcasted information about the supportive action taken place in the neighborhood throughout the weekend, moreover it immediately started applying discounts on goods collected for humanitarian aid.

About half a hundred municipal employees gathered together to collect, sort and load the support on the buses. Representatives of “Kauno autobusai” took care of transportation.

Currently, 10 passenger buses are technically ready for departure to Ukraine. Permits for the transportation of humanitarian aid across the Ukrainian border are being processed now, and all the transfer details are being harmonized. Along with all the collected support, the buses – the red “Solar” buses that have been rolling through the streets of Kaunas since 2005 – will be handed over to a country that are being plagued by war aggression.