Photo courtesy Door County Candle Company on Facebook

STURGEON BAY — A Sturgeon Bay candle company’s effort to support the people of Ukraine has gained national attention and the company now has donated $275,000 to relief efforts.

The Door County Candle Company launched a fundraiser following the first week of the war to help the people of Ukraine and have been overwhelmed by the response.

The Door County Shore Report was one of the first to report that owner Christiana (Gorchynsky) Trapani launched the fundraiser because, “she is 100 percent Ukrainian and is so incredibly proud of my heritage.”

Since then, her story has been shared on ABC World News tonight, on Public Television and other outlets.

The company donated $150,000 to relief efforts on March 25, following an earlier donation of $125,000.

“Together, we’ve made a big difference helping those in Ukraine. One candle at a time, we’ve been able to donate over a quarter of a million dollars to Ukraine, and that will only continue,” Trapani said.

Her Sturgeon Bay area business is donating 100 percent of its profits to help those in Ukraine following the invasion by Russia.

They are offering a special 16 oz. candle in the colors of the Ukrainian flag — yellow and blue — for $29.95.

ORDER HERE

Growing up as a Ukrainian American, Trapani says she was raised with Ukrainian being her first language, which has allowed her to keep connected to friends and family who live there today. 

“As a Ukrainian-American, what’s happening in Ukraine is hitting me, and many others, deeply to my core,” she wrote. “We strongly condemn Russia’s shameful and unprovoked war. We are heartbroken, concerned and scared for all of those in Ukraine.

This special Ukraine candle is a way she feels she can make a difference and help those in need. 

After deducting the cost of shipping, materials and paying staff to make the candles, 100% of profits from this Ukraine Candle will be donated to Razom for Ukrainea Ukrainian 501 (c)(3) organization.

Razom was founded by Ukrainian-American volunteers in New York City during the 2013-14 Revolution of Dignity in Ukraine.

Razom, which means “together” in Ukrainian, believes in the enormous potential of dedicated volunteers around the world united by a single goal: to unlock the potential of Ukraine.

They work towards that mission by creating spaces where people meet, partner, and act.

Razom has maintained an open Emergency Response project since the Russian invasion of Ukraine in 2014 where they mobilized to procure medical and tactical supplies to the eastern front.

They picked up this project again in 2020 at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic to fundraise for, procure and deliver medical supplies across COVID-19 hot spots in Ukraine.

Since 2014, the Emergency Response fund has always remained open for donors so that they were in a position to act swiftly in support of Ukrainians in crisis situations.

When reports came that Russia began amassing troops on Ukraine’s borders, they began actively promoting for the Emergency Response fund again on February 18, 2022.

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By Dan Plutchak

Dan Plutchak, born and raised in Kaukauna, is cofounder of Kaukauna Community News.