SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — Ever since Russia invaded, many people have been showing their support for Ukraine, including a Sioux Falls bar and restaurant.
For the next two weeks, Wiley’s is holding a special fundraiser, because for the general manager, the war is personal.
“I have friends who have family over there, who I’ve talked to since this has all started,” Wiley’s General Manager Jimmy Gordon said.
Jimmy Gordon, who manages Wiley’s, just learned that one of those friends in Ukraine was killed; run over by a tank.
So Gordon wants to help the Ukrainian people any way he can.
“From now through the 20th of March we are going to be holding a fundraiser by donating $1 for every drink with Titos Handmade Vodka to different charities that are assisting people in Ukraine,” Gordon said.
Those two charities are the Global Empowerment Mission in Poland which is helping civilians escape the war and the International Foundation for Animal Welfare.
Gordon says pets are the forgotten component of this war.
“I have two fluffy children that are my world and seeing the amount of animals that are in the shelter and the people who run it are refusing to leave, because they won’t leave the dogs, and I’d probably be that person, you know, bombs and rockets going off, I don’t care I’m not leaving my dogs for anything,” Gordon said.
Customers want to help, because they see it as a worthy cause.
“I think it’s really neat that people in Sioux Falls are able to reach out and not think about just themselves, they do care about what’s going on in the world,” Kirsten Chester said.
Gordon knows his fundraiser is just a drop in the bucket, but he says he can’t just stand by and do nothing.
“You never expect something like this to happen where you live, you wouldn’t expect being here in Sioux Falls and then all of a sudden there’s rockets and bombs raining down on you, you know, you got to defend or pick up and leave and leave everything you’ve ever known,” Gordon said.
Titos, which has its Vodka for Dog People and helps rescue animals all over the world, has agreed to match whatever amount he raises.