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Wairarapa locals bring sweet relief to Ukraine

Greytown woman Ariadna Motus, wearing a traditional Ukrainian blouse, has organised a bake sale to raise funds for UNICEF’s Ukraine Appeal. PHOTO/SUPPLIED

Erin Kavanagh-Hall
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A Greytown woman with a strong connection to her heritage, and group of big-hearted Masterton youngsters, are baking up a storm to support Ukrainian citizens in the grip of war.

This Saturday, Ariadna Motus will be hosting a bake sale at the Greytown Library – with all proceeds going to UNICEF UK’s Ukraine Appeal, supporting children and families displaced by the conflict.

Ari, whose parents were Ukrainian, organised the bake sale as part of the #cookforukraine movement, which has raised thousands of dollars worldwide for UNICEF’s appeal.

Also selling sweet treats for the cause is the Masterton Girl Guides Unit: who set up a stall at the Rotary Sunday Market to raise funds for the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts, providing aid to young refugee women.

This weekend’s fundraiser is close to Ari’s heart: her parents came to New Zealand in 1949 as displaced persons after the Ukrainian Diaspora, and Ari still has several relatives and friends living in Ukraine.

She was inspired to do a bake sale after coming across the Cook for Ukraine hashtag, which began on Instagram last month.

The movement was the brainchild of London-based friends Olia Hercules, a Ukrainian-born chef, and Russian food writer Alissa Timoshkina – and encourages people to set up their own foodie fundraisers to support Ukrainian civilians.

Ari said her bake sale has, so far, had a “wonderful response” from the Greytown community – with the Greytown Community Board and South Wairarapa District Council providing support and advice, Mrs Blackwell’s Village Bookshop lending stalls, and many residents contributing baked goodies.

“I’ve been deeply touched by the response to this idea,” Ari said.


“It’s going to be an amazing day. You’ll be able to find us by watching out for the yellow and blue in the town centre.”

The Masterton Guides had a similarly enthusiastic response to their bake sale last weekend, raising over $200 for WAGGGS emergency appeal for Ukraine.

The appeal funds essential items for Ukrainian refugees at border crossings, such as food, water, clothing, blankets, and menstrual supplies.

Masterton Guides unit leader Rochelle Aldridge said the girls were deeply affected by the war and felt compelled to do something to help their Ukrainian peers.

“They were saying ‘these are kids who are our age – what can we do?’” Rochelle said.

“They came up with the idea for the fundraiser all by themselves.”

The Greytown bake sale will be held on Saturday, April 9, from 10am to noon. Sales will be cash only.

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