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Generous community support for the very young in Ukraine

“I’m flabbergasted"
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Posted at 7:07 PM, Mar 10, 2022
and last updated 2022-03-10 19:07:01-05

TOWN OF TONAWANDA, NY (WKBW) — Quick and very generous support poured into a local community organization in the Town of Tonawanda for those in need in Ukraine.

The Ken-Ton Closet serves as a collection site for baby items. The Ken-Ton-Closet is partnering with the Town of Tonawanda Police Department and Erie County District Attorney’s Office.

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Baby items donated.

“I brought down some diapers and wipes, some food pouches and protein bars,” described Kim Bayer, Tonawanda resident.

Bayer says as a mother of two children, watching the atrocities in Ukraine, especially affecting mothers and babies, she felt compelled to help.

“Just trying to do something — to help out those people and what they are going through, especially young mothers and young children,” remarked Bayer.

“These are absolute necessity items for those Ukrainian children and mothers right now,” Sharon Cianciosi, volunteer, Ken-Ton Closet.

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Baby food collected.

Cianicosi says this quickly came together Wednesday agreeing to partner with the town of Tonawanda police as a drop-off site she says she's overwhelmed by the support.

“I’m flabbergasted! When I walked in this morning, I think we had these three bags and so within two and a half hours we have collected that and people just keep walking in with stuff,” noted Cianicosi.

The items were all collected between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. Thursday:

  • Diapers (size 1-6)
  • Baby wipes
  • Baby food (only pouches)
  • Formula
  • Protein bars

“We put a couple of videos on Facebook and within 45 minutes my office was filling up with diapers, wipes — it was very humbling,” Joseph Milosich, captain, Town of Tonawanda Police.

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Baby items donated.

Captain Milosich says he quickly organized this one-day collection effort after the Erie County District attorney's office reached out to help collect the baby items.

“All of these items were going to be collected and then delivered to Ukrainian Orthodox Church in Cheektowaga,” said Captain Milosich.

“Are you surprised at what's coming in already?” Buckley asked. “The support has been overwhelming,” replied Milosich.

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Baby items were collected at Tonawanda Police station.

The police captain also has many of the items stacked up in his office.

“Initially we were just looking for department participation, so officers and detectives, and above have donated — a number of items themselves, but we wanted to take it a little bit further and we asked for help from our community,” remarked Milosich.