CLEVELAND — Giving birth in a bomb shelter is a grim reality that some Ukrainian women are facing as Russia invades their country. One mom from Uzbekistan wants them to feel her sympathy and support all the way from Cleveland.

What You Need To Know

  • Kira Mogilnitsky is a self-employed mother of two who organized a baby supply drive to help mothers in Ukraine

  • She was inspired to help after thinking of the challenges of having her own newborn

  • She is currently running an online fundraiser through GoFundMe

Kira Mogilnitsky loves being a mom. 

Mogilnitsky said she’s adjusting to her growing family after giving birth to her second child, Savva, Oct. 3.

“It’s more of just like trying to multitask and do everything at once,” Mogilnitsky said.

Thinking about the challenges of having a newborn herself, Mogilnitsky said she knew she had to help the moms who are trying to keep their children safe and cared for in Ukraine.

“My husband, like I said, is from Ukraine — from Kyiv,” Mogilnitsky said. “So it’s, you know, like seeing his, you know, his community being destroyed, and like his buildings where he lived, [where] he went to school and day care just being torn apart, and then seeing it with what’s going on with like the moms, and the newborns, and just families being torn apart. You know, I felt like we had to do something.”

The self-employed mother of two responded by launching a donation drive to collect baby supplies for families who are affected by Russia’s invasion.

“The first thing that we thought of, you know, just the newborns,” she said. “Since we have a newborn, I know how hard it is, and tough it is, how tough it is right now to just do everything on the run, and how important the essentials are, [and] how quickly you get used to them, and knowing that they don’t have it at [their] fingertips right now.”

Mogilnitsky added they collected a ton of products to send overseas.

“We got so many donations that it pretty much didn’t fit into our garage,” she said. “So, we ended up taking it to my husband’s dealership, where we sorted everything, packed everything, and got it on a container. So, it was over, it was a ton, literally a ton of products. It was 2,000 pounds.”

Mogilnitsky added the amount of donations overwhelmed her from the community but said they initially ran into delays getting the shipment delivered.  

“You know, people from all over the world are sending their donations there, so things are backed up,” Mogilnitsky said.

So, she created a GoFundMe page to raise monetary donations while the shipment was in transit.

“We knew that it’s going to get there, but we also know that, you know, little kids can’t wait,” she said. “So, we started the GofundMe charity so we can get the funds quicker and sent there right away to Ukraine.”

The shipment has since arrived in Ukraine. But, online, the donations are still rolling in.

“We got actually a ton of donations,” she said. “It’s 1,600 [dollars]. I didn’t check it for a couple of days.”

She has a goal of raising over $3,000.

“The money is being sent to our friends in Ukraine,” she said. “It’s being transferred to our friend, and she’s purchasing all the diapers, and formula, and other baby essentials. [Then she’s] giving it to moms that are in need. They can come in [on an] as-needed basis, pick up their, you know, essentials, and it’s free.”

It’s help she thinks any mom would appreciate, and she said any mom can relate to this.

“Just being heartbroken, knowing how hard it is being a mom, and how much you do for your little one,” Mogilnitsky said. “I think they can sense that and feel that in their heart. And so I just think that it’s a natural thing to do—you want to help.”

Mogilnitsky said she also plans to host another supply drive once shipping delays are sorted.