Vienna Mission for Ukraine

12/17 to 01/23 Recap

Published by Vienna Mission for Ukraine on

12/17 to 01/23 Recap

Summary of VM4U Refugee Children’s Programs:

  • Football Program, Oleksandr
  • Music Program, Nadin
  • Bicycle Project, Gebhard
  • St. Nicholas Project (complete), Svetlana
  • Orphanage Support Program, Svetlana

VM4U, in close collaboration with the Dominka and the Feel Good Store, work hard to support the welfare of refugee children in our network. The Football and Music Programs return children to their athletic and music training, make friends, and build community. The Bicycle Project seeks to provide refugee children bicycles, an essential part of every childhood and essential life skill. The St. Nicholas Project, completed on 01/10, provided gifts and holiday joy to refugee children in Vienna, and the 4 orphanages in the Team Vienna network in Austria and Ukraine. The St. Nicholas Project continues as the Orphanage Support Program to support the orphanages in the Team Vienna network.


Holly, German Program Manager, working in collaboration with Domivka, plans to host the entry-level German pilot course to a class of six adult refugees beginning 02/12 at Domivka’s facility in the second district. The course already has very high demand. The VM4U/Domivka approach includes a Russian/Ukrainian speaking and refugee-sensitised instructor; hosting at a facility with a potential for child care in the next room; a feedback loop through Domivka for continuous improvement of the course; and at no cost to the refugees. Gebhard, Integration Program Manager, is looking for Austrian government support for the language program. VM4U donations will cover costs of teaching supplies. VM4U cannot pay instructors or volunteers but encourages patrons who might want to privately sponsor an instructor to reach out.


Nadiia, Music Program Manager, is working to return refugee children to their music training. She has hosted 5 educational (fun) events and has organized 4 instructors, many instruments, and training sessions for 9 kids. Piano instructors are currently needed to return 8 children to music training. Donations are needed for instrument maintenance and small event costs. VM4U cannot pay instructors or volunteers but encourages patrons who might want to privately sponsor an instructor to reach out. Gebhard, Integration Program Manager, is exploring possible Austrian government support. The Music Program is a collaboration with Domivka.

Training in progress:

  • Inna, guitar instructor, Liberty Education organization (, 4 kids, 30 min/week, 2 kids/session, using donated guitars
  • Miriam, pianos instructor, 2 kids, 30 min/week, 1 kid/session, using borrowed keyboard
  • Joel, saxophone instructor, 2 kids, 30 min/week, 1 kid/session, using borrowed saxophone
  • Nadiia, violin instructor, 1 kid, 30 min/week, 1 kid/session, using borrowed violin

Donated/borrowed/sponsored instruments include:

  • 1 child’s acoustic guitar, donated by unknown (in use)
  • 1 acoustic Guitar, donated by Sarah, Feel Good Store (in use)
  • 1 electric keyboard, borrowed from Katja and her mom (in use)
  • 1 violin, donated by Gebhard to Dima (in use)
  • 1 cello, sponsored by Jake and Adam to 17 yr girl (in use)
  • 1 electric keyboard, donated by Mariam to Yuliia in Baden (in use)
  • 1 saxophone, borrowed from Joel
  • 1 violin, borrowed from Nadiia
  • 1 electric guitar, available from Jesse’s friend
  • 1 electric guitar, available from Eileen
  • 1 electric base guitar, available from Eileen
  • 1 small keyboard, available from Olga, Feel Good Store
  • 2 violins, available from Eileen

12/10, 12/11, 12/17, 12/18 MUSIC PROGRAM – MUSIC EDUCATION

9-10 kids, ages 5-15, participated in an online, instructor led viewing of the Nutcracker and Pergunt performances. The instructor was Anastasiia, ArtForFuture, who provided instruction in Russian and German languages. VM4U donations were used to support the children’s participation in these lessons.



Svetlana, Project Manager, coordinated the collection and delivery of 417 presents (and ~500 sweets) to children in the Team Vienna network, including 4 orphanages. Presents and sweets were raised by Svetlana, Cliff, Gebhard, Kleine Herzen, Kristine, Karrissa, Vienna Family Network, Domivka, The Feel Good Store, and others. Gifts were delivered to orphanages by VM4U, First Aid First Hand, and The Feel Good Store drivers. Santa, a personal friend of Cliff, visited Kogl Orphanage. VM4U donations covered the cost of vehicle fuel and shipping; no VM4U donations were used to purchase presents or sweets.


Nathan, Furnishings Program Manager, continues to work with Olga, Feel Good Store, to transfer furniture and appliances directly from donors to refugees using the First Aid First Hand van with assistance from volunteers Pasha, Oleksandr, Arkady, and others. VM4U donations are used to fuel and maintain the First Aid First Hand van. Volunteers are needed, please reach out to Nathan.


Susan, Rotary Club Charity Committee Chair, reached out to Adam, VM4U Executive Director, regarding collaboration on a generator supply project (discussed soon).

12/19, 01/02, 01/06, 01/13, 01/20 FOOTBALL PROGRAM UPDATE

Coach Oleksandr, Football Program Manager, and Coach Sergii continue to host football training for children ages 6-11 on Monday nights from 17:30-19:00 at Castellezgasse 35 in collaboration with Domivka. Roxy, Psychological Support Program Manager, continues to bring snacks to the kids after each session which has become tradition. Indoor gymnasium use is cost-free. €220 in program specific donations from Julia and Sharon are in reserve with this program.


The bicycle program raises very low-to-no cost bicycles for refugee children. Maria, a 12 year old volunteer, and four of her friends raised €100.31 by hosting a cupcake fundraiser at their school. Maria, together with Gebhard, Bicycle Project Manager, and The Feel Good Store, organized for the donation to purchase 5 bicycles which Maria gave directly to 5 refugee children randomly selected by The Feel Good Store.


A refugee and cat, who have been staying in the Vienna since 5 April 2022, hitched a ride to Lviv during the 12/26 VM4U Van Mission for continuation by train to her family home in Odessa where her mother resides.


Rotary and VM4U collaborated to sponsor and supply an 11 kW generator to Kharkiv Psychological Hospital No. 3. Susan, Rotary Club Charity Committee Chair, served a Rotary’s Project Manager; Adam, VM4U, served as Project Manager; Oleg, VM4U, identified the hospital; Michael, VM4U Generator Project Manager, sourced the generator; Marcus, First Aid First Hand, purchased and staged the generator at LH138; a VM4U van team transported the generator to Lviv which was shipped to Kharkiv by Nova Poshta (Ukraine mail service). The generator cost was €2998 of which Rotary contributed €2k and VM4U contributed €1k plus delivery costs and volunteer time.


Svetlana, Case Officer, Eileen, Sasha, and David worked to organize accommodation for 11 refugees in Mureck (outside of Graz). These 11 refugees are relatives of the 2 foster parents of the 15 foster children/orphans which were relocated to Mureck as part of the Rivne Rescue Project. On 12/28, these 11 refugees were transported by train and vehicle from Ukraine to Mureck, thanks to Pawel, a volunteer in Poland.

12/26, 01/03, 01/10, 01/14 VAN MISSIONS – LVIV

Generators, power banks, Oleg’s insulin, medical supplies and equipment, children’s gifts, and private parcels were transported from Vienna to Ukraine by VM4U, First Aid First Hand, and The Feel Good Store drivers in the First Aid First Hand van and supported YOUkraine, Social Work Hub, VM4U, Rotary Club, First Aid First Hand, Kleine Herzen, and Save Ukraine organizations and private individuals. Drivers for van missions included volunteers from VM4U, First Aid First Hand, and The Feel Good Store organizations and the First Aid First Hand van. Van missions supported VM4U projects including the Kharkiv Hospital Generator Supply Project, St. Nicholas Project, and Zhuravno Orphanage Supply Project. Fuel, tolls, maintenance, and driver lodging costs are supported by VM4U donations.


40 L of diesel to supply generators was delivered to the orphanage on 01/04 which was sponsored by project specific donations. A total of 140 of 1200 L of needed diesel has been supplied to date. Sponsorship of additional diesel as well as 2 washing machines and 2 dryers is needed. See the dedicated project website for additional information:


Instructors Nadin and Bogdan, introduced and facilitated 18 children (and their parents), ages 4+ to play 10 traditional Ukrainian instruments, including tsimbaly, bandura, resheto, lira, etc., in the context of Ukrainian and European regional folklore including parts of the Vertep (nativity scene). The 2 hours event was hosted by Domivka.


The Feel Good Store has direct communication with and delivery capability to at-risk groups in Ukraine. Gebhard, using is connection with MA48, had sourced a large supply of very low cost used winter coats which the Feel Good Store was able to immediately deliver directly to at-risk people in Kherson. The cost of the coats were covered by VM4U donations.