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Polish woman with Colorado ties shelters Ukrainian refugees fleeing across the border

Dorota Hawryla lives just a few miles from the Poland-Ukraine border.

DENVER — Refugees from Ukraine are still fleeing into neighboring countries, Poland being one of them. 

A woman with ties to Colorado who lives on the border has opened up her bed and breakfast to those who escaped the invasion. 

Credit: Dorota Hawryla

"I just try to do the best I can for them," said Dorota Hawryla. 

She lives in Lutowiska, Poland, just a few miles from the Ukrainian border. 

She spoke to 9NEWS from her home and bed and breakfast, where she is sheltering 11 refugee women and children. Hawryla expects more people to come.

"You never know when somebody going to call me. What time it's going to be, what I'm supposed to do, nothing?" she said. "I have to be ready 24 hours a day."

Ready to drive to the border to pick up Ukrainians fleeing the Russian invasion. 

"We're grateful, gratitude for Polish people and for [Ms.] Dorota especially," said Olga Chernova. 

Chernova left her hometown of Mykolaiv, Ukraine with her children and mother. She's been staying with Dorota now for a week. 

"Our children, our girls... we are safety now," she said.

Dorota's daughter lives here in Colorado and her coworker, Ryan Grabowski, is helping to raise money for her

"It's very hard," said Hawryla. "It's not easy way but I try you know? I try all the time."

Instead of just eating donated canned food, Hawryla has made her Ukrainian guests homemade meals and they return the favor by helping her around the house. 

Credit: Dorota Hawryla

"A little girl and mother they go to Germany," said Hawryla. "They not even had enough money for gas or something. I gave them you know. I just try to help people wherever I want. If I have extra money or not."

No one knows when this will be over, but for now Hawryla is keeping her doors open for those who need help. 

"We love everybody who wants to help us," she said.

Grabowski still has a fundraiser going for Hawryla. He plans to send all of it directly to Dorota and the Ukrainian refugees she is helping. 

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