In the past two weeks, Americans and the rest of the world have hustled to help the more than three million Ukrainians fleeing from war in Eastern Europe, and Ukrainian-American communities have been on the front-lines of the relief effort in the US. From creating music to raising funds and filling boxes with medical supplies to be flown to Ukraine to simply marching in solidarity and compassion, Ukrainian-Americans are on their feet making change. Here are a few Ukrainian-American organizations who are doing the work, and how you can help them right now.
Donate supplies and money
At the Ukrainian Cultural Center of Rochester in Webster, NY, an emergency meeting was held March 6 to change the organization’s bylaws to add a “charitable mission” arm through ROC Maidan. With that bylaw adjustment, the UCC was able to host a donation drive March 3-10 for area residents to drop off sleeping bags, diapers, toothbrushes, and other personal care items. And with the healing qualities of music, the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra presented a March 12 benefit concert for Ukraine. On its Facebook page, the orchestra announced it had sold 1,646 tickets in four days and raised nearly $59,000 to go to ROC Maidan. You can donate directly to ROC Maidan here.
In Jenkintown, PA, near Philadelphia, the Ukrainian Educational & Cultural Center has received so many physical donations that it has ceased collection and is now fundraising for the air freight to get those items across the ocean. Monetary donations may be made online via a QR code on the center’s home page, by writing a check to the UNWLA Philadelphia Regional Council, or online via the Philadelphia Ukrainian Selfreliance Federal Credit Union. The credit union is currently waiving fees for all financial wires to Ukraine and Poland.
At the Ukrainian American House in Rancho Cordova, CA, members are “in communication with the head of the Ukrainian presidential administration, the Minister of Defense, and various leaders to guarantee that this critical aid is transported to the areas in need swiftly and efficiently,” reports the organization’s donation page, which has two separate buttons to donate medical supplies or military supplies to arm everyday civilians.
Support a concert series
In Boston, a Berklee College of Music student named Valeria Kuzmuk, who moved to the US from Odessa, Ukraine, in 2019, worked with fellow students to organize a concert on March 11, the first of a planned series. The students were able to get 110 performers committed to the idea within 72 hours and raised funds for Ukrainian children through the Voices of Children foundation: they encourage donations at the linked-to site here and attendance at future concerts.
Attend a cultural event
The Ukrainian Cultural Center of New England will hold a March 20 Fundraising Campaign for Ukraine, which will include traditional Ukrainian music, cuisine and art workshops to raise funds. Previously, 3,000 people attended the center’s March 6 “Stand with Ukraine: Together we ARE Ukraine!” campaign at Trinity Church Boston and marched afterward to Boston Common for a rally.
All proceeds from the Ukrainian American Youth Association Boston’s annual Easter Bazaar & Pysanky Sale on April 2-3 will go towards aid for Ukraine. Held at their location in Norwood, MA, the event will feature sales of pysanky, the intricately decorated eggs made with wax-resist method.
Write to your representative
The UECC also urges that everyone write to representatives, senators, and President Biden to stop Russia’s war, share the truth about the war against Ukraine with local media, and boycott all Russian goods and services. If you live in Massachusetts, a petition is circulating online to let Senators Warren and Markey know that the commonwealth should take a leadership role in helping Ukrainian refugees gain access to the US asylum system.
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Or if you're looking for a larger organization to get involved with, check out these 18 ways you can help the people of Ukraine right now.