Although Russia and Ukraine have agreed to a ceasefire, the port city of Mariupol has collapsed amid scenes of terror and Russian President Vladimir Putin warned in a speech from Moscow on Saturday that the neighboring country could lose its statehood.
The struggle to enforce the temporary ceasefire in Mariupol and the eastern town of Volnovakha has shown the fragility of efforts to stop fighting across Ukraine, with the number of people fleeing the country reaching 1.4 million Just 10 days after the invasion of Russian forces.
Ukrainian officials said artillery fire and Russian airstrikes prevented residents from leaving before agreed evacuations began. Putin accused Ukraine of sabotaging the effort and claimed the actions of Ukrainian leaders called into question the country’s future as an independent state.
As the invasion of Ukraine continues, many, including Chicago-area residents, are watching from afar for ways to help the country in its fight.
As world leaders condemned the intervention and imposed multiple sanctions on Russia, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said in a tweet that “Now, more than ever, we need concrete support.”
For those wondering how you can support, here are some verified groups that accept donations for medical supplies, humanitarian aid, and field volunteers.
Organizations providing medical supplies and humanitarian aid
Razom for Ukraine – Razom, which means “together” in Ukrainian, is a voluntary charity founded in 2014 to support Ukrainians after the annexation of Crimea by Russia.
GlobalGiving Ukraine Relief Fund – GlobalGiving uses all donations to support humanitarian aid to affected communities in Ukraine, as well as surrounding areas where refugees have fled. Donating to the cause will provide basic necessities such as shelter, food, clean water including health, psychosocial support, access to education and economic relief and more.
Jewish United Fund: Crisis in Ukraine – Serving all faiths in Chicago, Israel and around the world, JUF provides humanitarian assistance to 40,000 poor Jewish seniors and families in Ukraine. The organization is prioritizing aid for the approximately 10,000 Holocaust survivors living in Ukraine, many of whom are confined to their homes.
War-Affected Children Aid Organizations
UNICEF – UNICEF primarily supports children and families caught up in the conflict in Ukraine. The agency provides educational support, psychosocial support, emergency supplies as well as access to clean water. The organization announced that it had stepped up its programs after the invasion. Catherine Russell, Executive Director of UNICEF, said the escalating violence in Ukraine posed an immediate threat to the lives and well-being of the country’s 7.5 million children.
save the children – The London-based organization is working to deliver lifesaving aid to children around the world, including 400,000 children “caught in the crossfire of this adult war” in Ukraine who already needed help.
children’s voices – This non-profit organization helps provide psychological and psychosocial support to children in Ukraine affected by the consequences of armed conflict.
Refugee Aid Organizations
International Rescue Committee – The refugee organization works to help evacuate regular families out of conflict zones – including Ukraine. The IRC said this “full-scale war” will result in a humanitarian catastrophe, resulting in the deaths of innocent people, the destruction of infrastructure and mass displacement.
Local groups accepting donations/Recipe donations
Meest Karpaty – The delivery company, which ships packages to Ukraine and other countries, said it will accept “humanitarian aid packages” on Wednesday for shipment to Ukraine.
Full Circle Pilates – Full Circle Pilates has launched an Amazon wishlist with supplies the Chicago-based company says will be sent directly to Ukraine via Meest-Karpaty (above).
Door County Candle Society– Door County Candle Company is selling a candle in the colors of the Ukrainian flag and 100% of the profits go to Razom for Ukraine, a Ukrainian 501(c)(3) organization, according to the business owner, who is Ukrainian-American.
For a continuously updated list of ways to help, click here.