May 23, 2022 - With 14 million Ukrainians displaced from their homes because of Russia’s brutality, it’s incredibly difficult to get information, cash, and resources, especially to those bunkered down in occupied regions. That’s why the nonprofit UkraineNow has teamed up with the Footage Foundation which is sending out compassionate cash and SMS messages to women there.
Footage’s initiative FEM SMS is messaging women in Ukraine about trafficking prevention, mental health, and how to get cash to their friends and families. Dr. Kristen Ali Eglinton, co-founder and executive director of Footage told BBB World News Live with Lucy Hockings that it took one woman two weeks to get money to 19 families in the occupied regions of Ukraine.
“There is a huge food shortage and a lot of violence. People are in desperate need for money. So, we are facilitating unconditional cash transfers,” said Eglinton. “We are also making the voices of women the center of the messages. It’s important they know they can take part, volunteer, and help rebuild their own country.”
The nonprofit UkraineNow is working with Footage to provide technological support and volunteers to help with processes on the ground.
“We are very excited to partner with Footage Foundation,” says UkraineNow founder Artur Kiulian. “It’s a beautiful collaboration and shows how much smaller organizations operating on the ground are capable of. It’s a huge mission undertaken by very passionate human beings across the world.”
Footage is using SMS technology because when the internet goes down in war zones, SMS will still get through to people.
Eglinton says the messages are trauma-informed, compassion-focused, and built with a collection of voices of women inside Ukraine. She calls it a human-centered design process.
Footage is a feminist organization raising voices to elevate lives through creative research, wellbeing interventions, and advocacy—all advancing the UN Sustainable Development Goals.
The technology corporation NVIDIA donated a desktop supercomputer to UkraineNow in May to help the nonprofit manage resources and help civilians and refugees displaced by the Russian war.
Keith Strier, the vice president of worldwide AI initiatives with NVIDIA presented the computer to UkraineNow founder Artur Kiulian at a meeting in Irvine, CA on May 16, 2022.
“Our goal is to help his volunteer data scientists train AI models that tackle complex problems around the growing humanitarian crisis in Europe, such as optimizing refugee logistics,” said Strier on an Linkedin post.
UkraineNow.org is a global initiative based in Los Angeles. The 501©3 nonprofit was created within hours of the Russian invasion on February 24th, 2022 to mobilize volunteers worldwide to help evacuate Ukrainian children, the elderly, and those with disabilities from the war zone. Today, UkraineNow has more than 2,000 volunteers.
The Ukrainian Ambassador to Mexico Oksana Dramaretska endorsed UkraineNow in April 2022 as an agent of information and education about the crisis. California State Senator Josh Newman (D-29) supported UkraineNow’s fundraising efforts with a Certificate of Recognition on April 30, 2022.
MEDIA: UkraineNow.org founder Artur Kiulian is available for interviews
Publicist Deborah Sherman of JackTracy Marketing, Denver
303.887.7249 | Deborah@JackTracyMarketing.com
Footage co-founder and Executive Director, Dr. Kristen Ali Eglinton spoke to BBC World News Live anchor, Lucy Hockings about the work of the Footage Foundation with women in Ukraine.