CINCINNATI — You can’t turn on the television these days without seeing something about the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
Lives have been lost. Cities – including Kharkiv, Cincinnati’s sister city -- have sustained unfathomable damage. As the Ukrainians fight to keep their independence, their loved ones here are doing what they can to help. And in a world where everything global is local, complete strangers are, too.
Enter Suzy DeYoung of LaSoupe.
The non-profit rescues unused food from restaurants and grocery stores, and turns it into healthy meals for the food insecure.
That means DeYoung has cultivated relationships she’s harnessing for Pierogi for Peace.
She thought it would be a good idea to get more than 30 of her closest chef friends together to help raise money for Urkaine. She asked them to make all different pierogi fillings, and they’ve delivered.
“We have everything from duck confit from Chef Jean-Robert de Cavel to Mita’s short rib. And Mighty Good did amazing pot roast pierogi,” said DeYoung.
DeYoung says her volunteers are taking the amazing range of fillings and pairing them with dough to make thousands of pierogi for the event May 9th at OTR Stillhouse from 6 to 9 p.m.
A $100 ticket gets you beer, wine, all the pierogi you can eat, dessert, music and dancing. Proceeds go to help World Central Kitchen which is cooking for Ukrainian refugees. Money raised will also support first aid supplies for first responders there.
Sarah Dworak’s Wodka Bar is contributing a ham, potato and Swiss filling. Her family is from Ukraine so this means everything to her.
“It’s nice to know Ukraine is in people’s hearts," Dworak said. "It’s in mine always, but it’s really nice to see the outpouring of support for something dear to my heart and my family’s.”
Evgenia “Jane” Nemirovska DeSantos is from Ukraine, and is the Cincy4Ukraine President. She told us the effort to take comfort food she knows so well, and help it offer comfort, moves her to tears.
“It’s also love because every single grandma, mother, kid, grandkid who made those dumplings…they know how much love you put in it,” said Nemirovska DeSantos, “And that’s what the chefs for Cincinnati are doing.”
If you want to find tickets for Pierogi for Peace, just go to cincychefs.com.