Want to help Ukraine? This website can connect you to relief and fundraising efforts in the Chicago area
UKRAINIAN VILLAGE – A new website pulls together information about relief efforts, events, rallies and other initiatives being held in the Chicago area in support of Ukraine.
Ukrainegiving.info was recently started by Jeff Chapman, a Clarendon Hills resident who wanted to make it easier for people to support Ukraine after finding it difficult to do so earlier this year.
When Russia invaded Ukraine in February, Chapman was eager to help with relief efforts. But he didn’t know exactly where to go or which organizations to trust.
Eventually, he made a donation through the Selfdependence Credit Union, a Ukrainian bank based in the Ukrainian village. But Chapman wanted to streamline the process for himself and others.
“I’m in the Chicago area and wanted to donate money to support Ukraine. I’m not Ukrainian, but I wanted to help them financially. And I didn’t know where to go,” he said.
Chapman also heard about rallies and other events to support Ukraine after the fact in the news, when it was too late to attend.
So, with the help of a few other volunteers, Chapman started Ukraine Giving to act as a central hub for finding events and fundraisers in the Chicago area, as well as charities and nonprofits on the ground in Ukraine.
“I just had the idea that it wouldn’t be great to make a website to alert people in advance to some of these issues,” Chapman said.
Events listed on the website’s calendar include major fundraisers, golf events, benefit concerts and bar get-togethers. All share the central mission of raising funds for Ukraine.
Chapman said he finds events from a variety of online sources, but also encourages people to add their own. Anyone hosting an event or fundraiser can submit information here.
The website also includes a list of more than 60 agencies working to organize relief efforts in Ukraine. Groups range from well-known nonprofits like Doctors Without Borders to smaller ones based in the Chicago area. Chapman has included links to information about each organization’s finances, so donors can check before donating money.
For Chapman, Ukraine Giving is a way to keep the war in the public conversation, more than three months after the Russian invasion. He compared the situation to the 1930s, when Hitler rose to power and the world did nothing.
“I think that’s the ultimate question: why should Americans care? And if we believe in what we say, if we believe in democracy, then we have to help the Ukrainian people,” he said.
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