Images of the car and its journey from Wales to Ukraine. Credit: Welsh Aid for Ukraine and Stephen Simmonds

Donated car travels 1,700 miles from Cardiff to Kyiv to help injured Ukrainian soldiers and wheelchair users

‘We hope it will serve the people of Ukraine as well as it has served us,’ says Rosie Moriarty-Simmonds

A CAR donated by a couple from Cardiff has made it all the way to Ukraine to help transport wheelchair users and injured soldiers.

Dr Aled Jones drove the specially-adapted Chrysler Grand Voyager roughly 1,700 miles to Kyiv through the ice and snow of the Ukrainian winter to deliver medical aid to volunteers for the Fourth Rapid Reaction Brigade.

The vehicle, which had 115,000 miles on the clock before the long trip East, is now being used to assist disabled people and transport wounded soldiers to hospital.

The 2006 3.3litre automatic was donated to charity Welsh Aid for Ukraine (WAFU) by Rosie Moriarty-Simmonds, 63, and her husband, Stephen Simmonds.

Image: Rosie Moriarty-Simmonds and her husband Credit: Welsh Aid for Ukraine and Stephen Simmonds

“We hope it will serve the people of Ukraine as well as it has served us,” said Mrs Moriarty-Simmonds, who was born without arms and legs.

“We are delighted the car will find a new purpose – for however long that might be.”

The couple had owned the vehicle – which they nicknamed ‘Beauty’ – for 17 years and initially tried to sell it received no interest from buyers.

It has full-side entry manual or powered wheelchairs and also comes with an additional set of winter tyres.

Image: The car in Ukraine Credit: Welsh Aid for Ukraine

“We were faced with the very real possibility of having to scrap it,” said Mrs Moriarty-Simmonds.

“That would have been sacrilege, given how well it had been looked after for the last 17 years.”

Her husband, Mr Simmonds, said: “We hope that it continues to give good service to the people of Ukraine, with hope that the conflict will soon come to an end.”

Credit: this video contains photographs and videos by Stephen Simmonds and Welsh Aid for Ukraine

In April 2022, WalesOnline reported on how Dr Aled Jones drove three ambulances to Ukraine to deliver emergency healthcare.

Mrs Moriarty-Simmonds was awarded an OBE by the Queen in 2015 for her lifelong disability rights campaigning.

Find out more about her life and achievements here.