Ukraine is almost half a world away, but the images of babies being born in makeshift bunkers, civilians giving soldiers and tearful goodbyes at the border have touched the hearts of many right here. in the Triangle.
Some have taken to the streets to protest and others are sending financial support. However, before you donate, be sure to take the time to make sure your money is going to those who need it – and not to a scammer.
“The scam is a billion dollar business and unfortunately much of it is due to charity scams,” warns Alyssa Parker, director of communications for the Better Business Bureau of Easter North Carolina.
Actor Ryan Reynolds recently announced that he and his wife, actress Blake Lively, will donate up to $1,000,000 to the United Nations refugee donation website.
“Even though celebrities often tie themselves to a specific charity, you still want to do the research yourself to make sure it’s something that’s also relevant to what you want to give,” Parker said.
Take the time to research before donating through social media or the crowdfunding website.
“The simplest isn’t always the best,” Parker said. “GoFundMe does a really good job of trying to get rid of these scam websites, but some are successful because it’s a lot to verify.”
Where to donate to help in Ukraine
To verify a charity yourself, go to Give.org and enter the name of the charity. Charities like Global Empowerment Mission and World Central Kitchen have options on their website to make sure your money goes directly to the Ukraine crisis.
Supporting hospitals in Ukraine:
Having raised more than $4 million over the past eight years, Support Hospital provides “trauma-related surgical equipment and tools,” among other needed items. They take donations through their website portal.
The Kiev Independent:
One of Ukraine’s leading English-language media outlets, The Kyiv Independent is a recently founded publication that publishes detailed information both on its website and on its Twitter account. They receive donations through GoFundMe.
Ukrainian Humanitarian Fund:
Part of the OCHA division of the United Nations, the Humanitarian Fund for Ukraine raises funds for those in eastern Ukraine, which has long been the scene of sustained attacks. They take donations through their website portal.