Friday, March 4, 2022

How to Support Ukraine and the Ukrainian People

The whole world knows now that Russia invaded Ukraine. Ukrainians are fighting valiantly to resist and preserve their sovereignty.  A week after this unprovoked war began, the Ukrainian people’s resolve and resilience has motivated people everywhere to come together and support them.  Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky’s courage in leading his country in the face of overwhelming odds is inspirational.
In this blog post, I write about my personal connection to Ukraine and share a list of organizations you can donate to if you’d like to support the Ukrainian people.

Quotation by Ukrainian poet Lesia Ukrainka overlad on Ukrainian flag
Lesia Ukrainka (1871-1913) was a Ukrainian poet

My Ukrainian Family History

My mother's paternal grandfather came from Ukraine. The extended family lived in small villages about 2 hours north of Odesa.  My great-grandfather emigrated in 1904 to the U.S. and several of his brothers followed.  They initially settled in Ashley, North Dakota, and some of my relatives are buried in the Jewish cemetery there, which is on the list of National Register of Historic Places.
But 2 brothers remained in Ukraine.  Some of their descendants survived World War II and moved to Odesa and Moscow, and some of them then emigrated to Israel. About 7-8 years ago, my side of the family re-established contact with the relatives in Israel.  They’d compiled a family history so I now know where in Ukraine they lived. 
One year we did a big Skype chat but mostly we communicate by email.  So when the Ukraine war began, I emailed my cousin to find out how they were doing.  His wife’s father and grandfather live in Kyiv but so far, he says they are fine.
I also have connections to Ukraine on other sides of my family.  My mother's maternal grandparents came from a region of Poland that is now part of Ukraine.  On my father’s side, my grandmother emigrated in 1913 from a village in the Austro-Hungarian Empire that is now located in Ukraine.  In fact, the New York Times has posted articles from the nearest city to her hometown.

How to Help Ukraine in Its War with Russia

So I still feel a connection to Ukraine, and have ever since high school when I learned about my family roots in that country.  When I asked my cousin how we here in the U.S. could help, he recommended an organization called United Help Ukraine.  I’ve donated to them and also to World Central Kitchen, because food security is an issue close to me and I think highly of the work this organization does.  If you want to help the people of Ukraine, I encourage you to donate whatever you can to these organizations.  Thank you!

More Organizations that are Helping Ukraine

* List of 28 organizations compiled by CNN

* List of 9 organizations compiled by Returned Peace Corps Volunteers in Ukraine

* List of 23 organizations compiled by USAID

Ukrainian TpT Sellers

Last but not least, here are links to the TpT stores of 2 Ukrainian sellers:
* Victoria from Crazy Charizma
* Natalie from Math is Easy

Slava Ukraini - Glory to Ukraine text overlaid on Ukrainian flag
Slava Ukraini!

I truly hope this senseless war ends soon, with Ukraine victorious and remaining an independent country.