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Slavic Club raises funds to aid Ukraine

<p>Members of the Slavic Club raise funds on March 1 in the Tyler Haynes Commons for organizations aiding Ukraine.</p>

Members of the Slavic Club raise funds on March 1 in the Tyler Haynes Commons for organizations aiding Ukraine.

University of Richmond Slavic Club members organized a fundraiser this week to help people in Ukraine that have been harmed by Russia’s large-scale invasion. 

Slavic Club is a student organization promoting the region’s culture, sophomore Lillian Tzanev said. The club has taken initiative to help those in Ukraine by advertising five Ukrainian relief organizations for anyone to donate to. The club collected donations for these organizations in Tyler Haynes Commons on Feb. 28, Feb. 29 and March 1. 

Regardless of where the situation is happening in the world, victims in Ukraine urgently need assistance and anyone that is able to should donate and spread the message, Tzanev said.

The five relief organizations include CARE Ukraine Crisis Fund, Kyiv Independent News, People in Need SOS Ukraine, Help us Help Ukraine and Razom Emergency Response, according to the club’s Instagram post

“These are well-vetted organizations that I’ve looked through,'' said Natalie McCauley, Russian Studies professor and faculty advisor of Slavic club, who was tabling on Monday in THC. “My colleagues and I have directly worked with them for years.” 

All donations will be anonymous, junior Mason Manley said. 

“We are also not counting how much donations we receive,” Manley said. “It’s not a publicity thing.” 

UR Community members can donate via card, cash, or Venmo, McCauley said. 

“[Funds will] reach millions with immediate aid and recovery, food, water, hygiene kits, psychosocial support and cash assistance,” CARE’s Ukraine Crisis Fund states. The urgent funding will reach 4 million people and prioritize women, girls, families and the elderly. 

Slavic Club is also aiding Kyiv Independent, an English-language media outlet. 

“We need your support in this difficult and unpredictable task,” wrote Jakub Parusinski, organizer of Kyiv Independent, on the Gofundme page. “From cyberattacks, bombings, ground invasions — it is hard to predict what the days ahead will bring and what we will need to respond.”

People in Need is a non-governmental and nonprofit organization. The organization strives to support those affected in Ukraine, as well as the refugees fleeing to neighboring countries, according to the website. 

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Help Us Help, a Canadian charity organization, is providing tools and resources for disadvantaged children and veterans in Ukraine, according to the website. 

Razom, a Ukrainian-American nonprofit organization, is providing critical medical supplies for those in vulnerable situations, reads the organization’s website. 

“If you’re dedicated to the cause, you’re gonna do the groundwork and you’re gonna donate,” first-year student Amal Ali said. “Get involved.”

Sharing what is happening in Ukraine on social media is effective, but not enough to help, Ali said.

“I'm really passionate about backing up your words,” Ali said. “Of course, social media has an impact, but for activism as a whole, there’s a lot more to it than social media. Do the work.” 

The Slavic Club will continue providing information on the ongoing crisis and how UR community members can help via its Instagram page.

Contact news writer Ananya Chetia at ananya.chetia@richmond.edu.

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