A charity padel tournament in support of British Ukrainian Aid is set to bring together players from across the UK in Slough next week.
Margaryta Logvinova, a 30-year-old athlete who had to leave her home country due to the ongoing conflict, is spearheading this effort with the aim of raising a minimum of £5,000.
The funds raised during the event (hosted at ‘The Padel Hub’ in Slough) will be allocated to acquiring essential medical equipment in Ukraine.
For Margaryta, this event is more than just a charity initiative; it’s a heartfelt commitment to assisting her fellow Ukrainians who are still enduring the hardships of the conflict.
Drawing from her background as a former professional badminton and squash player, she explained, “I felt a profound calling to contribute to Ukraine by leveraging my strengths and applying my skillset. This inner drive led me to the decision to organise a padel tournament.”
The primary goal of this tournament is to secure funds for essential medical equipment such as a dialysis machine and water purification systems, which are urgently needed by a military hospital in Kyiv.
Additionally, there is a pressing need for other medical supplies like stretchers, a defibrillator, an ICU ventilator, an ECG machine, a medical aspirator, and a blood pressure monitoring device, among other items.
Margaryta’s ambition is to surpass the £5,000 target for the charity.
Margaryta discovered padel before her departure from Ukraine and has since found it to be a significant source of motivation and resilience.
She shared, “When the war began, circumstances forced me to leave Ukraine. Padel has not only provided me with physical engagement but has also served as a source of mental strength to weather the storm of emotions.”
The charity event, known as “Play Padel for Ukraine,” will take place on November 11 and will include mixed, men’s, and women’s categories, each with 12 teams.
In addition, it will feature an exhibition match with five of the UK’s top men’s padel players.
The event will conclude with a prize ceremony and an ‘after party.’
The fundraising activities will receive support from former Chelsea and Ukraine striker Andrey Shevchenko, as well as the world’s No 1 padel professional, Ale Galan, both of whom have contributed autographed items.
An auction and raffle will be held, offering participants the chance to win padel equipment and receive free padel coaching.
The tournament has garnered support from the Padel Federation of Ukraine and has received backing from sponsors such as Adidas, DropShot, Padel Corner, and The Padel Hub.
Margaryta’s dedication to humanitarian efforts is not new.
In the past, she raised £5,500 for British Ukrainian Aid and actively participated in the government-led “Ukrainian Books for Ukrainian Children” project, which aimed to provide Ukrainian literature to children abroad.
She has also been involved in providing food and medication to healthcare institutions in Ukraine and the National Guard of Ukraine.
Margaryta, who has found padel to be a crucial part of her life in London, expressed her gratitude to the Padel Federation of Ukraine for their support in finding a club in London and enabling her to continue her involvement in the sport.
She also noted their instrumental role in engaging her in various other projects, tournaments, exhibitions, courses, and padel events, further fueling her passion for the sport.
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