Celebrating Mother’s Day in Ukraine on West Wittering Beach

Ukrainian Mothers Day Picnic

Last Sunday 8th May was Mother’s Day in Ukraine

With so many mothers and children now being hosted by amazing local families; I felt it would be nice to recognise Ukrainian Mother’s Day.  I wanted to give Ukrainian mothers a place where they could come and meet other brave families that have left everything and made the journey here.  The beach seemed a perfect spot as the children could run free and everyone could bring a picnic and relax in a beautiful setting.

The West Wittering Beach Estate team were amazing and immediately supported my idea.  When asked how many I thought there might be I replied that…” with the 17 Ukrainians that I knew were already here on the Peninsula and their host families coming too there would probably be about 25”.


…How wrong I was!

We had over 160 people attend. They brought their picnics, chairs, tables, rugs, games….and one family even brought their portable BBQ.

The sun shone and there was lots of laughter to be heard as people connected and shared their experiences.  There were tears too…but lots of arms were ready to hug and hold and make them feel welcome and safe.

The support and willingness to help make this event so memorable was overwhelming.  A huge, big thank you to West Wittering Estate for supplying the venue. And the same to the Greetings House card shop in East Wittering, they donated blue and yellow helium filled balloons that flew high to welcome all our Ukrainian families.

Written by Jenny Gray founder of the Peninsula refugee support group.

If you would like to get involved in supporting local Ukrainian host families, please email: peninsulareugeehelp@gmail.com