The heroes of our time (part I)

The heroes of our time (part I)

“Volunteers of culture” was founded by two friends, Dmytro and Sasha. In peace times, both worked in creative spheres. Now during the war, one must adapt, so now they help refugees and the armed forces of Ukraine. They distribute humanitarian aid to those in need across Ukraine.

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How did you start your volunteering ?

At the beginning of the war, Sasha and I, we left Kyiv. In a few days we sent our families abroad. It happened that left just us from all our friends' company. 

Before the war I worked as a film director, managing large teams. Sasha was the manager of the artist and also had the organizational skills. In addition, since peaceful times we have been familiar with many non-indifferent opinion leaders.

We realized that we could quickly find money to help. So we became volunteers!

We did not know how volunteer organizations work. From the very beginning there was a goal to help the Armed Forces of Ukraine and the territorial Defense. So it turned out. The first thermal imager, backpacks stuffed with useful things, army boots, bullet proof vests, clothes and food. 

Over time, we realized that in the city where we live there are already more than 20 thousand refugees as well as the amount of refugees in cities nearby is getting more. Our friends from the Netherlands offered to send the first humanitarian aid. Thus, due to the locals, we received a premise, where we built a warehouse with our own hands. The first humanitarian aid came. And we decided to help the migrants as well. These are residents of Volnovakha, Mariupol, Mykolaiv, Irpen, Bucha, Kyiv, Kharkiv and Donetsk regions.

Who and how do you help? What is the algorithm? 

Principle of our work is assistance to specific people we know, frequently they are friends of friends. The people who report where the help goes. Then, everything that we bought, or got, gets in the specific hands of the users in time, and not remains in the warehouses of transfer points.

How do you determine the goals, which you gather donations on? People send you the requests?

Yes, people write to us directly. Instagram was full of the number of requests, after we started the Telegram channel, where we report with checks, where donations go. We also reached out to local administrative centers in Lanschina, Nadvirna, Yaremche, Vorokhta and Kolomyia to understand what is needed.

How much humanitarian aid has gone through your hands?

We have already helped 4 hospitals (with stoves and medicines), bought 10 armored vests, 3 thermal imagers, staffed 15 backpacks for the Armed Forces of Ukraine (karemat, sleeping bag, first-aid kit, underwear, power bank, pocket stove, cigarettes, food).

Every day we supply hygiene and food between the central administrative centers of several neighboring cities, children's homes and families. Clothes, shoes, pampers, baby food for migrants. Not bad for a couple of guys, we think.

Now we are fundraising for tactical gloves, glasses, knee pads, backpacks, sleeping bags, first-aid kits, karemats. This is the most frequent request, we have.

Do you have friends abroad? Do they help you with supplies?

We have many friends abroad. And we want to thank them. They help us very much. And it is not only Ukrainians working in aid centers. They are from the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, Poland. People who can buy anything, collect and even bring to Ukraine. You're cool!

How many things have passed through us, you can look at our Telegram channel. We report for every step! The most memorable thing is 90 pairs of men's shoes! They flew for a week, for the territory defense and migrants.

Does Sasha think about the registration of his political party?

Sasha? I hope so. With such speed we will really be able to help people. I say, as his deputy (laughs)!

You started to shoot fun videos, which have gone viral in one moment. What is it - a way to get rid of the negative emotions?

To be honest, there was no aim to attract attention.

We only tried to distract people for a second by a volunteer positive.

And now we are glad that at least in this way we can promote the awareness of our activity. More people began to help our country, our fighters! And this is the main thing!