‘I Will Help You': San Diegan Steps Up to Help Ukrainians at US-Mexico Border

Since the war started, Moores has helped 12 families get out of Ukraine and into the U.S.

NBC Universal, Inc.

Born and raised in Ukraine, Natalie Moores still can’t believe the place she loves the most is now the site of an active war zone.

“I've taken my daughter back to Ukraine every year since she was born,” said Moores. “And I was devastated when I realized that it was probably not a place that she would ever see again.”

Moores moved to the U.S. when she was 19 years old, but her father stayed behind. When the war started she knew she had to get him out.

“At that point, early on in the war, there were no visas, there were no ways I could bring him here to protect him,” said Moores. “I started looking at everything and our last desperate try was to bring him to the border here in Tijuana and see if he could receive humanitarian parole.”

As a business lawyer, Moores had little knowledge about immigration law, but she was quick to learn what she needed to get her dad asylum in the U.S. That’s where her journey to help other families began.

“I rolled up my sleeves and said, 'I will help you,'” said Moores. “I started by preparing their paperwork and they were so afraid and, you know, just not familiar with the process, so I started meeting these families in Tijuana, holding their hand and crossing the border with them.”

Since the war started, Moores has helped 12 families get out of Ukraine and into the U.S.

“I have two options: one is to sit and watch the news and cry, which I would be doing if I wasn't being active, or I can do this,” said Moores.

Once she gets them across the border, she helps set them up with nonprofits and individuals offering resources. But Moores says nothing would be possible without the many groups offering her their support.

“The outreach of help and support has been incredible,” said Moores.

Moores has been teaming up with Jewish Family Services and the House of Ukraine to help these families. Providing families a strand of kindness and hope even in dark times.

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