International business commits to support Ukraine disaster assistance

14:10, 08 August 2008
Ukraine
1197

UPS, 3M, Boeing, Cargill, Coca-Cola...

UPS, 3M, Boeing, Cargill, Coca-Cola, AES, MaxWell, SASI, Winner Automotive Group, First International Resources, and the Asters law firm, all members of the U.S.-Ukraine Business Council (USUBC), have made substantial commitments to provide funds and in-kind contributions to assist in the flood disaster assistance program in Western Ukraine, according to a USUBC press-release forwarded to UNIAN.

 Additional commitments from the international business community are expected very soon, according to Morgan Williams, SigmaBleyzer, President of the U.S.-Ukraine Business Council (USUBC). 

About 60,000 flood victims in Ukraine and Moldova urgently need food and clean water, the international Red Cross said Wednesday. Heavy rains and floods two weeks ago left more than 30 people dead, dozens missing and forced 30,000 to flee their homes in the two eastern European countries, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies said.

"These are the worst floods in two centuries," said Joe Lowry, the agency`s representative for the region.

"I`ve worked with the Red Cross for 40 years and no one I know has ever seen anything like this, nor have their parents nor their grandparents," Alexandra Biltsan told Lowry in the village of Chernohusi in western Ukraine.

"People are in desperate straits, food is urgently needed as well as clean water. Many people have lost crops, gardens, livestock, poultry as well as their food reserves."

In western Ukraine, some 40,000 houses were flooded, and more than 30,000 hectares (74,000 acres) of croplands and nearly 700 kilometers of roads were severely damaged, the federation said.

 The "Ukraine Disaster Assistance Fund" has been created by the U.S.-Ukraine Business Council (USUBC), Ukrainian Federation of America (UFA), Ukrainian-American Coordinating Council (UACC), U.S.-Ukraine Foundation (USUF) coalition, to raise money and in-kind support from individuals, institutions, organizations and businesses for the people, homes and villages in Western Ukraine hit in late July by what officials are calling the worst rainstorms in two centuries.

 The Fund will be setting up a working office in Lviv in cooperation with the USUF office there.  Disaster work will also be undertaken with the private efforts underway under the leadership of famous Ukrainian singer "Ruslana."

The "Ukraine Disaster Assistance Fund" coalition met with U.S. Ambassador Taylor in Washington on Thursday to discuss the flood damage as assessed by U.S. Embassy personal, the U.S. government response and how the U.S. private for-profit and not-for-profit sector can work together with the U.S. government and the Ukraine government to provide effective assistance.

The "Ukraine Disaster Assistance Fund" is now accepting donations.  To make a donation, please go to www.usukraine.org/donate.shtml.  Scroll down the page and mark your donation for the "Ukraine Disaster Assistance Fund."

 Checks can be made out to the "Ukraine Disaster Assistance Fund/USUF"  and mailed to the Ukraine Disaster Assistance Fund, %U.S.-Ukraine Foundation,  1701 K. Street, NW, Suite 903, Washington, D.C. 20006. 

 The "Ukraine Disaster Assistance Fund" will be managed by the four major organizations in the coalition to see that the funds donated by individuals, institutions, organizations and businesses are used responsibly and effectively.

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