Helenans help secure food and medical equipment in war-torn Ukraine

Hands On Global Director Valerie Hellermann and photographer/videographer Jeanie Warden, both Helena residents, spent much of their time in and around Chernivtsi, Ukraine, during a recent humanitarian trip. 

Photo provided by Jeanie Warden

During her second humanitarian trip to Ukraine in less than a year, Valerie Hellermann of Helena said she was struck by the way people have learned to live with war. 

“There’s a certain normalcy that develops,” she said. “Sirens rang and people just go into shelters and then they come out and finish what they were doing.”

A former registered nurse and the director of international aid organization Hands On Global based in Helena, Hellermann spent about three weeks in Ukraine in March before returning to the war-torn country Nov. 30-Dec. 13 with local photographer and videographer Jeanie Warden. Hellermann and her team, including Hands On Global board member and nurse Lily Schroeder from Seattle, Washington, spent the latest trip delivering complex medical orthopedic equipment for victims of violence and helping an orphanage get needed food and medications.

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