A Dad's Emotional Plea: 'We Left All Our Lego in Ukraine'

Donations pour in after Igor Sidorov's ask on Facebook for his 11-year-old son
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 11, 2022 7:53 AM CDT
Ukrainian Dad Asks for Legos for Son, Donations Pour In
Various Lego parts sit ready to sell on Nov. 29, 2021, inside the It's A Block Party store in Indianapolis.   (Mykal McEldowney/The Indianapolis Star via AP)

While much of the coverage of Russia's invasion of Ukraine has focused on the destruction and carnage, there've also been some more "poignant [glimpses] of what people have lost and left behind," per Irish broadcaster RTE. Case in point: 11-year-old Andrii Sidorov, who had to abandon his beloved Lego collection when he and his dad, Igor Sidorov, fled Kyiv in February. Per the Washington Post, the two, along with Andrii's 8-year-old brother, left Ukraine for Vienna on Feb. 23, the day before the war started, while the boys' two older teen brothers stayed behind, as did their mom, to fight against Russia. From Vienna, the trio made their way to Ireland, which the Post notes has waived visa requirements for Ukrainians and taken in more than 5,500 refugees.

But while the Sidorovs found physical safety in their new home in Galway, Andrii missed his thousands of Legos, which had served as his favorite way to pass the time practically since the time he'd learned to walk. And so Sidorov headed online to some local Facebook groups to ask if anyone had any spare Legos they could give to his son. "We left all our Lego in Ukraine. Help me please!" he pleaded in his post. "We need any [Lego], any size and color in any quantity." Just one day later, sets both used and new started pouring in to the hotel where the Sidorovs are staying, while some generous parties from as far away as Canada have been inquiring on how they can send even more, per Brick Fanatics.

"There is Lego all around me," Sidorov tells the Post, which notes nearly 50 sets have so far arrived. "In the reception [area], in the room, everywhere." As Sidorov contemplates his family's future—he says he's not sure if they'll return to Ukraine one day or remain in Ireland for good—at least he's happy to now see his young Lego creator now "always smiling." One of Andrii's first builds with his new Legos: an Irish flag, which he posted a picture of on Instagram. "Glory to Ireland!" the grateful boy wrote in his post (Andrii also has a YouTube channel where he documents his creations). "Thanks to this great and incredibly friendly country! Thanks to all these wonderful and very kind people with very big hearts!" Meanwhile, the Lego Foundation itself has made a $16 million donation to help support families in Ukraine, per RTE. (More uplifting news stories.)

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