Arlington Community Donates More Than $32,000 to Sister Cities United: Aid for Ukraine Campaign
By Susan Schrock, Office of Communication
Posted on May 11, 2022, May 11, 2022

The Arlington community joined together to raise more than $32,000 to aid Ukrainian refugees currently seeking safe haven in Arlington’s long-time German Sister City, Bad Königshofen.

The City of Arlington launched the Sister Cities United: Aid for Ukraine community donation campaign on March 22 after learning that Bad Königshofen, which is home to fewer than 7,000 residents, had opened its doors to hundreds of people, including approximately 50 children, who fled violence in their home country of Ukraine. The Arlington community, including local businesses and organizations, city employees and even students, quickly embraced the fundraising effort, making donations ranging from $5 to $5,000.

Arlington Mayor Jim Ross, surrounded by the Arlington Sister Cities organization members, presented a ceremonial check and a special proclamation thanking the community for its kindness and generosity during the May 11 City Council evening meeting. 

“Like we’ve done many times throughout our history, Arlington residents have come together again to make a difference,” Ross said. “The $32,000 raised by our community will help these refugees get the food and resources they desperately need during a time of turmoil. I also want to thank our Sister City, whose friendship has remained “Solid as a Rock” for more than 70 years.”

The City of Arlington’s call to action captured the attention and generosity of all ages throughout our community.

The Pearcy STEM Academy Student Council was among the many who participated in Sister Cities United. The students raised money through the council’s annual Kid’s Night Out event to benefit the campaign as well as local charitable organizations, including Mission Arlington and the Arlington Life Shelter.

“The Student Council donated one thousand dollars for the Sister Cities United: Aid to Ukraine because they saw that Ukraine needed help and thought a donation could help many people,” said Student Council Sponsor Karissa Johnston.

Matthew Loh with The LOH Foundation said his family was moved to support the campaign and provide help to the Ukrainian refugees and their children.

“The Loh family were once refugees in search of a better life and the American Dream. Thank you City of Arlington for the opportunity to support the Sister Cities United campaign and for helping us carry out The LOH Foundation’s mission of spreading Love, creating Opportunities, and giving Hope to all! Praying for peace in Ukraine,” Loh said.

Arlington-based First Rate, Inc. made a generous donation after learning about the fundraising campaign through its friendship with the Sister Cities of Arlington organization, which was among the first to pledge its support.

“We've been partnering with other humanitarian efforts for the refugees,” said David A. Stone, cofounder of First Rate. “As a citizen of Arlington, we want to help Arlington partner with our Sister City to serve the refugees.”

In addition to the donations, students at Arlington ISD’s Pearcy STEM Academy, Duff Elementary, Jones Academy of Fine Arts and Dual Language and Corey Academy of Fine Arts and Dual Language created beautiful pieces of artwork. These included painted and drawn sunflowers, rainbows, flags and messages of peace, encouragement and hope. The City mailed the students’ artwork to Bad Königshofen earlier this month to help boost the spirit of the refugees there. Photos of the artwork were displayed during the May 11 City Council meeting. 

“Our class is currently learning symbols, and this project was a great way to show the kids how powerful art is,” Samantha Uribe, Corey Elementary art teacher, said in the Arlington ISD article about the project. “They made sure to use images to portray hope, kindness and love from our school. I’m so glad we got the opportunity to use art to reach beyond our local community.”

With only two days to complete the project, the teachers found a way to incorporate it into their lessons. They emphasized social awareness and how to make a difference in the community. The kids were thrilled to take part in such a fulfilling project. Many used paint, colors and markers to convey messages of hope. Click here to watch the Arlington ISD students share their message of love to the Ukrainian refugees.

“These kids are so gracious and eager to help all the time,” said Duff Elementary teacher Diana Andro. “We’ve been talking about Texans making a difference, and this is an extension of that discussion for them. Even in their young lives, they understand they can make a difference, too.”

Children from the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Tarrant County in Arlington also sent handwritten and decorated cards to the Ukrainian children.

Sister Cities United AId for Ukraine

Bad Königshofen, Sister City, Acts of Kindness, Support Youth and Families, Arlington ISD
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