World YMCA and YMCA Europe have launched a fundraising campaign to support the work of YMCA Ukraine in bringing emergency aid to those in the thick of violence in their own country, and to YMCAs in neighbouring Moldova, Romania, Hungary, Slovakia and Poland who are already providing support to those fleeing the violence.
‘We stand as one; we work for peace’, said Carlos Sanvee, World YMCA Secretary General.
The first priority is support for YMCA Ukraine itself, in bringing life support to those who have been uprooted by the violence. YMCA Ukraine will be providing accommodation, food, clothing, medicines and personal hygiene products, as well as psychosocial support delivered in groups and individually to children and young people. This support will be delivered through YMCA centres in seven cities: Verkhovyna, Odessa, Lviv, Lutsk, Kremenchug, Kirovograd, Zaporozhye, Zdolbunov.
The second priority is supporting YMCAs in neighbouring countries as they continue to provide the same types of support for those who have fled Ukraine.
‘This is stage one of a longer-term plan which builds on YMCA’s unifying role building up young people and their communities’, says Juan Simoes, YMCA Europe Secretary-General. ‘Longer-term, the funding will support peace programmes and initiatives like the existing YMCA Europe ‘Roots for Peace’ programme, as well as advocacy on peace and security.’
Y USA has also launched a fundraising campaign here.
YMCAs meet to share, to plan
YMCA Ukraine met YMCAs from around Europe and the world today.
‘The YMCA is a unifying organisation’, said YMCA Europe President Emma Osmundsen. ‘Today is about the European and global YMCA Movement standing in solidarity, and unifying to magnify our collective influence.’
The meeting heard testimony from YMCA Ukraine, as well as Romania, Moldova, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, and Hungary, and YMCAs in Belarus and Russia.
‘War cannot and will not divide us – we are a peace organisation’, they said.