My post yesterday brought a load of response from people in the know about what the Ukrainians are facing and how you can best help them. Check the comments in my previous blog if you want to hear about other places you can send funds.
First, this is from Timmy, the friend who coordinated my trip to Ukraine in 2018. He has been engaged with the people there for over twenty-six years:
Reliant, is sending 100% of all donations to Ukraine. I am one of two people giving primary oversight to the fund. We help with evacuations, lodging, and food for refugees, but also are helping with people who are sheltering in place. We also put resources into the hands of people who are ministering and caring for people on the frontlines. Because there are so many needs and the resources have a limit, we are trying to first care well for people within our relational circles. So far, we can still get funds to people in Ukraine immediately. Here is the link to help: https://reliant.org/ukraine.relief.fund
He is in touch with many people throughout Ukraine and this is his summary:
It is horrific beyond words. What is shown on the news is sanitized. It is gut-wrenching to have thousands of people that you know, and hundreds of close friends in some kind of unimaginable crisis. In this day and age, we are getting real time information of friends who are in bomb shelters hearing missiles overhead and constant air raids, ones who are trying to flee and cannot get on the train or a bridge is blown out and they have to find a new a way in their car.
Thousands of people we know are hiding in bomb shelters, are living in constant danger, and many are frantically trying to flee the country. Putin has uprooted and destroyed the lives of tens of millions of people, and their suffering is immeasurable. Words cannot express how gut wrenching and heart breaking it is to know the horrors which our friends and all the people of Ukraine are experiencing.
One dear friend who was at the conference with you, sat on the border for 80 hours cramped in a cold car with his family. He is glad to have made it out, but his parents and his sister’s family are hunkered down in Kyiv amidst constant shelling, and he asks “but what now? What will we do?” Another family you know dhas had some shelling where they live in the West, but they look at what is happening with the war and prepare for the worst, while caring for as many as they can that have fled Kyiv and cities east of them.
I could go on and on with the horrible information we receive hour after hour. Close to forty–eight million people’s lives have been completely uprooted and changed forever in the past week. We care about them and we deeply love them. We are praying and we are doing all we can to help them by raising funds, and coordinating relief to meet their needs for travel, housing, food, and basic necessities. You can help them at the Reliant fund: https://reliant.org/ukraine.relief.fund
This email came in today from one of the Ukrainian families I met there who live in the western side of Ukraine. This is :
It is the 8th day of the war. It seems to us that this is the 8th week. Half an hour ago I talked to my brother-in-law, who is the pastor of the church in Kharkiv. His family is now in Poland, and he himself remained in Kharkiv. It has been heavily bombed. People are dying. A man and a woman died today on the way to the maternity hospital. She was to give birth to twins. The children were saved by doctors, but they are orphans from birth.
Many people are hiding from the bombing of Russian planes at subway stations. Alexander said that this is a poignant spectacle. The whole floor of the station is filled with people sitting, lying down, eating … People are upset and depressed. Putin and his demons continue to convince their people that the Ukrainian military is doing this.
Yesterday, I asked the Lord how much more we have to endure and I understood the following. We must endure this terrible war until the full enlightenment of all the people of Ukraine and all Western countries comes. Many Ukrainians before this war sympathized with Putin and Russia. In a few days the situation changed dramatically.
Western countries flirted with Putin, and used him as a prostitute to satisfy their business interests. We hope that the whole civilized world has seen. Of course, the enlightenment of the Russians is yet to come, but I hope that we will no longer have to endure the bombing because of them. Only God can give them insight.
This day passed quietly for our region. We continue to help refugees reach the borders, looking for those who can accept them in Europe. Today, the military in the city was provided with water and food. We pray unceasingly and believe that the Lord will give us victory.
Our whole family, church and Ukraine are infinitely grateful to you for your prayers and all your help.