Northern Ireland news

Irish News partners with Disasters Emergency Committee in 'Campaign for Ukraine'

A woman who was evacuated from Irpin covers a man on a stretcher with a sweater at a triage point in Kyiv, Ukraine. Picture by AP/Vadim Ghirda
Marie Louise McConville

THE Irish News has joined with leading aid organisations in a special appeal to raise desperately-needed funds for the humanitarian crisis in Ukraine.

The newspaper has partnered with the Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC) - which brings together charities including Concern Worldwide, the Red Cross and Save The Children - in a bid to get help to where it is most needed.

The United Nations has estimated that since the Russian invasion began on February 24, around 2.2 million people have fled Ukraine in a bid to reach safety.

In this time of crisis, the DEC is trying to raise funds quickly and efficiently in a bid to save, protect and rebuild lives through an effective humanitarian response.

The Irish News is now urging people to donate to the 'Campaign for Ukraine'.

The DEC is working with local partners in Ukraine and neighbouring countries to meet the immediate needs of those fleeing, including food, water, medical assistance and trauma care.

It is asking people to donate cash rather than items, which will allow aid organisations to buy in bulk from countries in the affected region which in turn stimulates the local economy.

A donation of £10 will buy essential hygiene supplies for one person for one month, while £20 will provide enough food for one person for a month.

A donation of £50 to the fund can provide blankets to keep four families warm.

Peter Anderson, Northern Ireland Director of Concern Worldwide, said cash donations are "the most efficient way of getting aid to those who need it most".

"It's hard to imagine what it is like for people who are fleeing Ukraine," he said.

"They need bare essentials of shelter, food and water. It is dropping down below freezing."

Mr Anderson said Concern Worldwide and the DEC "are responding and using donations right now".

"The money is also going to be needed in the medium and long term to help people rebuild their lives.

"In Ukraine, we are working with local partners including delivering food and hygiene items and nappies and we are supplying that to people in need in Lviv and Kyiv.

"At the border crossings, leading into Poland, we are assisting in building toilets and providing tents and shelter and providing hygiene supplies."

Mr Anderson said donations will help make life "more bearable" for those most affected.

"I've worked for Concern for 10 years and it never ceases to amaze me, the generosity of people, the response from the people in the north. It is fantastic."

Annette Small, group marketing and communications manager at The Irish News, said the paper is proud to support the vital work of the DEC and its member charities.

"Readers have responded with enormous generosity to similar appeals in the past and we know they will do so again in the face of the humanitarian crisis in Ukraine.

"The Irish News is encouraging people to donate to the Campaign for Ukraine and we hope to be able to highlight how that money is being spent on the ground over the coming days."

Donations can be made at justgiving.com/fundraising/inews, or TEXT AID to 70150 to donate £10 plus your standard network charge

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