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Santa Squad in Pittston collecting goods for Ukraine

The Greater Pittston Santa Squad is collecting donations for families and soldiers in Ukraine.

PITTSTON, Pa. — Santa with his bag of goodies isn't normally something you see on March 1, but the Greater Pittston Santa Squad workshop is hard at work.

"We're really busy right now. We decided to team up with Fr. Andrii (Dumnych) again at St. Michael's Church and collect for Ukraine. So that's what we're in the middle of doing," said Greater Pittston Squad Founder Tony Marranca.

This is the second time Marranca and the Squad are doing a donation drive like this. They did one a year ago when the war in Ukraine started.

"No one asked for war at their doorstep. So, we were hoping it would be a quick resolution, but it looks like we're in this with the Ukrainians for the long run," said Marranca.

On Tuesdays and Fridays from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. until March 10, the Santa Squad will accept donations at the former Seton Catholic High School Gymnasium on William Street in Pittston.

"We're looking for warm clothing, hygiene products," explained Marranca. "Anything you think that a refugee family or even soldiers on the frontline with some of this will undoubtedly go to can use in a survival situation."

The Squad will pass everything along to Fr. Andrii Dumnych with St. Michael the Archangel Byzantine Catholic Church in Pittston. He moved to the U.S. from Ukraine in 2019. Fr. Dumnych tells Newswatch 16 that many items will go to Eastern Ukraine.

"I'm really shocked how much people support Ukrainians, and they really touched me and push me to do this more and more with more energy. And also, this a good witness for everybody who we really are," said Fr. Dumnych.

See more videos on our area's connection to the Crisis in Ukraine.  

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