Midcoast family planting seeds of hope for Ukraine

Wed, 05/04/2022 - 1:00pm

    As the brutal war in Ukraine drags on into its third month, it’s begun to recede towards the back of the news cycle and public consciousness. But the wanton killing of civilians and the utter destruction of the country by Russian forces continues unabated.

    The people of Ukraine need international help now more than ever. Which is why an organization formed by a Midcoast family is asking Mainers to help provide humanitarian support by planting Maine-bred sunflower seeds.

    All the donations will go to Razom Ukraine, an organization founded in 2014 when Russia invaded Eastern Ukraine and Crimea. They provide essential humanitarian aid directly to victims on the ground in the country.

    For a cash or Venmo donation ($10 minimum suggested due to the costs of providing the seeds and packaging), Maine for Ukraine and its retail store partners provide perennial sunflower favorite, Johnny’s Seeds Sunrich Provence sunflower seeds.

    The sunflower is the national symbol of Ukraine. Maine for Ukraine’s founders, Nora, Iris and Desmond Conlin of Boothbay, and their dad, Robert, of Wiscasset, decided the best way to provide support and express solidarity with the Ukrainian people was through planting sunflowers.

    They’ve started an Instagram page - Maine-For-Ukraine - and are asking people to take photos of their sunflowers once they bloom and upload them to the page to demonstrate their ongoing support and solidarity for the victims of the war.

    The seeds with the Maine For Ukraine logo can be found on store counters at Boothbay Harbor House of Pizza, Nathan’s Pharmacy in Boothbay Harbor, Ames True Value Hardware in Wiscasset, Now You’re Cooking in Bath, Mae’s Cafe and Bakery in Bath, Morning Glory Natural Foods in Brunswick and Big Top Deli in Brunswick.