Refugee help group from Franklin wraps up in Warsaw

Warsaw Poland.JPG
Posted at 3:40 PM, Apr 04, 2022
and last updated 2022-04-05 07:50:21-04

FRANKLIN, Tenn. (WTVF) — A local refugee help group from Franklin wrapped up their time helping refugees in Warsaw, Poland.

The Outreach Foundation visited the country to aid people who were fleeing Ukraine.

Mark Mueller, the executive director of the foundation, went with others to gauge the needs of the millions of refugees who fled Ukraine.

He said he witnessed firsthand the devastating effects of war.

"You saw pregnant mothers walking long distances, barely able to move having traveled and walk so far," said Mueller. "You see little children, you've seen baby carriages, you've seen grandmothers and grandfathers trying to get out of harm's way."

The refugees are trying to escape the bloodshed, he said.

Some people can't leave the country. Oleg Vasilevsky is still in Ukraine and spoke about his experience in the country.

He along with others, including several children, shelter in a former cafe in Kyiv.

It's partially underground. So they feel it's a safer place to be in the event the building is bombed.

"When you come to Kyiv, you realize how serious everything is," said Vasilevsky. "People seem to be very coordinated."

He said people still in the country are helping each other, but there is also aid coming from other countries.

Vasilevsky said he can hear artillery fire or bombing all day long.

"Sometimes you can even hear the windows trembling," he said. "Sometimes it's further away because they're trying to cut Kyiv off from the supply of food and any kind of humanitarian aid and weapons."

Mueller said it's a serious situation and raising awareness is important for them to continue aiding the people here.

"The group has moved on from the country to help refugees from other conflicts," Muller said.