Houstonian born in Ukraine gathers medical supplies to send overseas

HOUSTON – Michael Bleyzer stocked cardboard boxes with a handful of medical supplies: gauze, tourniquets, bandages. They’re items to treat trauma and to be sent to Bleyzer’s native country of Ukraine.

“It’s being bombed every day,” Bleyzer said.

Bleyzer, who was born in Kharkiv, and moved to Houston in 1978, owns and operates The Bleyzer Foundation, a non-profit development organization that helps to promote business development in countries worldwide – including Ukraine. He has employees on the ground in the war-torn nation, fighting to defend itself from the advance of Russian troops.

“My family. My friends. A lot of our employees are in Kharkiv right now,” he said. “Every day, several times a day, we’re trying to understand this if they’re still alive.”

His heart is in Ukraine; its beat, that of urgent percussive packing boxes filled with medical supplies to help those fighting to help themselves.

”We had to do something. We couldn’t just stand by and watch this horrible thing. So, we set up a fundraiser and our foundation is raising capital to help Ukraine,” he explained.

Their efforts included volunteering to pack medical supplies to be shipped to Ukraine, through the work of Medical Bridges, a Houston-based organization that collects and delivers medical supplies to countries in need.

“We’re sending one whole pallet worth $33,000 worth of needed medical aid to Ukraine and we have ten more that are headed to Poland,” said marketing manager for Medical Bridges Claudette Ferro.

Ferro said Medical Bridges gets its supplies donated from medical facilities in the Texas Medical Center, as well as facilities in Austin and San Antonio.

“We pick up their excess medical supplies. They donate it to us and then we have volunteers and team members that will sort [and] pack,” Ferro said.

For more, visit MedicalBridges.org.

About the Author:

Emmy and Edward R. Murrow award-winning journalist. NOLA born and bred, though #HoustonStrong, with stops in Minnesota, New York, Massachusetts, and Connecticut in along the way.