• Seal with a Pen

Aid to Ukraine

I'm sure that most everyone who reads this will be aware of the ongoing crisis in Ukraine. As I pointed out in a previous post, nearly 6.5 million people have been displaced from their homes and communities by the conflict according to the UN'S International Organization for Migration. However, even as millions of people are suffering in the heat of war, millions of others have stepped up to provide aid and comfort to the people of Ukraine and Eastern Europe, and with all of the news-media focused on the progress of the military aspect, I thought I'd share how regular, ordinary citizens have been able to make a positive impact and change lives for the better through their simple, awe-inspiring kindness and generosity.


To be clear, I have created this site for the promotion of political achievement and accomplishment, and the promotion of the positive and the good that there is in the world. The world is, of course, not all sunshine and roses. There are plenty of other websites on the internet that you can visit if you want bad news. I am not here to share bad news. I actively encourage you to read other sources and keep up to date with current events. However, I believe that more people will be willing to share if they see that charitable sharing truly can make an impact, and isn't just a black hole of cash. And, of course, it's not just governments and big non-profit organizations that can share: we, as ordinary citizens, have the power to positively impact lives with just a few dollars, or even just our thoughts and prayers.


I have written this article to share the good that charity is doing in Ukraine, and to promote the humanitarian cause. I wish to be very clear, however, that humanitarian donations are an individual decision, and that no-one should ever be guilt-tripped into giving. There are plenty of people without the means to give; whatever the reason may be, if you are unable to give, I want you to know that that's okay. I hope that you can read about the good that others are doing and that you feel better about the world without feeling worse about yourself. You can help out by simply providing your moral support for this humanitarian cause. There is no military or geopolitical aspect to having charitable love for the war-stricken, the displaced. May they be blessed.


-- Seal with a Pen


Humanitarian Aid Thus Far

Devex, an organization that focuses on global development, has issued a report claiming that more than $12 billion has been committed to help Ukraine by governments and major organizations such as the World Bank and UN Refugee Agency. Here are just a few of the major contributions that have been made so far:


From the United States government: Earlier this month the United States passed a bill sending $13.6 billion to Ukraine, including $4 billion in humanitarian support. Of this, $2.6 billion goes to USAID to provide essential food and medical care to Ukrainians, while another $1.4 billion will go towards assisting refugees from the conflict. Furthermore, the United States will be receiving 100,000 refugees from Ukraine. There are over one million people of Ukrainian ancestry already living in the United States according to the U.S. Census Bureau.


From the European Union government: The European Commission has promised 500 million (roughly $549 million) solely for humanitarian aid, including food, water, healthcare, and shelter, and 29 European countries have donated over 107 million humanitarian items to Ukraine through EU channels already. Individual European countries, especially Poland, have contributed even more, with Poland alone taking in about 2.2 million Ukrainian refugees -- more people than the entire population of Poland's capital. The incredible power of modern technology has also allowed the Polish government to set up a "one-stop shop" for humanitarian aid that is available in English here.


From the World Bank and International Monetary Fund: According to the Devex report linked above, the World Bank and International Monetary Fund have approved over $5 billion in loans and repayable finance for Ukraine, to help the Ukrainian government provide basic services such as wages and pensions for the duration of the war. This money comes from a variety of individual governments, including the Netherlands, Sweden, and Japan.


From private organizations: You may have heard that, in response to concerns that Russia could block off Ukraine from the internet, Elon Musk provided Starlink terminals to keep Ukraine online. Devex cites a number of other corporate donors as well, including $22 million donated by IKEA, and $15 million donated by Google and Meta (formerly Facebook) each.


From the public: Devex does not provide exact figures on this matter, but estimates that total donations from the general public may total around a whopping $3 billion. That's quite an incredible amount; believe it or not, that is over seventeen times the entire amount of humanitarian aid offered to Ukraine in 2020 -- by countries, companies, intergovernmental groups, NGOs, charities, and others -- according to Devex. Isn't that amazing? People truly can do amazing things when called upon in a time of crisis.


And, of course, plenty of impromptu groups of European citizens have been formed to help aid the people of Ukraine during this time.


How You Can Help

Last month, NPR published this handy page on how we can help Ukrainians in need, while the Better Business Bureau provides this list instead. While I cannot endorse or vouch for any of the charities or other organizations included in this article, what I can do is provide some links to websites that watch and assess charities' performance. Some examples of these charity watchdog organizations are CharityWatch, Charity Navigator, and the Better Business Bureau.


These contributions are truly making a major impact on Ukrainian lives. But, the world of humanitarian aid is not easy, and the ongoing image of war looms over all efforts. I have attached some videos covering various current aid efforts below:





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