In the midst of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, hundreds of innocent civilians have been killed, and even more have been fatally injured. According to the Ukrainian Infrastructure Minister Oleksandr Kubrakov, there is approximately $10 billion worth of damage to infrastructure in Ukraine, including homes and places of business. Additionally, many families in Ukraine are attempting to flee from the destruction happening in their homeland, which is dangerous in and of itself. Although this news is devastating, there are helpful and supportive acts of kindness that United States citizens can take part in to help the people of Ukraine.
There are various ways one could contribute to the different components that Ukrainian refugees need. Most significantly, donating is the most effective way to contribute. Among the hundreds of organizations that you may consider making a donation to, these are a few of the most prominent, powerful and trusted organizations that are preparing to make huge strides in supporting the Ukrainian people.
- Project HOPE: This group works to aid victims of humanitarian emergencies around the world, mostly offering medicinal treatments. According to their website, their volunteers are “on the ground actively delivering medical supplies and other urgent assistance in Ukraine and surrounding countries.” To support their efforts, you can donate on their website.
- UNICEF USA: Among the many facets of relief that UNICEF is working to bring to the people of Ukraine, their primary efforts aid children and their emotional wellbeing. They focus on “supporting mobile child protection teams providing psychosocial care to children traumatized by chronic insecurity, responding to cases of violence and abuse against children and assisting children separated from family.” To support their efforts, you can donate on their website.
- Voices of Children: This organization works towards goals similar to that of UNICEF in their mission to help the children of Ukraine. They maintain that “we are providing non-stop assistance to affected children and families from all over the country, providing emergency psychological assistance, and assisting in the evacuation process.” To support their efforts, you can donate on their website.
- Choose Love: Choose Love is a main contributor in aiding the needs of the LGBTQ+ community in Ukraine. According to their website, they are offering “emergency medical care, food, shelter, clothes, legal support, support for the LGBTQIA+ community, and mental health support.” They are incredibly close to their goal in funds, so you may consider donating on their website.
- Sunflower of Peace: Like many organizations assisting Ukraine civilians, this one in particular aims to help orphans trying to survive within strenuous war conditions. Their website states that they “provide medical and humanitarian aid that will be used by the paramedics and doctors in the areas that are affected by the violence in Ukraine. [They] are acquiring and distributing first-aid backpacks, medicine, medical instruments, and other means of survival.” If this is a community you are interested in helping, you may donate on their website or their Facebook.
- Revived Soldiers Ukraine: This organization helps Ukraine soldiers and their families through this incredibly difficult time.They support army hospitals and work vigorously to improve the living conditions of soldiers and their families. You can help them by donating, becoming a patron or pledging 0.5% of your next Amazon purchase to them. You can learn more on their website.
As one can see, these are just six very brief descriptions of the various efforts targeting a multitude of different communities and demographics within Ukraine. There are hundreds of similar organizations, so if these did not appeal to you, you might think about exploring these two websites with further listings — GQ and Time Out. Keep in mind that many of these organizations are seeking volunteers, which is also something to consider if you are willing and able.
If donating money is something you are not in the position to do, there are many other ways to contribute to the humanitarian efforts in Ukraine.
First, you may feel so inclined to write to your local representatives to suggest how your community can help Ukraine. For instance, writing your general thoughts on the subject, offering ideas to get the community involved or coordinating fundraisers, charities or other events could raise awareness and money in your community.
Second, you can get involved in more direct political activism. There are countless protests occurring worldwide against Russia’s invasion and you may be able to attend one near you, or even arrange one in your community. This is a great way to spread awareness and get your family and friends involved in the cause.
Third, it is crucial that you stay safe and smart on social media. In order to bring attention to the invasion, the hashtag “StandforUkraine” has been utilized to track and document events happening in Ukraine. However, people have been using this to spread misinformation and false occurrences. Therefore, you must be careful about what you see on social media and ask yourself if it is credible and comes from a reliable source. Do your research and don’t further the spread of misinformation to others.
Lastly, do your part to utilize the current Ukrainian media and journalism that is available. In order to preserve the documentation and coverage of the unraveling events in Ukraine, authorities have agreed to exempt Ukrainian journalists from the war efforts. “The Committee to Protect Journalists on Monday called on Ukrainian authorities to exempt journalists from the general mobilization of all Ukrainian men aged between 18 and 60,” wrote the Committee to Protect Journalists on March 7. Currently, there is a GoFundMe page to preserve Ukrainian media in order for the world to encounter firsthand information of the invasion. If you feel passionately about this issue, consider donating to their page to maintain the media flow.
Likewise, Salwan Georges, a staff photographer for The Washington Post, is currently covering the events in Ukraine and frequently posts several photos to his Instagram, revealing raw footage of the horrors that Ukrainian civilians have encountered. I follow him and have personally learned so much about the realities that this war has brought upon these innocent people. I would most definitely recommend following Georges and other credible forms of media.
There truly is so much that people around the world can do to help Ukraine. Please consider contributing in any way that you can, whether that be through financial donations or spreading of correct information.
Reese Coblentz feels passionately that there is so much people can do to help the people of Ukraine and strongly urges you to take the time in learning more about what options are available to you and how you can contribute.