So many of us have been watching in horror as the unfolding war on the Eastern edge of Europe has unfolded, we've watched the news and wept as we see people fleeing, cowering in the shelters and having their lives ripped apart. We've also marvelled at the bravery and tenacity of the Ukrainian people as they fight to save the country they love from Putin's army.
I've felt involved as my own son and his Ukrainian fiancé, who have been living in Kyiv for some 15 years and are now safe and able to stay in Slovenia. He has switched his web development business to help those fleeing to hosts with places for them to stay. So we've had many distressing phone calls with tales of family and friends.
Many colleagues and activists are asking if they should carry on the campaigning for the spring elections as this war unfolds. My feeling is the threat to the fledgling democracy in Ukraine should spur us on to reinforce our efforts. Certainly we need to be highlighting the trail of Russian money and influence that has pervaded our own political processes over the last few years. So yes, please do carry on with the campaigning and elect more Liberal Democrats in this region.
So whilst we send our thoughts and prayers to the Ukrainian people, please do take the message that fighting for our own democracy is one of the best ways you can support them. And if you can, please do donate here. https://donation.dec.org.uk/ukraine-humanitarian-appeal and if you can offer space to refugees here https://www.ukraineshelter.com/en
Catherine Bearder, Chair South Central Region Liberal Democrats
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