Renfrewshire’s response to help people in Ukraine has been overwhelming

An incredible response from the people of Renfrewshire has seen those organising collections inundated with donations for the Ukraine.

Several schools, shops, pubs, cafes and even Scout groups across the district have organised collections.

MP for Paisley and Renfrewshire North Gavin Newlands, was one of the first to offer up his office as a base for collections.

The SNP man said he and staff had been overwhelmed with the amount of items donated, which are being coordinated and collected by members of the Polish community in Renfrew.

He said: “To see a sovereign peaceful nation invaded by a foreign aggressor is deeply troubling and will rightly concern every right-minded individual.

“While I will continue to work with parliamentary colleagues across the House to ensure the UK Government has the strongest possible response, I also wanted to offer some practical assistance by making my constituency office available for donations to help those impacted by this unprovoked act of aggression by Vladimir Putin.

“I’m very grateful to the group of Polish Renfrewshire residents who came forward looking for assistance.

“Since putting out the call for donations my office has been absolutely inundated with contributions including toiletries, prams, baby formula, medicines and well over 300 packets of nappies. I have been truly overwhelmed but not surprised by the generosity of the people of Renfrewshire and beyond.”

Mr Newlands, together with his staff and volunteers, are now working to catalogue the donations – which span the two floors of his Renfrew office – and make sure it gets to the people who need it most.

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St Mary’s Primary School in Paisley also put out an appeal to parents and acted as a base for many local collections.

Principal teacher Gillian Brownlie said: “A letter was sent home to our pupils which resulted in various local businesses and shops donating.

“Our pupils and families have sent in a tremendous amount. Local nursery Hugh Smiley have donated as well as The Wee Howff and Muscle Madness in Paisley.

“We would like to thank our pupils, families, staff and local community for their amazing support and contributions to Ukraine as well as Beith Community centre, supported by Richard Healey’s Removals; JW Grants and MSP Gavin Newlands for accepting all of our donations.

“Words cant express the kindness experienced and overwhelming feeling of community spirit.”

West College Scotland Students Association is carrying out fundraising for students in Ukraine while staff are also arranging collections.

A spokesperson for the college said: “We also intend to fly the Ukrainian flag at some of our campus sites to express our solidarity with the people of Ukraine and convey the message, shared across our staff and student body, that we stand with them.”

Other local collections which are on their way to Poland to help with efforts there were arranged by pet supply store the Animal Station in Paisley; buildings supplies company Rukeri; builders merchant JW Grants; Explorers and Scouts from the 2nd Johnstone Scouts; Paisley coffee shop Bianco Nero and A.G Theatre School in Johnstone.

The Disasters Emergency Committee has now launched an appeal to raise money to help people in Ukraine. To donate, go to

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Daily Record – Paisley