New Hampshire-based aid group cheers Ukrainian aid approval

Plymouth, NH — More than two years ago, four friends watched in horror as Russia invaded Ukraine.

“We had to do something,” said Susan Mathison.

And that’s when Mathison, along with Alex Ray, Steve Rand and Lisa Mure founded Common Man for Ukraine -- an aid group specifically targeted to children.

“And we reached out to the rotary clubs in Poland and Ukraine and assembled a volunteer group of about a hundred truck drivers,” Mathison said, “They take the food from Poland into Ukraine every two weeks.”

So far, the group has delivered more than two million pounds of food to children in Ukraine -- made possible by $3.5 million in donations from Americans.

“These are the kids who are going to build Ukraine someday,” Mathison said. “We want them to know that they are loved and cared for.”

Ukrainians overall may have gotten that feeling Saturday when the U.S. Congress approved a Ukrainian aid package worth $61 billion. That money had been held up for months.

Mathison watched the vote from Ukraine during the ninth trip she’s made there thus far.

“And we cheered and the Ukrainians around us were so relieved and happy,” she said. “It’s not going to solve the problem, it’s not going to end the war tomorrow. But it’s a step in the right direction.”

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