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Cupcakes for Ukraine: Montreal duo bake up sweet idea for war-torn country

Click to play video: 'Cupcakes for Ukraine: Montreal duo bake up sweet idea for war-torn country'
Cupcakes for Ukraine: Montreal duo bake up sweet idea for war-torn country
WATCH: Cupcakes for Ukraine: Montreal duo bake up sweet idea for war-torn country – Mar 5, 2022

High school student Sophia Alu and her stepmom Lindsay Pozihun have been baking up a storm this past week, making hundreds of cupcakes.

The goal is to raise money for the people of Ukraine following Russia’s invasion and continued aggression in that country.

“It’s kind of unbelievable,” said Pozihun. “It’s hard to watch the news. It’s so emotional.”

Read more: Canada will match donations to Red Cross for Ukraine up to $10M

Pozihun explained she’s part Ukrainian and although her family has been in Canada for generations, she still feels a strong attachment to the community.

“We still celebrate some traditions … and we always have some traditional dishes at family get-togethers.”

And while Pozihun’s family is safe in Canada, she has many friends in the Ukrainian community who have loved ones still in Ukraine.

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“Chatting with them this week has been really eye-opening and sad,” she said. “That’s kind of why we started to try and help in any way that we can, even if it’s small to start with.”

Read more: Animal Food Bank raising funds to support animals in Ukraine

Pozihun’s day job is as an inspector for the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission, but both she and her stepdaughter share a passion for baking.

“It’s something that we do as a hobby for birthdays and special events,” Pozihun said.

So putting their skills in the kitchen to use for a good cause just came naturally.

“I like to bake a lot, so I really wanted to do something to help and it seemed like the perfect way to do that,” said Alu.

Read more: Family-run Ukrainian deli in Montreal offers strength as Russian invasion continues

The two have already sold hundreds of cupcakes with an initial goal of raising $1,000.

“But it looks like we’re going to far exceed that,” said Pozihun.

Cupcakes come in packs of six with three vanilla and three chocolate cakes and are sold by donation, meaning there is no fixed price. The vanilla icing that tops the treats is decorated in the colours of the Ukrainian flag.

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Click to play video: 'Quebecers reach out to loved ones in Ukraine'
Quebecers reach out to loved ones in Ukraine

All proceeds are split between the Parish of the Assumption of Blessed Mary — a Ukrainian Catholic Church located in Montreal’s Saint-Michel borough — and the Canada-Ukraine Foundation Humanitarian Appeal.

The church is collecting donations and will soon be welcoming Ukrainian refugee families, according to Pozihun.

Read more: Quebec preparing to welcome Ukrainian refugees

While baking cupcakes may just be a small gesture, Alu and Pozihun know they’re making a difference.

“We’ve already seen kind of a ripple effect from the initiative,” said Pozihun, adding that one of her customers has even reached out to host a refugee family.

“It goes far beyond cupcakes, which is really heartwarming.”

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