Save the Children, a global nonprofit committed to ensuring the health, safety, and protection for children experiencing emergencies and crises, is adding more teams on the ground in Ukraine as many children have become refugees since Russia’s invasion. According to Save the Children, they are appealing to give $19 million towards efforts in Ukraine, and some of that funding is coming from cryptocurrencies. Save the Children provides toys, food, hygiene kits, and winter kits among many other essentials to help children survive and cope with an escalating crisis. Additionally, with their extensive experience of handling crisis and emergency situations involving children of all ages, they provide advice to adults on how to deal with children’s inquiries and concerns.
Save the Children reports that there are 7.5 million children in Ukraine who are caught up in the conflict with Russia facing displacement, family separation, loss, and uncertainty. Not knowing whether they will survive, see family, or return to their homes ever again is weighing heavily on their minds and emotions.
With their history of experience working with children going through crises, including war, across the world, Save the Children has provided adults with recommendations on how to speak with and respond to children as they seek answers and reassurance. Their suggestions include listening to children when they want to explain something they saw or heard, not “overexplaining” the situation depending on the child’s age and their understanding of conflict or war, reassuring them that leaders around the world are trying to resolve the situation, and allowing children who want to help by giving them an opportunity to do something. Though every child is different, these recommendations may provide a helpful starting point for understanding how to approach conversations with concerned children amid this crisis.
According to their website, “Save the Children was founded to protect children caught up in conflict, and we continue this work today. In 2019, we responded to 130 humanitarian emergencies in 64 countries. In a humanitarian emergency, we provide safe spaces for children so they can feel safe, play and learn. We help children that have been separated from their families, ensuring they are taken care of through safe, secure legal systems, and reunite them with their families, whenever possible. We also provide emergency relief and healthcare, psychosocial support, temporary schools and cash grants to help families rebuild their lives.”
Expanding funding for their efforts, Save the Children was the first nongovernmental organization to accept a cryptocurrency donation since they received a bitcoin donation in 2013 for their response to the typhoon that hit Southeast Asia. According to Ettore Rossetti, Lead Advisor for Digital/Marketing/Innovation Partnerships at Save the Children US, “Crypto donations have enabled truly borderless giving and is not only decentralizing finance but also decentralizing philanthropy,” adding that “Crypto has become the biggest alternative funding stream for global emergencies like Ukraine.”
Standing with children in times of crisis is the mission of Save the Children. Working with local organizations, their support reaches all communities in need, including those that are hard to reach. Recognizing the vulnerabilities of children during emergency situations, Save the Children ensures their safety and protection. As the conflict in Ukraine escalates, Save the Children is fully committed to supporting all children in need as they find their courage, strength, and hope during this difficult time.