You may have heard that GreaterGood’s CEO, Tim Kunin, was recently in Ukraine handing out tourniquets to military members who can use them to save lives. But his trip was meant to do far more than that to help the Ukrainian people. Here are some of the other things Kunin accomplished in his four short days on the ground in Ukraine.
Kunin was able to view the devastation caused by the explosion of the Kakhovka Dam and other areas that have been destroyed by Russian attacks. He visited the MRIYA Charitable Foundation and a summer camp for children of migrants. He also traveled with Siobhan’s Trust to cook pizza for local people in need of hot meals.
Unemployment is one of the largest issues facing many Ukrainians right now. Companies have been forced to shut down or lay off workers due to supply-chain issues, damage from Russia’s attacks on Ukrainian infrastructure, and reduced demand. GreaterGood is helping to combat that in two ways. Firstly, we’ve commissioned a local blanket manufacturer to produce all of the blankets that our donors fund to be given away to people in need. Sourcing our blankets from Ukraine reduces shipping costs and the time it takes to get the blankets to the people, as well as providing many jobs. However, it does require good communication between our company and theirs, which has necessitated Kunin’s visits.
The other way we’re combatting unemployment is to seek out local artisans to purchase goods from for our online stores. Whenever Kunin travels to Ukraine, he looks out for opportunities to create these collaborative fair-trade agreements, which bring beautiful handmade items to our customers and provide a living wage for artisans who might not otherwise be able to support their families.
“We are trying to identify products which are made in Ukraine that can help both the producer and the gift recipient,” Kunin writes. “As part of that effort, we are importing a container of Ukrainian made wool blankets and scarves to the USA. We will soon become the exclusive distributor of the largest selling Ukrainian made wool-blend scarf brand in the USA.”
As mentioned above, Kunin also spent some time helping Siobhan’s Trust and Greater Good Charities cook and hand out pizzas and other food items to people in need in the Zaphorizhzhia region. Volunteers have flocked from places around the globe – the USA, Ukraine, England, Scotland, Kenya, and Zimbabwe, just to name a few – to provide food to people who have sporadic access to power and other resources and who are often unable to procure food for themselves and their families.
During Kunin’s time in Ukraine, the volunteers cooked and served upwards of 2,000 pizzas a day to locals in need. But these pizza events are more than just a hot meal for hungry people; they also provide a sense of hope, camaraderie, and fun for those who are struggling.
Lastly, Kunin’s trip was meant to help determine the ways in which we can tweak our strategy to be of even more assistance to the Ukrainian people. Their situation is ever-changing, and we always want to do our best to be in the right place at the right time with the right type of assistance. We are striving to continue to improve our understanding of the needs of the Ukrainian people and seek new ways to support them more effectively.
Your generous donations continue to help us aid the people of this war-torn country, and we will keep working to ensure that every dollar of your gift is used in the best way possible. Click below to find out how you can help.