A Message to Friends About Aiding Ukraine
The scope of the humanitarian crisis unfolding in the Ukraine is staggering with over 600,000 people so far, mostly women and children, having crossed into neighboring countries. Our hearts are with all those affected by this devastating war inflicted on Ukraine by Vladimir Putin. Even as governments across the world commit to humanitarian aid, there is an urgent need for private support. As Friends, we have an opportunity to remind all those that are suffering that they are not alone. In terms of material aid, below are a few ways to contribute:
The International Rescue Committee is setting up facilities in Poland to care for Ukrainian refugees. Given that the IRC is present in conflict zones across the world, your emergency contribution will also help refugees in places like Afghanistan, Syria and Yemen.
UNICEF USA and UNICEF Canada are providing aid to children harmed by the Russian invasion. UNICEF has had a presence in eastern Ukraine for some time and is now responding to the expanded crisis.
The UNHCR Refugee Agency USA and UNHCR Canada are also stepping up efforts to help Ukrainian refugees.
Doctors without Borders are dispatching medical teams to Poland, Moldova, Hungary, Romania, and Slovakia and are also ready to respond in Russia and Belarus.
In terms of providing spiritual support, an immediate opportunity is:
Daily Global Quaker Meeting for Worship at Noon EST
There is a daily global virtual Meeting for Worship to hold in the Light the situation in Ukraine, the decision makers, the soldiers, the citizens – all the people whose lives are in danger and already disrupted by fear at noon EST. The meeting has been organized by Friends House Moscow supporters in the USA. Please participate as and when you are able.
We will update these lists as this crisis continues to unfold. Friends General Conference is also in process of drafting a message urging increased diplomatic efforts to bring an immediate ceasefire, to increase humanitarian aid, and to see that the needs, safety and dignity of all refugees, including refugees of color, are honored. We will release this as soon as possible.
General Secretary of Friends General Conference