Coffee shop teams up with Hawaii artists to raise funds for Ukrainian refugees

A local coffee shop and artists are hoping to bring some relief to families affected by the war in Ukraine.
Published: Apr. 1, 2022 at 5:35 PM HST|Updated: Apr. 1, 2022 at 5:41 PM HST
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - A local coffee shop and artists teaming up to bring some relief to families affected by the war in Ukraine.

Island Brew Coffeehouse and local artists are raising money for families displaced by the war.

“I know, this is a very small effort, but every bit helps,” said Rafael Baez, co-owner of Island Brew Coffeehouse. “And so, we’re just trying to be a part of the solution.”

Baez said they initially had a different fundraiser in mind until they saw Russia’s invasion of Ukraine unfold. “We just felt compelled to switch gears and make it about raising money for the humanitarian efforts,” said Baez.

Tickets for the evening event are $200 each. All proceeds go toward helping people in Ukraine.

“If for just ticket sales, we can get at least close to $5,000, then I’d be pretty happy and we’re almost there,” said Baez.

About 20 art pieces are up for auction, and 30% of those proceeds will go toward humanitarian aid.

“I’m Cuban American, too so we had to flee a country where my family came from,” said artist Ruben Aira. “And so, I have a place in my heart for refugees.”

Aira said he was working on a project with an artist out of Ukraine.

“She was almost done, and she was she was like, I don’t know if I’m going to finish, I gotta go. there’s bombing,” Aira said. You know, it’s the craziest thing.”

“You don’t imagine that it’s going to happen to people, you know.”

Lara Palafox has family in Ukraine ― some on the frontline. She said she’s touched by the community’s efforts.

She managed to get a hold of one of her cousins.

“She was in tears, just saying, thank you, thank you, thank you,” Palafox said.

“Just to hear your voice, just to know that people care, helps lift our spirits up when we’re hiding under the ground, trying to save our children from bombs. It makes such a difference.”

Copyright 2022 Hawaii News Now. All rights reserved.