By now you have probably been bombarded with appeals and campaigns via emails, social media feeds and fundraising events in your local community to help support the humanitarian aid for the people of Ukraine. Here are some helpful suggestions on how to make sure your financial donations, goods or volunteering efforts will be most effective and safely go to the right places.
1. Make your financial giving safe
All UK registered charities partnered with Stewardship have been checked and verified with the Charities Commission. You can check your chosen charity either with Stewardship: Support a cause or the Government charity register. With a Stewardship Giving Account, you can be confident in your giving, knowing that Stewardship have undertaken the appropriate checks.
Donating to organisations in Ukraine:
- Giving money to charities working inside Ukraine or donating to UK based charities for onward grant making to Ukraine will become more difficult as parts of Ukraine are annexed by conflict. Financial sanctions will also apply to occupied Ukraine and the country’s banking system may not be able to process overseas payments. There is a risk that your financial support becomes inaccessible. Check with the charity how donations will be used and processed in a rapidly changing situation. The Government continues to update their guidance for charity donations to Ukraine here: Statement on Ukraine crisis and its implications for charities.
One of the safest ways to donate to Ukraine is to support the largest humanitarian NGOs coordinated via DEC (Disaster Emergency Committee), where they have a proven track record and vast experience of providing relief in war zones. World Vision, Christian Aid, Tearfund and CAFOD are among the 15 charities that make up the DEC. Although the Government match funding scheme has been reached, this is still an important and ongoing appeal.
Donating to countries surrounding Ukraine receiving refugees:
Many charities working in Poland, Slovenia, Hungary, Romania and Moldova are prioritising humanitarian aid over their normal activities, to support the vast numbers of refugees who are now on the move. These charities have launched appeals for humanitarian aid. Stewardship’s Rapid Response initiative lists the charities who you can support operating in these countries: Rapid Response: Support Ukraine. Thank you to all who have given generously to the fund already.
2. Only donate essential supplies to Ukraine
Check what is needed from published lists created by charities before you send anything. Unwanted items, although well meant, can block supply chains and delay more urgent lifesaving assistance getting through. Such gifts often don’t reach their intended destinations.
Some organisations do ask for essential items such as clothes, first aid and sanitary products.
3. Volunteer in the UK
We can prepare to welcome refugees from Ukraine. At the moment we don’t know how many will be welcomed here, but families and individuals are already arriving.
Welcome Churches have wide experience of supporting and training churches and individuals who work with asylum and refugees. They have set up Ukraine Welcome and you can join the Welcome Churches network to be alerted to new resources when they are released.
- The UK Government will be launching a new sponsorship scheme to welcome and provide refuge for Ukrainians who have been forced to flee their homes. Dr Krish Kandiah (Home for Good, and The Hospitality Pledge) is assisting the Government response and capturing expressions of interest from volunteers. Individuals, community groups, churches, schools and businesses can register their interest at Sanctuary Foundation
Ways to get involved:
Welcoming a Ukrainian family to live in your community
Finding and furnishing suitable accommodation
Raising support funding (previous sponsorships have been between £1K-£9K)
Befriending and integration support through volunteer time
4. Keep up to date and check your facts about Ukraine
In this rapidly changing and unfolding crisis there is a lot of false information or hearsay, especially spread on social media. Keep checking the websites we have recommended here for the most up to date and reliable information.
Get started with a Stewardship Giving Account
A Stewardship Giving Account can help you discover more charities working for causes you care about. It provides you with full visibility of how much you give and who you give to, and the flexibility to make changes to your giving at any time.
Find out how you could be increasing the impact of your gifts today.