PORTLAND, Ore (KOIN) — A Portland florist is buying sunflowers faster than she can sell them to help Ukraine as Russian forces continue to invade the country.
Laura Gifford Kerr, the owner of Gifford’s Flowers, is donating 100% of its sunflower sales in March to send medical aid to Ukraine. So far, she has raised $625 for Direct Relief, a nonprofit humanitarian organization that provides emergency assistance – including disaster relief – domestically and internationally.
After the business posted about the fundraiser on its newsletter and social media, the community answered the call.
“We sold out first week really fast,” said Gifford Kerr. “In the second week, we were thinking ahead and ordering enough. We’ve been selling out. By the end of the week, they’re all gone.”
The sunflower is also the national flower of Ukraine, which is why the owner decided to sell the flower for the fundraiser.
Gifford Kerr hopes to raise $1000 by March 31.
“All our customers are always really giving, so I’m not surprised at the community and especially with what we’ve been going through here and around the world even before Ukraine,” she said. “People are just naturally becoming more understanding, more compassionate, more giving – just a new way of life.”
When asked why it’s important to pay attention to what’s happening in Ukraine, she said, “Because even though it’s far away, it’s another country just like we are, and it can happen anywhere.”
KOIN 6 News also put together a list of resources for those wishing to help the Eastern European nation.