SALT LAKE CITY — A Utah company is coming together with organizations around the world to help those in Ukraine suffering from the conflict.
Every year, Lifetime Products CEO Richard Hendrickson brings his employees together for a day of service as a way to give back to Utah communities. The service project is also an incentive to help employees receive a percentage of the company's profit-sharing.
“You get 3,000 people together working on the same task and the same goal, and it’s amazing what you can accomplish," said Hendrickson.
For 2022, Hendrickson and his employees are reaching out to their neighbors across the world by making hygiene kits for Ukrainians.
“These care kits have hygiene kits in them, socks, shirt, food, a variety of items that we have found out people are in need of," said Hendrickson.
Care kits are not needed at the Polish border, but Hendrickson has partnered with a non-profit organization that will take the kits directly into Ukraine.
Michael Capponi, the founder of The Global Empowerment Mission, said the kits are helping those who have decided to stay during the conflict.
“Those people have no resources right now," said Capponi. "There’s no power, there’s no electricity, there’s no water. They don’t have anything."
Even more than the need to give and provide for these people, Capponi's team are local Ukrainians giving back to their own people. That's what Capponi's nonprofit focuses on: Having locals build up their own community.
“What’s good about having Ukrainian locals deliver those is they know where Grandma lives," said Capponi. "They know where these people live.”
Since February, 97,000 individuals have donated to organizations partnering with The Global Empowerment Mission. 3,000 pallets full of supplies arrived in Ukraine from the U.S., with more on the way.
Cash donations for medical supplies, fuel and other necessities are what's needed most, said Capponi. Yet, The Global Empowerment Mission will take collected donations at certain drop-off locations listed on its website.
“I know that people really care and that’s what’s incredible about our country," said Capponi. "There’s nothing like America when it comes to helping others.”
The message of support almost speaks more than the donations.
“I hope that this provides just a little bit of relief for thousands of people who are really, truly struggling in ways that many of us can’t even imagine here," said Hendrickson.
About 7,000 hygiene kits were created in 48 hours at Lifetime Products Inc.
Hendrickson said he is also donating money for the freight expense to send the kits to Ukraine. The freight is expected to arrive overseas within the next month or so.