'Many of them left with just the clothes on their back'; Williamsburg nonprofit works to bring Ukrainian orphans to safety

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Posted at 6:20 PM, Mar 31, 2022
and last updated 2022-04-01 13:06:36-04

WILLIAMSBURG, Va. - A local nonprofit whose mission is to help Ukrainian orphans has returned from Eastern Europe.

Nancy Hathaway is the founder and director of Heart for Orphans. She just returned from helping the orphans and caregivers living in transitional housing flee Ukraine.

“Our people have obviously gone through quite a bit of trauma, the war happened and there were explosions all over the country, so the idea of where to go was just terrifying," Hathaway said. "Many of them left with just the clothes on their back, they didn’t even have a change of clothes.”

She said the organization has four houses in Ukraine, with dozens of orphans living in them. All were able to escape the war torn country — except one.

“Right now they’re stuck, they’re stuck on the border and I’m working on how we can get that moving so we can get them into safety,” Hathaway said.

She said the support from neighboring countries for the refugees was moving to see.

“You’re driving on the highways and people are beeping the horn and waving because they see the Ukrainian license plate," Hathaway said. "People are rolling out the red carpet for the Ukrainians which is really encouraging to see.”

For more information on how you can help Heart for Orphans, click here.