A Jewish aid worker from London has rescued over 1,000 Jewish refugees from Ukraine, including 270 orphans.

Since Russia’s invasion began, Jeremy Posen, who works for Tikva – a charity that cares for the homeless, abandoned and abused Jewish children of Odessa and neighboring regions of the Former Soviet Union – has rescued many children from Odessa, including babies only a few weeks old and children with diabetes reliant on insulin, the Daily Mail reported.

Posen, the chief financial officer for Tikva for the last three years, decided when the invasion started to save as many refugees as possible.

“In my head, I didn't really believe Russia would invade but we took the threat very seriously, and I thought: ‘Ok, we'll make sure we have food to last three months and reserves of cash, and if we don't need it immediately, we can still use it over time.’ It was vital to have a plan,” the father of 10 told the Jewish Chronicle.

The journeys by bus to take the refugees out of Ukraine were perilous and took 10 more hours than normal because of road blocks and military checkpoints.

“That first drive took more than 28 hours and it was very hairy. I knew we were doing the right thing because Odessa was likely to be attacked, but we could see shelling in the distance,” Posen said.

“We were held up at countless roadblocks, where the police and soldiers were coming on to the buses to check everyone and their papers. With so many young kids, it was quite tense.”

Posen was able to move the group that Tikva was caring for in Odessa into Moldova and then to Romania. Everyone is now safe.

“Whilst obviously elated about all the members of our community, and the children of our orphanages we have managed to rescue, we continue to worry and care for all those left behind here,” Posen said.

Tikva told the Daily Mail that Posen “remains together with Rabbi Baksht in Western Ukraine, along with another 200 people, including the families from our community that fled with us from Odessa and additional families from Odessa and elsewhere who have joined us throughout the week. They will attempt a border crossing and hopefully join the rest of the group some time next week.”