Presbyterian Church Donates $1M to Ukrainian Relief

Source: Presbyterian Mission

Since the outbreak of hostilities between the Russian Federation and Ukraine, the Presbyterian Church U.S.A. has donated nearly $1 million in response to the humanitarian crisis.

During a special denominational three-week appeal, congregations have been extremely generous. Expressing gratitude, the Director of Presbyterian Disaster Assistance (PDA) Rev. Dr. Laurie Kraus said, “We are grateful for that.”

As a result after just one week of the special appeal, PDA sent a $50,000 emergency grant to its partners working in countries bordering Ukraine. More will be sent this week. “It’s a small amount for now,” Kraus said. “We will move to larger grants in the mid-term and long-term to help partners develop, among other things, sustainable housing solutions.”

Adding to Kraus’ remarks, PDA’s Associate for Refugees & Asylum Susan Krehbiel said, “All our partners have said they’re in this for the long run,” after speaking with partners across the European Union.

During a denominational webinar, the PDA executives were joined by Ellen Smith, World Mission’s regional liaison for eastern Europe, and Sue Rheem, Representative to the United Nations at the Presbyterian Ministry at the UN.

To date, approximately 6.5 million Ukrainians have been internally displaced, and 3.5 million have fled across international borders. The result is approximately a quarter of Ukraine’s 43.2 million people being displaced.

Highlighting the resiliency and networks of congregations within the Reformed tradition, Krehbiel said, “We in the PC(USA) have a distinct way of responding…We are in relationship with Reformed churches and ecumenical partners in central Europe.”

One of these partners, Hungarian Reformed Church Aid has mobilized a volunteer network of 3,500 volunteers to distribute about 250 tons of food serving approximately 140,000 refugees across 10 locations.

Another partner, International Orthodox Christian Charities in neighboring Romania is using PDA grant funding in two border cities in partnership with the government of Romania to organize refugee reception centers.

“PDA looks for partners with local experience and areas of expertise,” Krehbiel said, “so we can make sure we are providing much-needed services to all in need.”

As the needs of refugees continue to develop, PDA and denominational officials remain resolute that they are here for the long haul and are actively looking for more partners as additional grant funding becomes available.

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Source: Presbyterian Mission