Ukraine, a peaceful democratic nation, is under a brutal military attack by Russia’s President Putin. With war on the headlines, our global community stands in support and solidarity with the people of Ukraine, those resisting the invasion, and those fleeing war.
Between distressing images of war, and more urgent news about the climate crisis, I know how hard it can be not to feel overwhelmed with anxiety, grief and fear. One way to remind yourself that there is real power and real hope in solidarity between people is to take action alongside thousands and millions of others standing up for peace and a future free from oppression across the world.
Here are some practical ways you can help Ukraine and the Ukrainian people right now:
1. Stay informed and double-check the information you get.
This war is being fought on many fronts, and disinformation, especially on social media, is one of them. Before sharing something, pause and double-check: it can be as simple as googling the headline. You can follow reliable local reporting about Russia’s invasion of Ukraine here, here and here.
2. Take action online or on the streets, stand with Ukraine and demand peace.
Global leaders must feel the pressure to stand against war and aggression in any way they can. Find and join an anti-war protest in your city, tweet at your elected representatives using the #StandWithUkraine hashtag, or write or call your member of parliament and ask them to support sanctions against Putin’s Russia. You can also join this campaign targeting the assets of Russian oligarchs in Putin’s inner circle.
3. Donate to support humanitarian aid.
If you can, consider supporting a group or initiative working to offer medical, material and humanitarian aid to people in Ukraine and to people fleeing the Russian invasion and seeking refuge in neighbouring countries. Verified ways to support financially are listed on this live resource page by Global Citizen. Ukrainian and international initiatives you can donate to are also listed here.
Every person, whoever and wherever they are, has the right to live in peace and free from oppression. Today, the world’s priority must be to protect the lives and livelihoods of Ukrainians, end Putin’s aggression, and restore peace, democracy and human rights. But tomorrow, we need to hold those guilty of this crime accountable.
To build lasting peace, and to confront the reality of the climate crisis in time, we need international cooperation, not war. For peace, for human rights, and for climate justice, we need an end to the crimes and oppression perpetrated by the fossil fuel industry working with violent dictators like Putin.
Putin started this war, but fossil fuels keep funding it. It’s Russian oil and gas profits that filled Putin’s war chest, and the world’s reliance on Russian pipelines let him invade a peaceful nation without fear of consequences. It’s our money flowing into Russian oil giants that are funding violence in Ukraine.
We must not stop at boycotting Russian oil and gas. Now more than ever, a rapid and just transition away from all fossil fuels everywhere in the world must start if we want to turn things around. The power lies in us, people, to start charting our path to a safe and liveable future.
Friends, while today our focus is on bringing solidarity and aid to the Ukrainian people, together with partner groups, we’re preparing to keep working for climate justice that will emerge when this war is over. We could double down the pressure on fossil fuel companies culpable for enabling dictators, or their financial backers. We could focus our efforts on demanding that policymakers urgently end our reliance on coal, oil and gas, and immediately jump-start the broad transition to renewable energy. One path is clear: we will keep showing up for peace and climate justice.
The power of any movement is in the strength of its unity and solidarity in the face of a crisis. Hand in hand with the Ukrainian people, we’re standing for peace and against war and oppression across the globe. Peace, democracy and freedom are necessary for the crucial work for climate justice to continue, for people and nature to thrive, and for us to build a safer world for everyone.