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DES MOINES, Iowa – The devastation Ukraine has already suffered is prompting Iowans to take action.

Vinton AJ Hookes Jr. and Nathan Quewea were just kids when war forced them to leave their home country of LIberia, and eventually come to Iowa as refugees. Now, they want to show solidarity with Ukrainian refugees through a march. 

“No one should go through that,” Hookes, chairman of the march, said. “You know, you’re living your normal life, all of a sudden you are not in school, you are displaced in another country, and you don’t have much food to eat. Parents don’t have enough means to cater to their children, so it’s very sad.”

The ‘Peace March in Solidarity with Ukraine’ will take place on Saturday, March 26 at 2:00 p.m. It will start at Western Gateway Park located at 1205 Locust Street and end at the Iowa State Capitol.

Their goal is to raise money for the refugees, as well as ask lawmakers for more help.

“We hope that we will be able to petition our governor for Iowa to be one of the first states in the United States that will accept Ukrainian refugees,” Quewea said, “because we know they will be able to rebuild their lives how we are able to rebuild our own lives. And we are even able to give back to our country in Liberia, and these people will be able to give back to their own country too.”

The march is being put on by Coffee FC, a group of African immigrants who live in Des Moines, as well as Africans in Iowa for Empowerment and those from the local Ukrainian community.

For more information, go to Iowa Stands With Ukraine on Facebook.