A personal blog, especially one focused on acting and the entertainment industry, isn’t generally a place to discuss politics. So this isn’t a political post. It’s a post about supporting other human beings when they need it the most.
At some point in our lives, every single one of us has stood alone, trying to deal with some kind of pain, while the world around us just carried on, either not noticing, or choosing to turn the other way while we suffered. Remember just for a moment how you felt when that happened to you. Now imagine how you would feel if it wasn’t just you, but everyone you knew, loved and cared for, and not because of some short-term loss or sadness, but because their lives were literally being destroyed on a daily basis in front of their eyes.
Recently, an actor friend of mine, Kate Skripko, posted on her Facebook about the situation she and her family were facing in Kyiv. They have since made their way to their hometown, Lviv, but she is still posting daily about the situation, and calling on everyone to do what they can to offer the support and aid they need.
So what can we do? Yes, people are getting burned out by the constant updates and calls to action. But in Ukraine, people and places are literally getting burnt out!! Sending hopes and prayers and putting a Ukrainian flag on your profile picture is a nice gesture, and shows those suffering that we stand with them as one. But much more can be done to contribute to saving the lives of innocent people who have been dragged into a conflict they neither caused nor want any part of. Governments, those people and companies with power, money and platforms should be doing everything in their power to end this violence now. But regardless of what they are or aren’t doing, even those of us with no power, with no voice, and no connection to these millions of people who are suffering, can and should still be doing something to help.
The list below is 7 things you can do to help the innocent victims of what is happening in Ukraine right now. If you have power, money and influence, you can do more. But anything that actually contributes to the well-being and safety of those people who need it most is better than simply ignoring the situation and scrolling on. And if you choose to do that, please ask yourself why, so at least maybe you can understand your actions, even if others do not.
Even a small amount helps
1. Medical supplies and humanitarian aid (https://redcross.org.ua/en/donate)
2. To help children affected by war (https://www.unicef.org/ukraine/en/donate-now)
3. To support journalism (https://www.gofundme.com/f/kyivindependent-launch)
4. To support refugees (https://donate.unhcr.org/hk/en-hk/general)
Understand the situation, the costs and the consequences and share what you learn with others
5. Follow the news from trustworthy sources (https://kyivindependent.com/)
6. Follow informational accounts on social media (https://www.instagram.com/withukraine/)
IF NOTHING ELSE:
Let others know what they can be doing to help
7. Share this list
To be clear, Ukraine isn’t the only place that is suffering. There are always places and people, usually the most innocent and vulnerable, that suffer because of the choices of the few. The Democratic Republic of Congo, Afghanistan and Yemen are sadly some examples. Why should Ukraine get more attention than any other? It shouldn’t. So maybe we should take this tragedy as a reminder of the situation that so many are facing and use it as a call to action for everyone in need.
This isn’t even about countries, or even people. It’s simply that violence is wrong. Taking up arms against children, families, innocent citizens, just because you feel threatened or undermined, is not self-defence. It’s wanton violence and it’s reprehensible. Those responsible must be held accountable, and hopefully one way or another, they will be. Until then, every one one of us should make a choice, take a stand, and do something that will make a change, no matter how small. Because if all of us make even a small difference, in the end, it becomes one hell of a big change.