A ferry of aid will leave the Isle of Wight for Moldova on Friday night.

An artic lorry, stocked with clothing, food, toiletries, survival tents and more will take a few days to reach the country which neighbours war-torn Ukraine. It is where many refugees are arriving, forced from their homes by the Russian invasion.

Clothes are not needed, but dried and tinned foods and bathroom products are now being sought.

Scroll down for a full list of Isle of Wight drop off points and for video on the Ukraine aid effort...

Helping lead the Isle of Wight's response to the crisis is Victoria Dunford, who runs MAD-Aid.

For years, the charity has been taking old medical equipment and other items from the UK to her Phoenix Centre in Riscani, which supports disabled Moldovans.

Now, that centre is housing mothers and children fleeing their homes across the border, some stopping for a short time before heading to family and friends elsewhere in Europe, others with nowhere else to go.

Victoria was in Moldova when war started on Thursday morning (February 24).

She told the County Press it was not initially clear what was happening: "We heard the explosion - the echo.

"I woke up at 6.30am to the sound of the bomb, thinking it was a thunderstorm. I found out an hour later we were in a war.

"On Thursday evening, I managed to drive back to the UK. I left family in Moldova. I was debating where I would be more useful and I could be more useful here."

CLICK HERE to donate via MAD-Aid's Facebook appeal. It will help pay for transport.

Isle of Wight County Press: Aid for Ukraine arrives at the County Press office in Newport.Aid for Ukraine arrives at the County Press office in Newport.

Aid is already pouring into drop-off points around the Island, including to the old library building opposite MAD-Aid's East Cowes base and the Isle of Wight County Press's building in Newport's Brannon Way.

In East Cowes, 11, York Avenue is accepting donations between 9am and 5pm today (Thursday).

It is a joint effort between Red Funnel, East Cowes Town Council and the Isle of Wight Council.

Town councillor Cameron Palin said: "It's phenomenal the amount we've received. The Island community's really come together."

East Cowes Councillor Karl Love said: "We've had a large delivery from an outdoor camping centre - everything from petrol cans to sleeping bangs, to tents and air bags.

"We could do with tinned food with ring pulls and the sort of things you wouldn't think of normally."

East Cowes Mayor Tracy Reardon said "We want to say thanks to everyone helping to organise this. We all feel passionately and just want to help."

What aid and donations are needed for Ukraine?

Items needed include...

  • Bandages, plasters, disinfectants and tourniquets
  • Blankets, duvets, pillowcases, sleeping bags and thermal blankets
  • Personal hygiene items - soaps, shampoos, sanitary napkins, tampons, toothbrushes and toothpaste.
  • Baby bottles, formula milk, baby jars and tubes
  • Long lasting food
  • Torches, batteries, flasks and hand warmers
  • Disposable cups, plates, bowls and cutlery
  • Mattresses and camp beds
  • Reflective vests
  • Toys for children - preferably small ones, colouring books and crayons.

Read more: Isle of Wight MP Bob Seely speaks Ukrainian before PMQs VIDEO

MAD-Aid's Victoria Dunford said those seeking shelter are scared and exhausted: "It's terrifying. There are a lot of tears.

"It's a real shock. There's no logic to anything that's happening.

"Everyone left everything behind. Some of them grabbed a suitcase, or their documents and all the money they had.

"They don't know where they're going. They're going into the unknown.

She says many people in the region fear Russian forces will not stop Ukraine.

Read more: Isle of Wight man in Ukraine helping children in war zones

"We don't know what Putin's going to do"

Victoria said: "People in Moldova are terrified as well because we're not the safest place.

"We don't know what Putin's going to do and we are under the same radar as Ukraine.

"We're vulnerable but everybody's keeping quite positive.

We are concentrating on helping Ukrainian refugees, but everybody in Moldova is cautious because they may be refugees themselves tomorrow."

Red Funnel has provided a free crossing for the aid lorry, on Friday evening.

From there, it will travel to Moldova and then goods will be transferred into small vans in a bid to get it over the border to those who have been unable to leave.

Items that cannot be transported will be used to help Ukrainian refugees in Moldova.

"Pray for the Ukranian people," said Victoria.

Ukraine aid drop off points on the Isle of Wight

Bembridge: Right At Home (218318) — 7 High Street. Available for donations 8.30am-4pm. 

Binstead: Binstead Stepping Stones Preschool (562341) at the top of Hazlemere Avenue, is open for donations Monday-Friday, 9am-3pm. 

Cowes: Church of St John the Baptist, Northwood — items can be dropped off between 10.30am and 4pm. 

East Cowes: MAD Aid (200648), based at 11 York Avenue, is accepting donations between 9am and 5pm until Friday March 4. 

Queengate Foundation Primary School (292872). 

Gunville: A residential address at 146 Gunville Road has a bin outside with Ukrainian flags which can have items dropped into it.

Gurnard: All Saints Church (294913) — items can be dropped off between 10.30am and 4pm. 

Newport: JJ's Take-Out in whitepit Lane (717557) — Either donate via area under takeaway or via a driver if having food delivered. 

True Vine Church, based at 26a High Street, is asking for cardboard boxes and tape and is open 11am-4pm Monday to Saturday. 

Orchard House Care Home (520022) — 189 Fairlee Road is now a drop-off point. 

County Press office - Brannon House, 123 Pyle Street - Weekdays, 9am to 4.30pm.

Ryde: Items can be dropped to Urban Saints on Oakhill Road (811118). 

Ryde Elim Church (615965) on Albert street: Thursdays 9.30am-2.30pm or Fridays 9.30am-12pm. Ryde Veterans Hub — 162 High Street. 

Ryde Academy (567331) — Pell Lane. 

Ventnor: The Green Room (857848): Salisbury Gardens, Dudley Road — 9am-4pm, Monday to Friday. 

Fabulash (716850) — 21 Pier Street 

Yarmouth: Yarmouth Sailing Club (760270) is accepting donations between 2-4pm from Wednesday March 2 to Friday March 4. 

Wootton: 41 High Street, Wootton, PO33 4LU9 -5.30 Mon Friday 9-4pm