Razom Emergency Response project continues to grow and develop at an incredible speed thanks to the support of our donors and dedicated volunteer network in the US and Ukraine. The war and resulting humanitarian crisis has only continued to escalate over the past week, putting our logistics operation on the ground in Ukraine into stark focus.
The first shipments of humanitarian aid procured by Razom delivered to Berdychiv in Zhytomyr Oblast on March 9th
The reality is that delivering aid past the warehouse of our partners at Kryla Nadiyi in western Ukraine is an extremely difficult task. The very first shipments of tactical medicine (purchased & shipped on day two of the war) made it into the hands of civilian defense corps in Kyiv and Zhytomyr oblasts on March 9th. It was four days later, on March 13th, that more aid made the journey east – this time by two mini buses heading to Kyiv (including Brovary) and Poltava (with an extra leg to Sumy) oblasts.
Russian forces are actively shelling and endangering transportation infrastructure across the country therefore safe routes are constantly changing. In addition, humanitarian needs on the ground change just as fast, if not faster. Speed and boots on the ground are of the essence. Razom has both, which gives us a unique chance to deliver the aid acquired abroad to the end user in Ukraine, knowing that your donations are in the right hands.
Aid is packed into small vehicles allowing volunteer drivers to maneuver more nimbly. Coordination with civilian defense corps (the ultimate volunteer network in Ukraine today) via satellite phones, which offer the most reliable form of communication, strengthen our logistics chain on the ground in Ukraine. There’s also a verbal verification system in place that ensures volunteers know they’re putting the delivery in safe hands. When available, small civilian drones are another important tool for our volunteers to scope out safe passage routes and share valuable information in real time. These tech enabled emergency response supplies have made a big impact on our volunteers’ ability to work effectively in executing the logistics chain in Ukraine. We are enormously grateful for the brave and trusted group of the people who carry out this work.
Tactical Medical Aid being prepped and loaded for distribution in Ukraine. Markings read “Sumy” and “Poltava”
As we celebrate each and every delivery of humanitarian aid that makes it into the hands of Ukrainians, we continue to follow a repeatable logistics process for procuring and delivering aid from abroad to warehouses in Poland and western Ukraine. Euromaidan Warszawa is our trusted partner in Warsaw that receives shipments procured throughout western Europe and delivers them to western Ukraine. Meest America is delivering shipments procured from the United States directly to Ukraine. So far, approximately $4M has been spent on tactical medical supplies, communications supplies, and logistics support. All of our aid is received in western Ukraine by our partners Kryla Nadiyi (Wings of Hope). They warehouse, sort, and prepare orders of aid that then gets distributed further. A small group of engineers, in collaboration with two Razom volunteers (in the US and Ukraine) have developed an online system to help track requests submitted by a centralized network of civilian defense corps central command. These requests then get cross referenced to active hotspots and prioritized based on safe routes.
The many faces of Kryla Nadiyi volunteers accepting, sorting, and organizing humanitarian aid for distribution across Ukraine
We are incredibly grateful to the volunteers and partner organizations who work daily on this project (most days staying up until 4am!) coordinating information, connecting volunteer networks, and helping to take in, protect, and distribute shipments donated through Razom. To our donors, your continued support ensures we can make an impact across more parts of Ukraine. We can’t wait to keep sharing those stories with you as they develop.