‘The Rinat Akhmetov Humanitarian Center was the first who gave a helping hand to people’, a volunteer from Shchastya
On August 10, the Rinat Akhmetov Humanitarian Center held a briefing dedicated to the third anniversary of its establishment in the press center of The Ukrainian News. At the briefing for national media, the Center representatives shared the results of their work within the framework of the largest humanitarian mission in Eastern Ukraine.
The Humanitarian Center was established on 6 August 2014 on the initiative of Rinat Akhmetov, when the extent of military operations and their consequences for civilians dramatically increased. Only high concentration of the resources and clear coordination of the efforts could help the victims. Therefore, under the umbrella of the Humanitarian Center, the efforts of the Rinat Akhmetov Foundation for Development, Football Club Shakhtar and business assets of SCM Group were united together. It was an unprecedented experience for the country to create a support system that was based on the best humanitarian practices in the world, as well as on its own algorithms and techniques that became exemplary.
‘Until August 2014, we had been working under peaceful conditions and could not even imagine that soon we would have to work under the conditions of military operations. The Foundation was quickly and efficiently transformed into the Center, we were working for 20 hours a day in conditions of extreme psychological stress. The hotline melted, people run scared and waited for help from us. The lives of thousands were at stake. Everything depended on our responsiveness and professionalism,’ Irina Temerko, head of the Humanitarian Center programs and projects, said.
Since the first days of the war, the Humanitarian Center began evacuating people from the flashpoint areas and resettling them in a peaceful territory. In total, 39462 people were evacuated. On August 11, the Humanitarian Center hotline was created to coordinate actions and inform people of the possibilities to receive humanitarian aid. For the entire period of cooperation, we received more than 700000 calls with aid requests and thanks for support.
‘In 2014, the Humanitarian Center was the first who gave a helping hand to the people affected by the war. It gave them not only food products, but hope and understanding that they are not left to their fate, Olga Tyurina, a volunteer of the Humanitarian Center (Shchastya, Lugansk region), relived experiences. Arriving at the issuing points for survival packages, people said that now they are not afraid to be starved to death. Some of those who first came to receive aid became volunteers later’.
For three years, the Humanitarian Center has been supporting the most disadvantaged groups of society in the zone of military conflict - pensioners, children, disabled people and families with many children. In total, during the Center existence, 1153323 people have obtained its vital support.
304 truck convoys with humanitarian aid have been dispatched, 131220 tons of food products have been delivered, 11833951 survival packages have been provided. Nowadays, in the zone of military conflict (on the Ukrainian territorial footprints) there are 25 stationary issuing points. The mobile charity teams deliver food packages to the most remote areas of the near-front zones.
The sick and wounded children as a result of military operations are of supreme concern of the Rinat Akhmetov Humanitarian Center. For three years, more than 4000 children have received targeted aid for medical treatment, which included provision with drugs, organization of urgent treatment, rehabilitation courses in sanatoria inof Ukraine, rendering assistance for expensive heart surgeries.
‘When establishing the Humanitarian Center, Rinat Akhmetov had no purpose other than to help civilians of Donbass to survive. Nowadays, the Humanitarian Center is proud of saving more than a million of human lives. For every person our help is a condition for survival. We do believe that the piece will triumph over our country but now there are people who extremely need our help,’ Aleksandr Vishnyakov, director of the Rinat Akhmetov Humanitarian Center, commented on.