Scots student to drive ambulance to Poland to help Ukrainian refugees

Umran Ali Javaid purchased the secondhand ambulance in a bid to help those fleeing conflict.

Glasgow Caledonian University student to drive ambulance to Polish-Ukrainian border Email

A kind-hearted university student has bought an ambulance and plans to drive it to the Polish-Ukrainian border to help refugees fleeing the Russian invasion. 

Umran Ali Javaid, a student at Glasgow Caledonian University, will hand over the patient transport ambulance to a charity in Poland after purchasing the vehicle for £2500 in Newcastle. 

The international tourism and events student, who lives in Glasgow with his family, has previously delivered more than 30 secondhand ambulances to conflict zones in Burma, Syria, Iraq and Yemen.

He plans to set off on Friday, bound for the Medyka border crossing, and hopes the ambulance will be used within Ukraine to distribute supplies and transport civilians out of immediate danger. 

Umran said: “One ambulance can only help a few hundred people but there are tens of thousands in need.

“It is heartbreaking to see what is happening over there. The ambulance can be used to transport disabled people, older people, or can be filled up with medical supplies.

“In war, it’s always the innocent civilians that suffer. I feel as if I have to do something to help.”

Umran Ali Javaid and his family purchased the ambulance to help those in need. Email

Umran’s journey will see him travel to Newcastle before taking a ferry to the Netherlands, then driving through Germany to Poland. 

He plans to fill the ambulance with aid when he arrives in mainland Europe over the weekend.

Umran added: “I have travelled a lot and I’ve seen the impact war has on civilians first-hand.​

“At times of crisis, these areas need supplies and they need patient transport.”

Dr Pauline Bell, senior lecturer in fashion and marketing at GCU and one of Umran’s tutors, said: “Umran is a remarkable, unassuming young man who is an inspiration to others. 

“He thinks little of using his spare time to help others and embarking on incredible journeys to deliver ambulances to people in need.”

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