The family of the boy Sir Elton John desperately wanted to adopt from the Ukraine has urged the star to help them as violent unrest continues to rock the country.

The Rocket Man hitmaker and his partner David Furnish tried to adopt little Lev Ageyev in 2009 after meeting him in an orphanage in Makeeva, but his bid was rejected, because same-sex couples are forbidden to adopt in the country.

Five years on, Lev is living in a squalid apartment with his grandmother, Yulia, after she saved him from the orphanage - and now she has called on Sir Elton to help them escape their hellish existence as trouble continues to spread across the country due to ongoing conflicts between the Ukraine and Russia.

She tells Britain's The Sun on Sunday, "I know he (Elton John) felt something for Lev. We're worried what will happen so any help he could give us would be appreciated... I can't take the boys (Lev and his brother) anywhere. We went to the zoo and they were so happy - a rare treat. Money is really tight."