Topeka nonprofit holds benefit auction to support Ukrainian families

Published: Nov. 19, 2022 at 3:09 PM CST
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TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) - A nonprofit in Topeka is pulling together donations to help benefit Ukrainian families.

13 NEWS’ Reina Flores took a look at where they keeping the donations, and how the event came about in the first place.

LaVetta Rolfs and Verne Brien from the Learning For Life Center bought a home back in SW Topeka in September, and instead of moving in right away, they had another idea of how to use the space.

”We’re having a pass it on sale where we have our stuff, there are no prices on anything but everything that is purchased is a donation for the learning for life center so we can create an emergency fund so these families that are here that don’t have work permits yet get an opportunity to have support,” Rolfs said.

Every room in the house, which is located at SW Huntoon St and SW Indian Hills Rd, is full of donations including clothes, shoes, blankets, jewelry, household items, and much more. All of the donated items are going towards a great cause, but it also means much more than just offering a helping hand.

“LaVetta’s daughter was an exchange student and she went to Ukraine, and the school has now been destroyed and many of the students that were in Rachel’s class also went to Ukraine and stayed with LaVetta and her family and Rachel died about 8 years ago and so this is really important and beautiful for us to be able to reconnect with some of her old friends,” Brien said.

Ukrainians are able to shop for free at the sale and both Verne and Lavetta say they want to continue to help in any way they can.

”Most of them don’t have cars so transportation is an issue, so we are trying to close the gap while they are getting situated and learning how to live in a country that they didn’t really want to come to,” said Rolfs.

The last day to enter the silent auction is Tuesday, November 22.

For more information on the benefit event, click here. If you are interested in donating to Kansans for Ukrainians, click here.