Ukraine: Smart Giving in times of crisis

Finding out which organizations to support is an important action to ensure your donation goes the furthest

I saw a post on my social media feed a few days ago that described the extreme measures parents in Ukraine were taking to reconnect with their children. The most affecting image for me was of a child with contact information written in Sharpie marker on their back. As disturbing as all the images of the devastation have been, this image brought into stark focus war’s direct impact on the most vulnerable.  

When you find yourself compelled to support a cause, whether in your own community or in an overseas country in crisis, finding out which organizations to support is one of the most important actions to take to ensure your donation goes the furthest.

At Charities Review Council, we’ve built a platform and tool, The Accountability Standards®, that showcases transparency and productivity between donors, nonprofits, and the general public. With the Standards, the Council builds a culture of philanthropy, where nonprofits and donors are engaged partners, working together for stronger communities. 

Whether you’re a donor looking to create a personalized giving plan for a cause you deeply care about or part of an organization seeking to build trust, I hope you’ll look to the Council and other organizations like CharityNavigator to determine whether you feel comfortable giving based on the organization’s policies, procedures, and transparency.

Want a list of local Meets Standards® nonprofit organizations that are helping on the ground in Ukraine?  

  • Feed My Starving Children has a presence in Ukraine, Poland, Romania, and Moldova. They shared, “our partners are requesting more than 2 million additional meals, and we are in the process of producing meals as we receive funding. This is not a short-term situation, and FMSC will continue to assist for the long-term.” 
  • Alight has feet on the ground in Ukraine and shared on their site, “We’ve delivered more than 30 tons of food for the 200,000 displaced people in Lviv and Kharkiv, non-perishables like soup, tuna fish, cereals, and baby food. And we’ve sent medicines and medical supplies including tourniquets, wound dressings, and plasma transfusion kits to hospitals in Sumy and Kyiv.”  
  • Matter shared that they have “provided relief organizations with over 100 pallets of medical supplies to be sorted for Ukraine refugees. These supplies will be airlifted to Poland.” 

What questions should you ask nonprofits responding to the recent crisis in Ukraine? Here are three:  

1.) What percentage of the donation goes directly to the cause?  

2.) How committed is the organization to diversity, equity, and inclusion?  

3.) Are you comfortable with the nonprofit’s financials, and do you trust the dollars are going where you’d like them to go?  

Looking for more resources on giving during a crisis or a natural disaster? Peek here.  

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