How to Help Ukrainians
Here are some deserving aid groups working in Ukraine.
Update: Since writing this, I’ve learned of another couple more organizations that I recommend. One is Razom for Ukraine, which is based in the United States and sends assistance to Ukraine; now it is focused on sending medicine and hospital equipment. Because it is in the U.S., contributions are tax deductible. The other is this fund set up by the Ukrainian central bank to provide humanitarian assistance; donations are not tax-deductible.
People keep asking me: How can I help people in Ukraine? Lots of aid groups are trying to raise money from the crisis in Ukraine, but here are some that I particularly trust.
My recommendation is to focus on those active inside Ukraine, rather than those helping Ukrainian refugees in Poland. Once refugees get to Poland or Moldova or other countries, they’ll get some help, and the most urgent needs are inside Ukraine.
Note that the war may make it more difficult for these groups to function in Ukraine, and that there are also acute needs elsewhere in the world. The suffering of Tigrayans in Ethiopia, for example, is just as great as that of Ukrainians, and gets much less attention. Yemenis remain in desperate shape, facing hunger as well as disease but rarely making the headlines. And Afghans are going hungry — so while Ukraine is in the news, your donation may actually be more likely to save lives in a place like Ethiopia or Afghanistan.
That said, people keep asking me about Ukraine, and here are some suggestions:
Doctors Without Borders is just a first-rate organization that was already workin in Ukraine and is now figuring out how best to respond to the war there. I’ve seen Doctors Without Borders at work in many war-torn countries and have enormous respect for their courage and commitment. Once when I was fleeing an area in Darfur that I felt was unsafe, they were arriving. They’re the real thing.
International Medical Corps is similar to Doctors Without Borders and also does great work in Ukraine. It has a reputation for staying after the emergency is over to help build local capacity.
Save the Children is active in Ukraine and has a fund to support kids caught up in the conflict there. It’s a terrific organization and has a network on the ground.
Plenty of other aid groups do fine work and may be asking for your support. But see if they actually are on the ground in Ukraine or are simply helping people who have left the country.
While there are more options, I think your investment in any of these organizations I name above will be money well spent.