You’re not alone if you’re horrified by the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Unfortunately, this type of aggression is nothing new to the thousands of families, many of which are women and children, who annually flee from their homeland because they are in danger of being persecuted. We’re ready for the challenge but need resources to safely resettle the displaced refugees from Ukraine and other war-torn countries and help them be self-sufficient.

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Operation Ukraine Humanitarian Mission
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To understand what Ukrainian refugees need most and how we can help, Samaritas representative Mihaila Mitrofan went on a humanitarian mission to Ukraine in May 2022. What she found was many local people volunteering their time and resources to help refugees find shelter, essential medications, and resources, as well as refugees volunteering their own time. Still, local organizations were struggling to keep up with the number of vulnerable people fleeing ongoing combat. Mitrofan brought her findings to Samaritas so we could best support the refugees arriving in Michigan, and help overseas with what is needed most. ** Click the images to read more **


Day 1 - Samaritas executive of New American services, Mihaela Mitrofan, returned to her native Romania and Ukraine to help on the front lines. Mitrofan will help with refugee resettlement of unaccompanied minors coming into Romania, take emergency food and medical supplies into Ukraine and help rescue children hospitalized near the Ukrainian capital city of Kyiv. Click the image above to read more.

Day 2 and 3 - Mihaela coordinated with the Ukraine mission team the purchasing of food, toiletries, personal care and medical supplies which are stored in a donated warehouse. Mihaela interviewed Beni Faragau, pastor at Iris Baptist Church and a volunteer who served several weeks with logistics and hands on support hosting Ukrainian refugee families at the church intake center. Click the image above to read more.

Day 4 - Mihaela met two young students from Cernavtsi, Ukraine, who are temporarily staying in the city of Dej to serve as volunteer interpreters assisting through a partnership between House of Hope Association, Emanuel Baptist Church, which took in approximately 40 refugees. The small Village of Chiuesti (population 2332) took in 20 refugees. Today, the team also met to finalize the logistics for the trip to Ukraine. Click the image above to read more.

Day 5 & 6 - Mihaela visited the township of Chiuiesti, population 2332, where 28 refugees are hosted at the cultural center. The mayor mobilized his team and the local community, including the local baptist and orthodox churches to help set up 10 rooms to host the refugee families. The group agreed to be interviewed and we met in the library to share their stories. Click the image above to read more.

Day 7 - We were joined by a mom with two kids and a single lady who needed a ride to Cernavtsi because they want to go home to Ukraine. After driving for one hour we stopped by in Bistrita to pick up another mother and her 16 years old daughter. It was sad to see them alone, shivering in the early morning cold at 4am, heading back to their war-torn home country, reuniting with husband and sons. Click the image above to read more.

Day 8 - Mihaela and the team visited the warehouse where donations are stored for distribution to Ukrainian refugees in the villages of Dranitsa and Mamaliga. The children arrived at around 5:30PM in a big green bus. They looked tired and scared of what was ahead of them, but they were happy to sit at the table and eat a warm meal. Click the image above to read more.

Day 9 - Mihaela and the team had a long wrap up meeting followed by an interview with the People and Deeds Association Founder, Daniel Macovei who shared his reflections about the Ukraine Children Operation. Mr. Macovei thanked all the donors and supporters for all the help they received to set the framework for a very complex operation to bring up to 200 Ukrainian refugee children and their mothers to Romania for medical care. Click the image above to read more.

Day 10 - The Ukrainian refugee children and mothers were taken to the local immigration office to register with the local authorities and apply for temporary protected status. Mihaela spent the last two days traveling from Suceava to Bucharest with a few stops in beautiful Bicaz Chei, Lacul Rosu, Harghita and crossing through Bucegi mountains at an altitude of 2000 meters. Click the image above to read more.

The anticipation of up to 100,000 Ukrainian refugees have federal, state, and agencies like Samaritas concerned about strained resources, staff, and housing for this new wave. Samaritas will play a crucial role in welcoming displaced Ukrainians to Michigan in the upcoming months.

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You Can Help Us!
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Joining forces with organizations, small and large to provide comprehensive support for entire families. Like-minded individuals from businesses, churches, or other groups can also make a big difference. Contact Mackenzie Benninger at or call (248) 840-2935 for more information on becoming a sponsor.

Help Refugees Today!

Want to help refugees in your community? You can show your support by giving a donation today!