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Ukrainian-owned coffee business in Lexington teams with Catholic Priest to aid fleeing refugees.

Karyn Czar

With the help of a Kentucky priest, a Ukrainian born shop owner who came to this country as a refugee herself, is giving back to those in her homeland who are trapped by war. Karyn Czar reports.

In the New Living Translation of the Bible, Psalm 90 verse, 12 reads “Teach us to realize the brevity of life, so that we may grow in wisdom.” Those words are scribed on the wall at Brevede Coffee Company on Manchester Street in Lexington.

“When we opened Brevede, Brevede is a passion mission project to support missions globally and locally.”

Little did Viorika Kopets know when she opened her shop with a mission to help charities around the world that she would be helping people in her homeland. Kopets’ family fled Ukraine when the Soviet Union fell. She was ten. Now, grown and the owner of Brevede, she’s sending proceeds from her shop to help people from her birth country who are trapped because of the war.

“Especially people who have no finances. They’re just staying in Moldova and now someone needs to take care of them. We can’t get containers of things to them quick enough either because it takes about two months for a container to get there so even if we collected something it wouldn’t get there fast enough. So the finances is the way we are getting things quick. They’re purchasing things on the ground as they need them.”

Fr. Jim Sichko, a Papal Mission of Mercy for the Roman Catholic Church helped the cause. He paid for all the orders made on Monday and Kopets said there was a steady line of customers.

“We had lines since we opened our doors. It’s wonderful to see that because we know that the reason people are here is there are with us.”

All proceeds will benefit Send Me Ministry.

Karyn Czar joined the WUKY News team July 1, 2013, but she's no stranger to radio.