WEST ORANGE, NJ — The West Orange Police Department recently collected their unneeded surplus personal protection equipment to donate to the Ukrainian front-line forces in their fight against invading Russian forces. The idea was suggested to the department by West Orange resident Alina Alegria, a native of Ukraine whose close friend serves in the Ukrainian army. She has been collecting supplies and sending help to the army and people of Ukraine since the beginning of the invasion. Her parents refuse to leave the country and still live in a small village near Luhansk called Novoaidar, where Alegria was born. She talks with her family in eastern Ukraine almost on a daily basis.
The donation was collected from the department’s surplus, as well as donated from active and retired officers. The collection includes bulletproof vests, flak jackets, body shields and undergarment trauma plates for a combined total of 84 items. The equipment is being donated directly to the Ukrainian Congress Committee of America, a nonprofit organization based out of New York City, who will deliver the donations directly to the freedom fighters of Ukraine.
“I am pleased to assist to see that this equipment gets to where it needs to be since many donations to our forces are stolen before reaching its intended destination,” Alegria said.
“Our department supports the Ukrainian war effort and we are glad to contribute in some small way to help that cause,” police Chief James Abbott said.
Photos Courtesy of Joseph Fagan