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Mar 2022 Updates

Aid to Ukraine

Prince Harry and Meghan, The Duke and Duchess of Sussex, through their non-profit The Archewell Foundation, have made donations to a number of organizations working on the ground to support the people of Ukraine, including HIAS, The HALO Trust, and a coalition of Ukrainian media such as The Kyiv Independent, supported through the organization Are We Europe. We are also continuing to work with our partners at World Central Kitchen and The World Health Organization to assist with the global and local humanitarian response to the crisis. 

Finally, our hearts are heavy as we acknowledge the recent loss of a member of our veteran community in Ukraine, who was defending his country from attack. We also pay tribute to the brave men and women from our global veteran community, past and present, who have long protected their countries and families with unparalleled strength and determination. We are continuing to work and speak with the Invictus Games Foundation daily to help however we can.

All of us at The Archewell have been inspired by the work these organizations have taken on– and also by the stories from those on the frontlines. 

We are sharing some of these stories below in the case that you will be moved to take action. If you are able, we hope you will support or amplify their efforts.

Take action to help the people of Ukraine


Helping Ukrainian Families Resettle

Founded in 1881 as the Hebrew Immigrant Society, an organization assisting Jewish families fleeing the pogroms, today HIAS provides welcome, safety, and freedom to refugees of all faiths and ethnicities around the world.

HIAS is on the ground in Poland and Ukraine, where they are assisting refugees as they cross the border. The organization is also developing an approach to humanitarian efforts in Moldova, Romania, Slovakia, and Hungary. In addition to providing funding and resources for housing, food, and transportation, HIAS has also rushed emergency funding to Right to Protection, a longtime Ukrainian partner specializing in legal assistance, and advocating for refugees, asylum seekers, and stateless persons who have been forced out of their communities and homelands.

Read a dispatch from HIAS’s Director of Emergency Response, who is in Lviv.

Lauren, HIAS Senior Director of Emergency Response

“On March 9th, a HIAS team traveled first to Poland, then through the Medyka border crossing into Ukraine, to  meet with local partner, Right to Protection. On arrival at Medyka, the team was greeted by nearly a half mile of tents lined with grassroots efforts to provide food, water, hot coffee, diapers and warming tents for those who had just crossed the border.

Once on the Ukrainian side, it was a lot quieter and the feeling more glum. The team overheard stories from a number of Ukrainian women who were returning to Ukraine to be with families; their husbands, brothers and sons having not been able to join them in Poland.  On the drive into Lviv, there were several checkpoints set up: sandbags and anti-tank spikes preparing for the possibility of a Russian invasion.

Lviv is a city that was known to Ukrainians as a tourist destination. Cobblestone streets and ancient stone architecture make the setting quite romantic. In this context, the seemingly normal life carrying on was strange, given the war raging in other parts of the country.  People went about their every day, going to cafes, strolling down streets. Even a tourist trolley was operating.

All of this happened against the backdrop of an influx of humanitarians, journalists, paramilitary types, and 200,000 internally displaced persons (IDPs) that arrived in Lviv last week alone. Resources are squeezed, and finding a place to live is near-impossible: rent prices are skyrocketing. Underneath what appears to be normalcy, you find the reminders of war: lines of IDPs waiting for information on where to get assistance, statues wrapped, and windows boarded up to protect from missile and bomb blasts. At the train station, a jam-packed sea of people are towing what they have of their possessions as they head toward the border destinations; fleeing Ukraine for an indefinite period of time. At night, the sound of air raid sirens became all the more frequent, and by the time the team left, they sounded throughout the day.

Overall the mood in Lviv at this time is apprehensive, and there’s a feeling of disbelief.  What Ukraine has become today is something that would have been unimaginable three weeks ago, and we don’t know what it will be in three weeks time, now that military advances are moving in the direction of Lviv and Western Ukraine. What we do know is that the worst is not yet over, and that bringing much-needed aid, advocacy and attention to the millions of Ukrainians fleeing violence will be a marathon and not a sprint. It is with this in mind that HIAS continues looking for ways to help and bring light to the darkness of this current situation.

Donate to support the HIAS humanitarian response in Ukraine.

The Halo Trust

Protecting Families from Unexploded Ordnance

The HALO Trust trains and employs the residents of war-torn communities throughout the world  to remove landmines and dangerous explosives — making land safe and available for farming, grazing, transit, commerce, and play. As the world’s largest humanitarian landmine clearance charity, HALO also educates families and children about the risk of unexploded ordnance and offers critical aid to communities.

HALO— which has been working to remove explosives in the Donetsk and Luhansk regions since 2016 — is operating right now on the ground in Ukraine. The organization is delivering medical supplies and assistance, providing shelter to families fleeing the violence, and distributing risk education messages in person and on social media about how to recognize and avoid deadly weapons and unexploded missiles, which now litter the streets. HALO is also mapping the location of explosives in Ukraine, and preparing to clear rockets and bombs when the situation permits.

Donate to HALO’s Ukraine Crisis Fund to support this work.

Watch a conversation between Prince Harry and two HALO workers on the ground in Ukraine.


Feeding Refugees on the Frontlines

Led by Chef José Andrés, World Central Kitchen (WCK) arrives on the frontlines of humanitarian, climate, and community crises to provide meals to those in need. They see food as the fastest way to offer hope, rebuild a sense of community, and put lives back together in the wake of disaster.

Since the conflict in Ukraine began, WCK and their #ChefsforUkraine partners have provided 1 million meals in more than 55 cities across 5 countries. In addition to distributing food within Ukraine, WCK has opened a new Relief Kitchen in Przemyśl, Poland — a city several miles from the border that’s receiving tens of thousands of refugees every day. There, WCK has established 24/7 meal distributions at 8 border crossings, with capacity to serve 100,000 hot, nourishing meals a day.

Read a dispatch from a volunteer working in WCK’s relief kitchen.

Olena, WCK Volunteer

“I’m originally from Lviv, and came to Poland to study International Relations five years ago. In recent weeks, my grandmother, sister, and younger brother all came here because they’re afraid of staying in Ukraine. The men in my family — my brother and uncles, as well as my friends — have joined the army. They’re at war.

I work at Restaurant Rutyna in Przemyśl. When Russia attacked Ukraine, our chef and team partnered with World Central Kitchen to make sure that refugees coming from Ukraine could get a warm meal. My heart cries constantly these days, and it’s hard to sleep; it’s a relief to work here and keep busy. Many we serve tell me they haven’t eaten in three or four days. They light up when they receive the food, and offer a blessing in their own language. It’s hard to explain how I feel, but I just want to thank all of the people around the world who are helping us — the people of Ukraine. I just want peace.”


Delivering Life-Saving Medical Supplies and Expertise

The World Health Organization (WHO) is the arm of the United Nations that connects nations, partners, and people to promote health, keep the world safe,  and serve the vulnerable.

The escalation of the conflict in Ukraine has seen rising casualties  and injuries, as well as a devastating impact on health systems of countries in the region. WHO has worked to ensure a constant flow of life-saving equipment and medication to Ukraine and neighboring countries so that they have infrastructure and expertise to meet the urgent needs of civilians and refugees. WHO is in the process of establishing a support hub in Poland, and is building surveillance and health information dissemination networks to detect and respond to hazards and disease outbreaks.

Read dispatches from a doctor and a psychiatrist working in Lviv

Nataliya, Volunteer Doctor

“There are many people coming to Lviv. Pregnant women, women with small children, even two and three-week-old babies. Every day there are more and more of them. They are all stressed and tired. Their houses were bombed, like in the destroyed city of Kharkiv.

People arrive and they have nothing. People arrive and they don’t know what to do or where to go. They don’t have money, not to mention any belongings. They are just praying for support, and their situation is really terrible.”

Orest, Volunteer Psychiatrist

“People are arriving in Lviv directly from the bombed cities — 24 hours by train. They are running away from these awful, horrible situations, and they are arriving here in a shock state. This is acute trauma, and we are trying to stabilize, provide shelter, and some safe space. It’s quite possible to predict that the consequence of these events will be much more widespread.”

Support frontline healthcare for Ukrainians and refugees in crisis by donating to the WHO Health Emergency Appeal for Ukraine.


Ensuring Access to Critical Reporting

As Ukrainians experience the uncertainty and danger of conflict, access to trustworthy information, accurate news, and well-sourced reporting remains a top priority.  Across Ukraine and in neighboring countries, local and independent media outlets such as The Kyiv Independent continue to report under dire and threatening circumstances, providing a vital information lifeline to communities and ensuring that the world gets a detailed and factual picture of what’s happening day-to-day. These outlets continue to need support for security equipment, medical supplies, and resources for their ongoing war reporting.

Support Ukraine’s local and independent media organizations and journalists by donating to Are We Europe.


Mental Health Resources

Periods of humanitarian crisis can have a profound effect on the mental health of many, including in this case Ukrainians living around the world, refugee communities of all kinds, families previously forced to flee their homes due to war, and those who have lost loved ones to violent conflict. For those with close ties to Ukraine, the anxiety and uncertainty is only growing. In response to this, our friends at Project Healthy Minds have put together a resource guide for anyone who may need mental health support at this moment.


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