FRESNO, Calif. (KSEE/KGPE) – A Fresno artist originally from Ukraine said she simply couldn’t see the war going on, and see her home country in need and not do anything.
Now she’s been able to help by raising $6,000 for doctors without borders in Ukraine.
“For me as an artist I thought, when it’s so little you can do, art can bring us all together, and together we can make a difference, ” Mariana Holladay said.
She was born and raised in Ukraine but has called Fresno home for years.
Once she saw Russian troops invade her home country, she knew she had to do something.
“For people living their everyday life and now being displaced, without jobs, without a home to go to, for their relatives to get killed and it’s really horrific,” she added.
On Thursday she organized a silent auction, featuring art from dozens of artists to raise money for doctors without borders in Ukraine. With dozens of pieces of artwork to bid on, she said they are hopeful they can raise money for life-saving medical care.
The artwork was priced from $25 to hundreds or even thousands of dollars.
Holladay said she’s hoping this goes a long way.
“It hurts so much to see them suffering,” Holladay said.
Artist David Saunders said he was looking for ways to help Ukraine, as he has many friends from the country.
Saunders said once he saw Holladay’s event, he knew he wanted to donate some of his art.
“I see so much in the news about the terrible things that are happening there and feeling very helpless and the only way I can make any change that I can contribute with is to donate my artwork,” he added.
While Holladay knows this doesn’t put an end to the suffering people are experiencing day in and day out in Ukraine, she said it’s the best she can do.
“I love my country and I love the people of Ukraine,” she said.