Newsletter #20: No war fatigue here

Maybe you’ve been tired lately – war fatigue is real.  But you need to know that Ukrainians are still doing everything they can to beat back the occupiers to build a free and prosperous Ukraine, and Razom is still doing everything it can to help.  We’re paying attention, showing up, and doing the work to save lives and advocate for Ukraine, because we know that every day that we do, we get closer to victory.  We cannot do it without your support.

Dear Razom community,

Above is a screenshot from one of our regular org-wide meetings that bring together Razom TacMed, Hospitals, Grants, Advocacy, Donations, and Operations teams, who span multiple countries (and continents!) and all work together towards one goal.  As the war continues, Razom will not be stopping its humanitarian mission anytime soon.  We are doing everything we can to increase the amount of aid that gets in the hands of Ukrainians in need and doubling down on our advocacy efforts to ensure this war ends quickly and with Ukraine victorious.  This is important to all of us (not just Ukrainians).  Below is a snapshot of some of our work this past week:     

  • The TacMed team is working really hard to find supplies that converge on best quality, good price, and speedy delivery.  As a result, we have supplies arriving weekly from the U.S., U.K., Canada, Lithuania, Netherlands and more to Razom’s warehouses in Ukraine, U.S. and Poland.  They then get distributed by our very own team to the Ukrainian armed forces, territorial defense units, emergency responders, and key hospitals across Ukraine. 
  • Over 300 Razom volunteers have become experts at packing IFAKs (individual first aid kits).  Here’s a video where one of our lead U.S. warehouse volunteer coordinators, Andriy Boychuk, explains everything that goes inside one (and how much it costs) so that you can be an expert too.  To date, the team has shipped over 51,000 IFAKs.  This includes tens of thousands of tourniquets and Celox gauzes that are being packed inside or shipped separately. 
  • Dozens of special orthopedic trauma kits have been delivered to Ukraine this week.  They include orthopedic external fixators of various types, as well as tools and screws to be used by orthopedic and trauma surgeons when they perform urgent surgeries on the wounded.  These kits are in extremely high demand and Razom is once again helping to fulfill the most urgent needs to save lives.

The super connectors on the Razom Hospitals Team have been unstoppable as well.  This team coordinates and manages the shipment of our in-kind donations:

  • The team procured 88 portable patient monitors which will help to monitor the critically ill patients in hospitals and ICUs.  They’re currently being distributed to hospitals across Ukraine.
  • The team also procured 7 pallets of KCI wound vac consumables that are already on their way to Ukraine.
  • MD Boris Bronfine, along with Speare Memorial Hospital, donated one Orthopedic OR Fracture Table and two Anesthesia Machines.  The equipment left for Ukraine via a donated container space by the Paul Chester Childers Hope Foundation.

Razom’s latest grantee, Ukrainian Veterans’ Foundation, was awarded $120,000 toward supporting veteran-owned businesses in Ukraine.  UVF is a governmental organization designed to promote the reintegration of veterans into civilian life, and providing support to veterans and their relatives, family members of the fallen, captives, and missing persons.  One of the businesses they support is Ukrainian Military Coffee (Kava Military) that opened an outpost in Lviv and donated all of the profits from their opening day to Razom!  

Several months ago Razom awarded its first grant to the Mykola Pyrogov First Volunteer Mobile Hospital (ПДМШ), the largest non-governmental mobile hospital in Ukraine that’s been providing mobile medical aid to civilians and soldiers since 2014.  Today they work mostly in Kyiv, Izium and Kharkiv regions and run a team of 40 doctors and supporting volunteers with 20 vehicles in operation.  Razom’s $70,000 grant went towards purchasing fuel, running repairs, and overhead.

Two weeks ago they evacuated Masi Nayyem, which began a long series of incredible events that saved his life.  You can read the story of what it takes to rescue just one person on the front of the war in Ukraine here.  Masi’s brother is Mustafa Nayyem, an Afghan-Ukrainian journalist, former member of parliament, and public figure who’s famous for starting the Maidan Revolution in Ukraine with a facebook post.  

Part of our motivation for awarding grants to home-grown organizations in Ukraine, like ПДМШ, is to help build institutions that strengthen the country.  Razom has vetted to support over 90 organizations thus far through its Grant program and Partner program and we’re working to built a network of these institutions to ensure we foster connections and relationships among them that build a more prosperous Ukraine for the long term. 

Before you read any further, Razom’s Advocacy team (and the rest of us at Razom) ask you to stop what you’re doing and follow this link to contact your representatives.  Ukraine ending this war by winning is the key to stopping russian aggression and the crises in Ukraine and around the world that it has spawn.  By making your voice heard, you can make a difference!

If you missed the Advocacy Team’s Twitter space last Friday, you can listen to it here.  They’ll host another one this Friday at 1:00 pm EST.  Meanwhile here’s a quick recap of what they’ve been up to the past week:

  • The team is expanding its knowledge base and working closely with Ukrainian civil society to have Ukraine’s voice be heard within the U.S. and on the Hill.  The Advocacy Team’s success is in its cooperation with thought leaders and decision makers.
  • Some of the folks they met with last week:
    • Toma Istomina, Deputy Chief Editor at the Kyiv Independent (an independent Ukrainian media outlet) and one of Forbes 30 under 30 Europe 2022,
    • Michael Bociurkiw, global affairs analyst, journalist, Sr. Fellow at the Atlantic Council,
    • Sevgil Musayeva, Ukrainian journalist from Crimea, Ukraine and Chief-Editor of internet publishing Ukrayinska Pravda, one of the founders of KrymSOS, and TOP 100 most influential people in the world in 2022 according to TIME,
    • Terrell Jermaine Starr, host of the #BlackDiplomats Podcast and Sr. Fellow at the Atlantic Council.

Below is a roundup of events (info panels, concerts, film screenings, gallery shows, and other fun/informative community gatherings) we most recommend you check out.  Engage with brilliant voices from Ukraine and find exciting ways to support fundraising efforts.    

In Florida:  On June 21, 9-10AM Athleta & Lakewood Ranch Yoga of Sarasota, Florida are running a special yoga class “Summer Soulstice for Ukraine”, a donation-based session put together with peace for Ukraine in mind, benefiting Razom’s Emergency Response.

In New York:

  • Until June 23rd, Gallery Arte Azulejoin partnership with Mila Rabij Arts Consulting to presentYana Bystrova: Approaching a Chaotic Reality.  Currently based in Paris, Bystrova is from Kyiv and is a third generation artist in her family.  Her work has evolved from figurative to abstract and hybrid forms of expression, with a strong conceptual emphasis on color, the ambiguity of perception, and interpretation.  
  • On Saturday, June 25, 5-8PM the Gowanus Dredgers Canoe Club Boathouse will host a concert by Ukrainian Village Voices at the Creekers Jamboree.  Ukrainian Village Voices is a NYC-based collective of Ukrainian and non-Ukrainian singers whose mission is to preserve and revive the polyphonic singing style of Ukraine’s villages.  All donations are going to Razom.
  • On July 1, 10PM – 5AM at the Knockdown Center in Queens, NECHTO record label will showcase for the first time outside of Ukraine.  In 2020 and 2021 the label held a series of large rave parties in Kyiv which drew thousands of attendants from 21 countries.  In 2022 NECHTO was scheduled once again in Kyiv, but due to Russian aggression in Ukraine, it didn’t run.  This time with an amazing lineup of talent, all ticket proceeds will go to Razom.
  • On Sunday, July 10 at 1PM the Forest Hills Jewish Center is hosting a Classical Music Concert to Support Ukraine
  • On Wednesday, July 27 from 6-9:30PM the Ukrainian Institute of America is hosting the Sunflower Gala fundraising for Razom’s humanitarian relief work.  The evening will include a special menu designed by Veselka, and special performances by Pavlo Glyntov, Vira Slyvotzky, and Dan Bower. 

In Virginia:  On June 24from 6-19PM the Beach Gallery in Virginia Beach is hosting a Hope for Ukraine Art Show & Silent Auction with all proceeds going to either Razom or the World Central Kitchen.  

In D.C.: 

  • On Sunday, June 26 at 4PM, Washington Chamber Orchestra will hold a Benefit Concert at the Church of the Epiphany in Washington, D.C to help support the Ukrainian refugees and families suffering in Ukraine and nearby countries. 100% of proceeds will go to the Life and Tree Church in Prague, which delivers aid directly to refugees in Ukraine and neighboring countries.
  • On Sunday, June 26, 5PM at the Washington National Cathedral Maestro Shafer conducts Ein deutsches Requiem—described by Brahms as his “human” Requiem.  The City Choir of Washington dedicates this concert to the people of Ukraine: in memory of the victims of war in Ukraine, and for those who mourn.  Her Excellency Oksana Markarova, Ukrainian Ambassador to the United States, is the honorary patron of this concert.

In Ohio:

In Pennsylvania:  On Sunday, June 26 from 6:30-8PM the Pittsburgh Ukrainian community is hosting a concert at Carnegie Carnegie Music Hall to raise funds for humanitarian aid for Ukraine (including Razom’s work).

Online/virtually:  FairTrade Caravans is hosting a fundraising event to benefit Razom for the month of June.  Their unique fair trade products are made or grown with: no child labor, fair pay, safe working conditions, and sustainable practices.

Thank you so much for reading this newsletter, for keeping up to date with Razom, and for your support of Ukraine.  We’re so glad to be on this journey together.   

Stay razom.

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