DES MOINES, Iowa — Iowans for Ukrainians is holding a Sunflower Gala to raise money for Ukraine. They hope to raise $20,000 at the gala.

The group started raising money for Ukraine back in the spring with bake sales. Over the course of three bake sales, they raised $25,000. Now Iowans for Ukrainians is officially registered as a 501(c)(3) charity.

With the money they have raised, the nonprofit has provided everything from bulletproof vests and water packs for soldiers to diapers and baby formula for Ukrainian mothers.

Katie Seifert, one of the event organizers of the Sunflower Gala, said that Iowans for Ukrainians is excited to share and celebrate Ukrainian culture at the gala.

“I like to brand this as not your typical gala as it’s going to be filled with a lot of cultural activities as well as presenters,” Seifert said. “We have a Ukrainian dance troupe coming and joining us from the Twin Cities. We have two Ukrainian singers who will share beautiful traditional Ukrainian music with us.”

Seifert said the support from the community has been heartwarming and shows how generous Iowans can be.

“It’s amazing because it reminds me and my fellow board members that Iowans really care. Prior to being involved in this, I didn’t realize the extent of the eastern European community in Iowa and how personal this feels to them. and so it just feels so powerful to know that Iowans really stand with Ukrainians,” Seifert said.

The Sunflower Gala is sold out, however, Iowans for Ukrainians plans to host more events in the future as the war continues.

To learn more about how you can support Iowans for Ukrainians, visit their website.