Art doll

Baby refugee elated to receive same doll she left in Ukraine thanks to charity

A young refugee was delighted to receive a doll exactly the same as the one she had to leave behind in Ukraine after arriving in the UK.

Veronika and her mother Tatyana arrived in the UK on Thursday to stay with a sponsor family in Epsom and Ewell, Surrey, through the Homes for Ukraine scheme.

They arrived with just one case and a stroller, so the godfather’s family contacted the Stripey Stork Baby Bank Charity to try and get help finding some handy items.

They went to the charity’s warehouse on Friday to pick up supplies that had been prepared for them, including clothes, shoes, toys, a high chair, a bed protector, a learning kit for cleanliness, diapers and toiletries.

But Veronika and her mother “were very excited”, the charity said in a tweet, when they spotted the doll which was “just the same as the one she must have left behind”.

Nicola Dawes, Founder and Managing Director of Stripey Stork, said: “It was especially special to find out that this doll was the exact same one Veronika couldn’t bring from home.

“A moment of joy and connection, and it made our day when Veronika gave us a kiss as we left.”

Stripey Stork also provided Veronika and Tatyana, right, with essential supplies (Stripey Stork)

Stripey Stork has been helping families in Surrey since its inception in 2013.

It uses a model similar to a food bank to help provide essentials to families with young children and is now helping Ukrainian refugees arriving in the area.

In a tweet, the charity said: ‘We know over 700 families have been matched in Surrey and we are adjusting to accommodate any inquiries we receive.