Tzu Chi is providing assistance to Ukrainians seeking refuge in neighboring countries. You can help.

ANNOUNCEMENT: For those currently seeking emergency financial assistance from Tzu Chi in Poland, please note that we have reached capacity and are no longer providing emergency support at this time. See our full statement.

For more than 56 years, the Buddhist Tzu Chi Charity Foundation has been providing humanitarian aid to vulnerable individuals, families, and communities. Since war erupted in Ukraine in February 2022, Tzu Chi began mobilizing its humanitarian response to assist those who sought refuge in Poland.

Our operations have historically been powered almost entirely by volunteers, and in Poland, this is no exception. Nearly all of our volunteers there arrived from other countries, each of them dedicating their own time and money to travel. To each of you, we are deeply grateful. We also met many kindred spirits along the way, including those from Poland and Ukraine, who wanted to give back with us. We sincerely appreciate all of those who joined us for their hard work, dedication, and commitment to putting compassion into action.

We began by working with Biedronka, a supermarket chain in Poland, to obtain and provide gift cards (valued at 2,000 PLN) to care recipients who’d recently resettled from Ukraine. These cards were funded by generous donations made by people around the world, wanting to help. Registration for these cards was made available online and in-person. In a few cities in Poland, we began organizing distributions with the help of local volunteers, fellow NGOs, and local authorities.

On May 2, we launched e-registration, with a total of 17 different online links to register individuals by region. However, by May 25, 2022, we reached capacity, as those who registered significantly exceeded the number of gift cards available. At this time, we unfortunately cannot accept any new registrants for emergency financial assistance.

Those who may be currently receiving cards are those who already registered before May 25 or who have been noted as facing ultra-extraordinary circumstances. These qualifying individuals will receive notice of distribution via SMS at the number provided. We estimate to finish distributing Biedronka gift cards by mid-June 2022.

As of June 10, 2022, we have hosted 169 distributions across Poland, giving 18,681 gift cards from Biedronka and 20,588 eco-blankets. Altogether, these have benefitted 46,789 people who’ve fled from Ukraine, and we are honored to have played a part in each of their journeys to a life of safety, comfort, and hope.

For our friends from Ukraine who were not able to register or receive our assistance, we sincerely apologize. We hope to continue our work to provide more help. Our best wishes to all of you.

“Love Around the World”
Prayers for Ukrainian Relief

Tuesday, June 14, 2022 | 19:00-20:30 (GMT+2)
Don Bosco Oratorium | Teatr Oratorium
Kawęczyńska 53, 03-775 Warszawa, Poland

To our friends in Warsaw, Poland, please join Tzu Chi for an interfaith ceremony, “Love Around the World.” We will be using the opportunity to pray for peace, love, and all of our brothers and sisters from Ukraine who are suffering around the world. 

The program, presented in Ukrainian and English, includes:

  • a special video presentation of Tzu Chi in Poland
  • video remarks from Po-Wen Yen, CEO of the Buddhist Tzu Chi Charity Foundation
  • video presentation from Dharma Master Cheng Yen
  • sign language performance of “Love & Care for All” (Ukrainian version) 
  • “One Family” (Ukrainian version)
  • “Prayer” (Ukrainian version) 
  • and a special performance from the Oratorium Children’s Choir

Please come, all are welcome!

Unable to bear the suffering that has resulted from conflict in Ukraine, Tzu Chi founder Dharma Master Cheng Yen has called on the people of the world to harness their compassion and turn it into action. Tzu Chi volunteers are mobilizing humanitarian relief that includes critical supplies like medicine, food, eco-blankets, living essentials, and more.

HOW WE ARE HELPING

Since February 2022, millions of people have fled Ukraine to seek refuge in neighboring countries, including Poland, Moldova, and Romania. Most have minimal items and resources to make a new life for themselves and their loved ones.

To help them get through this difficult period, Tzu Chi is hosting distributions to provide emergency financial support and emergency items. As of August 26, 2022, there have been:

0
distributions held
0
shopping cards

(used at Biedronka supermarket)

0
shopping cards

(Sodexo Cards Distributed)

$ 0
USD given in aid

 ($63,509,000 PLN, or Polish złoty)

0

people who have benefitted

0
blankets
0
Multigrain Biscuits
$ 0
eco-blankets
0
gift cards from Biedronka supermarket
0
packs of living essentials
0
sleeping bags

We are also providing spiritual comfort.

Tzu Chi volunteers are compassionate individuals who recognize that suffering comes in many forms. It includes the trauma of warfare, life-threatening danger, grief, separation from loved ones, and displacement from home. Teams of volunteers have been in touch with local relief organizations to offer spiritual support (regardless of faith) and are also traveling to Eastern Europe to offer this care in person.

Additionally, we are teaming up.

With the belief that we can accomplish more together, Tzu Chi is proactively partnering with local agencies that are already serving those who’ve been displaced. This way, we can bolster important efforts that are already in place. In fact, we have signed several Memoranda of Understanding, or MOUs, with the following non-governmental organizations, or NGOs:

UNICEF, promising $10 million in emergency aid for children and families that have fled into neighboring countries of Ukraine.

Polish Women Can Foundation, committing to medical and spiritual care for women and children, as well as emergency necessities and cash cards.

Camillian Disaster Service International (CADIS) Foundation providing basic necessities, including food and medical services, temporary accommodation, and psychological counseling for more than 40,000 people over the next 5 months.

IsraAID, pledging two years of long-term support that will benefit displaced families, particularly women and children, seeking refuge in Romania and Moldova.

Airlink Inc., ADRA International, Project HOPE, and World Hope International, dedicating three months of essential and medical supplies to healthcare facilities in Ukraine and those that are supporting those seeking refuge in Moldova.

HOW YOU CAN HELP

We are bringing supplies and emergency financial aid to Ukrainian refugees in neighboring countries to Ukraine and the United States. You can join us.

July 25 to 29

The city of Opole held a press conference at the Opole Stegu Arena, which is the same site where Tzu Chi held the distribution, and invited local media to report Tzu Chi’s good deeds. Arkadiusz Wiśniewski, Mayor of Opole, visited the Tzu Chi distribution site again on July 29th to express his gratitude to the Tzu Chi Foundation and volunteers, and presented a certificate of appreciation.

July 16

Tzu Chi’s volunteer team in Poland completed the first phase of distributing Biedronka shopping cards to Ukrainians at the end of June; and started the second phase of distributing Sodexo cash cards in the Polish cities of Warsaw, Poznan and Opole starting from July 16th.

July 8

When a team of Tzu Chi volunteers in Lublin visited the Little Prince Hospice for Children in Lublin on June 11, they learned that the families of sick children in Ukraine assisted by the organization were in urgent need of diapers and washing machines. On July 8, the volunteers donated two washing machines for the sick children’s families to use and distributed diapers to relieve their financial burden.

June 15

Tzu Chi volunteers donated vans to the Future for Children Foundation in Poland on June 15th to help the organization’s efforts in assisting Ukrainian families that it houses, so that they have easy access to transportation to work, school and shopping.

June 14 & 15

Tzu Chi was invited by the municipal government of Opole, a large city in the southwest of Poland, and conducted six large shopping card distributions over two days at the Opole Stegu Arena, with a team of Tzu Chi volunteers from Poznań taking the lead.

June 11

Tzu Chi’s eco-friendly blankets and other supplies arrived in Ukraine from warehouses in Poland. The NGO receiving the warming supplies, Film Industry Entrepreneurs Union (ГО «Спілка підприємців теле та кіноіндустрії»), posted public thank you letter to Tzu Chi on its official Facebook account.

June 9

Tzu Chi’s Service Center Lubin was opened.
The provincial government of Lublin has delegated the management of the provincial cultural center to Caritas; and Caritas offered the space on the first floor, which can accommodate about 80 people, to Tzu Chi volunteers, and shared the office, cafeteria and storage space on the second floor with Tzu Chi. Tzu Chi volunteers made good use of the resource and opened the Service Center.

June 8

A team of Tzu Chi volunteers in Poznan traveled to Moryń on the Polish-German border to care for an entire Ukrainian orphanage for children who are currently housed at the Szafir center. The owner of the center, Marek Kolbowicz, is an Olympic gold medalist, who was misperceived by the public that he was able to recruit substantial support with his reputation. After an in-depth assessment, Tzu Chi volunteers decided to help the orphanage children housed by Marek.

June 5

Tzu Chi and the Polish Women Can Foundation jointly established an activity center in Warsaw, and planned for its opening on June 29th. An pre-opening briefing for Ukrainian families was held on June 5th for enrollment.

June 4

Tzu Chi volunteers held a children’s day appreciation party for Ukrainian refugees in cooperation with CADIS at CADIS’s shelter center in Łomianki, Poland, to celebrate Mother’s Day and Children’s Day with them, hoping that Ukrainian refugees can put aside their sadness and face the future with positive energy.

 

June 2

The Buddhist Tzu Chi Charity Foundations signs a Memorandum of Understanding with Airlink, ADRA International, Project HOPE, and World Hope International.

Over a 3 month period, it outlines the provision of essential and medical supplies to healthcare facilities in Ukraine and those that are supporting families from Ukraine who are now taking refuge in Moldova. It is the first-time Tzu Chi is collaborating with these partners.

Present at the virtual meeting included Tzu Chi USA CEO Debra Boudreaux; Buddhist Tzu Chi Charity Foundation CEO Po-Wen Yen and Project Specialist Branda Huang; Airlink, Inc. CEO Steven J. Smith and Strategic Advisor Emily Sperling; ADRA International VP for Programs Imad Madanat; Project HOPE EVP Chris Skopec; and World Hope International CEO John Lyon, Esq.

Summing up the importance of the partnership, Po-Wen Yen emphasized, “because of all of you, we can reach out to more people in need.”

Play Video

May 25-26

Heading to România from Moldova, Tzu Chi USA volunteers and IsraAID travel to a humanitarian supplies warehouse in Tulcea, Romania. There, relief items were being stored to help meet the needs of those displaced from Ukraine.

The team met with Romulus T. Weatherman Foundation’s Director of Warehousing, Tony Sundermeier, who explained that, at the current moment, “what’s most needed is medicine, trauma kits, bandages to treat people after they’ve actually been wounded. The next thing behind that, prioritized, would be food.”

Illuminating the difficulties of making long-term recovery projects sustainable was Yotam Polizer, the Chief Executive Officer of IsraAID. “Many other donors, they are already shifting away, because that’s just how it is,” he lamented. But, with hope, Yotam said, “Tzu Chi really understands that this is a long-term effort.”

Tzu Chi USA Chief Executive Officer Debra Boudreaux echoed this as well: “temporarily, donation opens the door. Long-term compassion, support is the most important.”

May 24

It has been three months since the start of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Since that time, Tzu Chi volunteers from 12 countries have banded together for a common goal: to help those who are suffering as a result of this crisis. Reflecting on their compassionate contributions in her daily Life Wisdom address, Dharma Master Cheng Yen says that “our volunteers are truly living bodhisattvas.”

Meanwhile in Chișinău, Moldova, the Tzu Chi Relief team visit IsraAID’s Head of Programmes, Daniele Pedretti. “I was there in Kyiv,” he recalls; “I spent three days in the Italian embassy, you know, in the underground, hearing bombs, and small arm shooting and then we were evacuated here.”

Ever since, Daniele and fellow IsraAID team members have been working around the clock to support those who have been displaced as a result of ongoing conflict between Ukraine and Russia. Having overseen additional support to women and children, he observed that “many kids, they draw these scenes with blood – and it’s something that we really need to address… maybe they don’t look like it, but they’re also traumatized. We’re trying to support them through the provision of mental support.”

Of the work that is now ongoing, Daniele says “it’s something that has an impact on the everyday life of people… when I see the kids that are happy and playing, I feel much relieved.”

The Tzu Chi Relief team also visit the Sunflower Center in Chișinău. It is a community center for mothers and children who have fled from Ukraine. Co-Founder Meredith Wiedemer says, “I’m a mother myself, I couldn’t imagine myself in this situation and if I was… I would hope that there was some other mom across the world that would be willing to support me.”

The team also makes a foray toward the city of Palanca, which borders Ukraine. There, the team observed the queue of cars entering, as well the tents setup by fellow NGOs to support migrants as they arrive.

May 23

The Tzu Chi Relief team make their way from Poland to Chișinău, the capital of the Republic of Moldova, by plane. There, they tour the city and head for a meeting with the IsraAID Moldova team, including Head of Programmes, Daniele Pedretti.

Then, they visit a Seniors Residence in the village of Tudora Village in the Ștefan Vodă District, where IsraAID volunteers are providing aid. Martina Paletova, a social worker with IsraAid Moldova, explained, “we had people walking through the border who didn’t know where they were going… We would try to give them some tea, some time, to talk with them, calm them, give the kids time to play, provide a change of clothes, change of diapers, everything.”

May 21

The Tzu Chi Relief assessment team travels to Kraków, Poland. There, they visit one of UNICEF’s 26 “Blue Dots,” child and family support hubs for those who’ve fled from Ukraine. The team learned more about what resources are being made available to those who visit, but also in what areas they need the most support.

Their next stop was St. Camillus Hospital of Tarnowskie Góry, just outside of Kraków. There, Tzu Chi International Medical Association Physician Assistant Ping Tung Chen sought to determine if and how a medical mission might be conducted in subsequent visits.

At minimum, he noted that humanitarian relief workers were under particular strain. “The staff here are overworked,” he observes; “the majority of people have neck and upper back pain; many of these obviously are stress related.” To help in the interim, PA Chen provided on the spot muscle relief at the Blue Dot center.

May 20

he Tzu Chi Relief team travels to Olsztyn, Poland to meet with local officials and observe temporary housing for those who’ve fled from Ukraine.

Observing conditions first-hand and learning of the stressors placed on local aid organizations, Tzu Chi USA CEO Debra Boudreaux explains “time flies by… food is getting lesser and lesser, the support is getting limited.”

However, she is confident Tzu Chi can bolster their efforts in thoughtful and meaningful ways: “it’s a very challenging situation, so we are very grateful to understand what is their major needs, and what Tzu Chi can do, and what kind of challenges they currently face.”

May 19

Tzu Chi USA CEO Debra Boudreaux returns to Poland. Alongside her fellow volunteers, they connect with local partners across Poland, including in Warsaw, Olsztyn, Krakow, to develop plans to host further distributions for families who’ve been displaced from their native Ukraine as well as for long-term recovery.

To begin, the team visited a supermarket called MAKRO Polska in Kraków, where they bought samples of items for grocery bundles that will periodically be delivered to the Polish Red Cross. They also visited tented areas to observe the living conditions of those displaced from Ukraine. They also met with local officials in Olsztyn and toured other shelter sites, too. Families with young children were abundant.

Returning to Warsaw, another distribution went underway, with families gathered at the Salesian Church’s Oratorium. Care recipients receive DA.AI Technology eco-blankets but also shopping cards to use at local Biedronka supermarkets.

May 16-18

Tzu Chi’s humanitarian aid for those who escaped Ukraine and are now in Poland  is in high gear.

As of May 18, Tzu Chi Relief teams hosted 69 distributions of gift shopping cards to Biedronka, a major chain of supermarkets in Poland. This assistance to buy food and other essentials has benefited 19,648 families so far, providing the equivalent of $2,264,560 USD in aid. The families are also receiving DA.AI Technology eco-blankets, with 5,751 given out by May 18.

May 17

The Buddhist Tzu Chi Charity Foundation (BTCCF) and Israel-based humanitarian relief organization, IsraAID sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU). Terms outline support to IsraAID to provide two years of long-term recovery services to individuals displaced from Ukraine and seeking refuge in Moldova and Romania.

These include the provision of basic necessities, medical supplies, as well as psychosocial support. Special attention, however, will be paid to women and children, including the creation of safe spaces for children, educational services, the establishment of remote learning centers, and assistance in integrating into their new communities.

Of the commitment, Po Wen Yen, the Chief Executive Officer of the BTCCF, said “we came to understand that this crisis will have long-lasting impacts on the well-being of children, and with our shared commitment… IsraAID and Tzu Chi will support those affected by the crisis through a holistic and integrative approach.”

May 14

A school gymnasium turns into a Tzu Chi distribution site in the town of Lesznowola, Poland. Present at the distribution are volunteers from Tzu Chi Deutschland (Germany), as well as many locals seeking to give back.

Among those who received Biedronka shopping cards, as well as DA.AI Technology blankets, include 17-year-old Maxim. He arrived in Poland all alone, with his mother having sent him away from their hometown at the commencement of bombing. 

“My mother has a grandfather and a grandmother, and she needs to support them, so she needs to stay there,” he explained. Still, he is eagerly awaiting the moment they may reunite: “I want [her to come] to me, of course, I want to take her from Dnipro, I want [her] to be with me.”

May 8

As Tzu Chi volunteers resume  humanitarian relief distributions in Lublin, Poland, they celebrate a special occasion with local volunteers, local residents, and care recipients from Ukraine. In honor of Global Tzu Chi Day and Buddha Day, Tzu Chi hosts a Buddha Bathing Ceremony for the first time on the streets of Lublin.

As an auspicious occasion for Tzu Chi, its purpose is to share positivity, connection, and blessings with a community composed of many different faiths. While Tzu Chi’s practice is rooted in Buddhism, it shares so many values with those who are seeking compassion, and with those who are in need of relief.

May 3 - 7

To ensure that needs are met with love, respect, and compassion, Tzu Chi relief distributions in Poland were held hand-in-hand with communities from May 3rd to 7th in Warsaw, Poznań, and Lublin, to deliver cash cards for 1,077 people who recently fled from Ukraine. 

At the distribution in Rokietnica, five government office employees and Bartosz Derech, the principal of Rokietnica Commune, even came to assist with the event — additionally offering transportation for older adults, mothers with children, and those who are pregnant, to receive cash cards.

When volunteers read a letter from Dharma Master Cheng Yen in Ukrainian, tears were shed, and hugs were shared. Thanks to everyone’s loving support and the dedication of volunteers, the distributions were completed smoothly. Friendships were formed, and many promised to see each other at the next Tzu Chi distribution.

May 6

The Songs of Solidarity for Ukraine: Tzu Chi Concert for Love & Relief in Warsaw was held in Poland, as part of our humanitarian relief efforts aiding Ukrainian children and families who have been displaced by the recent conflict. Heartfelt moments permeated throughout the concert and the three distributions that followed.

One woman in the audience tearfully shared, “when I heard these songs on stage, I felt the pain of the children who suffered and died because of the war in our beautiful Ukraine.”

Remarking on their performance, singer Anastasia Malasehnko expressed her surprise with the concert’s outcome: “surely we expected emotions and that everybody will be happy to hear our songs, but what we saw – the tears and emotions on people’s faces – just exceeded all expectations.”

May 4 - 5

New local volunteers decide on performing in concert as a thank you to Tzu Chi for their help, and to share their experience with fellow families displaced from Ukraine.

Performers rehearsed for two days before the event, and included the Oratorium Children’s Choir, singer Anastasia Malashenko, and violinist Tatiana “the Anima” Voytovich.

May 1

Tzu Chi hosts a volunteer training session in Warsaw, Poland. Participants included 16 people, all who have recently fled from Ukraine.

During the training, the whole group even performed a rendition of the Tzu Chi song, “One Family.” “I was actually very moved this morning and even cried when I heard them sing ‘One Family’ in Ukrainian… I was very, very emotional, and they sang beautifully with the feeling of love,” Tzu Chi Turkey’s Faisal Hu explained.

For Anastasia Malashenko, one of the trainees, she said that “I was a volunteer in Ukraine and for me being here is such a joy and great opportunity. I feel great being here.”

Another trainee, Irena Romaniv, too, also expressed, “I was astonished by the kindness of these people, I was touched by it. They do an extremely important thing; they teach how to love, they share with joy and sincerity; they help others.”

On-site, to help ease language barriers, were translators like Karima, who helped translate Chinese into Ukrainian. Having been close to the conversations surrounding Tzu Chi’s humanitarian relief, she shared that “today is the third day since I got to know Tzu Chi… We open our hearts and are grateful that you’re here with us and we can work together to accomplish this goal.”

April 25

The Tzu Chi assessment team meets Adriana Porowska, President of the Camillian Mission of Social Welfare in Poland. She explains that local NGOs are reaching the limits of their bandwidth: “during the first days of the war, a lot of Poles were helping, and now we’re seeing that supplies diminished and capacities weakened.” Still, they have been preparing 10,000 hot meals everyday, including other welfare services.

Tzu Chi agrees to help. As a new partner to both the Camillian Mission and the Polish Women Can Foundation, Johan Alwall of Tzu Chi says, “these two organizations… after we see the work that they’ve done with our own eyes, we know that this is a very good place to put Tzu Chi’s resources.”

April 24

To better learn what awaits people as they cross Ukraine’s borders, the Tzu Chi assessment team heads to Medyka, Poland. There, Tzu Chi USA’s Chief Executive Officer Debra Boudreaux observes the many NGOs welcoming people arriving on foot and by car. “You can see a lot of international NGOs; each NGO has their own tents indicating their services,” she observes.

For many, it’s a very long walk. For those in cars, however, it’s a painfully slow shuffle across customs. One young woman says, “we’re waiting here [in our car] for three nights, and now it is the fourth day.” She highlights the restlessness of it: “you can’t sleep there because every 40 minutes we are ‘go, go,’” because the cars must steadily pull up. To give some families comfort, Debra and her fellow volunteers went car to car distributing foods – and smiles.

April 22

Tzu Chi signs a Memorandum of Understanding, or MOU, with UNICEF, the United Nations’ Children’s Fund. In it, Tzu Chi agrees to contribute $10 million to UNICEF’s emergency response to benefit children and families from Ukraine and now seeking refuge in neighboring countries. It comes after nearly 4.7 million refugees reportedly fled the country since conflict began in February.

On the same day, the Tzu Chi assessment team meets local NGOs including the Polish Red Cross. They survey large-scale exhibition venues that may be suitable for distribution, as well as visiting Warsaw Central Station, a Ukrainian Service Center, and other locations that are currently offering services to those from Ukraine.

April 19 - 21

Volunteers from Tzu Chi departed from the United States, Turkey, and Taiwan, and arrived in Warsaw, Poland to form an assessment team. They visit and consult with local partners for upcoming large-scale distributions, as well as site investigation and pre-distribution logistics.

April 2 - 3

Bringing together Tzu Chi volunteers from Germany, the Netherlands and Poland, Tzu Chi distributed emergency cash cards and blankets throughout four distributions in Lublin, Poland, benefiting a total of 451 people.

Volunteers then visited temporary shelters set up by the Medical University of Lublin, the University dormitory, the Red Cross, and Catholic Caritas Internationalis. At each location, they brought relief materials with them and talked to people to provide spiritual comfort.

April 1

Tzu Chi volunteers visit the border city of Lublin, Poland to donate 1,500 sleeping bags to the Red Cross in Lublin, Poland, where many Ukrainians are temporarily sheltered. They also discussed the issuance of cash cards for families to spend on their most pressing needs.

March 29

1,260 sleeping bags, donated by Tzu Chi, arrive in Szczecin, northwestern Poland. They are brought to a collection station setup by the municipal government. Tzu Chi local volunteer Margret purchases other items to add that provide warmth, as well as personal care products. From here, these supplies are being redistributed to those from Ukraine staying temporarily in the stadiums of the University of Szczecin. 

March 24– April 28

Tzu Chi volunteers in Poznań in western Poland, gathered the support of the local Asian community to buy and prepare apples, onions, potatoes, barley, wheat flour, noodles, milk, sauces, as well as toilet paper. The supplies were packaged into 300 living kits, and materials were distributed to the northern village of Skórzewo from March 26 to 28.

March 23

Disaster relief materials prepared by Tzu Chi volunteers across Europe – including the UK, France, and Germany – were gathered in Hamburg, Germany to be sent to Lublin, Poland, a city on the border between Poland and Ukraine.

March 21

Across all of Europe, Tzu Chi volunteers have been moved to help. In Istanbul, Turkey, Syrians who had received Tzu Chi’s assistance during the refugee crisis just a few years ago have been thriving. Inspired by the help they received on their own journeys, they have been eager to pay it forward – and that day has arrived. 

After driving through Moldova, Romania, and Bulgaria, a group of Ukrainian families arrive in Turkey, but with few resources and belongings. Upon their arrival, Tzu Chi Turkey volunteers eagerly present them with gift cards that may be used at the local supermarket, furniture, and emergency supplies. They also offer them emotional comfort as they recount their long journey to their new, but foreign home.

March 19

Tzu Chi volunteer Johnathan Chuang helps longtime friend Oksana Kononets arrive in the United States after leaving Ukraine. Oksana is a fashion model and entrepreneur who uses a wheelchair. Together with her mother, she left Ukraine with Jonathan’s help, making it to safety in California. Accompanied by Jonathan’s family, they all visited Tzu Chi USA Headquarters in San Dimas, CA. There, they met Chief Executive Officer Debra Boudreaux, who was concerned for Oksana’s welfare as she suffers from paralysis in the lower half of her body. Learning more about their situation, Debra provided them with an emergency cash card to help the mother and daughter with their most pressing needs. Appointments were also made through the Tzu Chi Health Center for Oksana to receive medical care in the meantime.

Tzu Chi volunteers visit the Hope House of St. Elizabeth Convent in Poznań, Poland, where 29 refugees from Ukraine are currently staying. There, the Sisters explained that due to limited funding, resources would be exhausted quickly, and assistance was urgently needed. Tzu Chi volunteers then purchased food and daily necessities, enough to support 40 individuals for two weeks.

March 5

Tzu Chi plans distributions across multiple cities in Poland, including the capital of Warsaw, the border city of Lublin, Poznań in the west, and Szczecin in the northwest.

In the meantime, Tzu Chi volunteer Shi’er Zhang, who lives in Poland with her husband, Lukasz Baranowski, begins to provide immediate relief. Together, they gathered rice, noodles, canned vegetables, canned corn, and corn flakes to donate. These items went to Skórzewo in northern Poland, where relief supplies are being distributed at the location provided by the local government.

March 4

Tzu Chi volunteers in Poland contact the Poland-Ukraine Foundation, confirming that hundreds of Ukrainians have arrived in Szczecin, northwest Poland. In the meantime, Tzu Chi volunteers in Poland begin liaising with communities, monasteries, Universities, and even private factories that are now sheltering those from Ukraine. Szczecin, located closer to the Polish-Ukrainian border, is an entry point for many seeking refuge as soon as they arrive in Poland.

Meanwhile, Tzu Chi volunteers in the UK prepare 900 eco-blankets, 1,200 eco-scarves, and other materials, to send as aid to Poland.

March 3

At the Tzu Chi Neihu Service Center in Taipei, Tzu Chi volunteers prepare Da Ai Technology eco-blankets for sending to Europe. Concurrently, Tzu Chi volunteers around the world fundraise to send more help.

March 2

Witnessing events as they unfolded from afar, Dharma Master Cheng Yen, the founder of Tzu Chi, makes a call to action: for people around the world to show their love and gather good thoughts to eliminate disasters. Tzu Chi USA launches a fundraiser, Love & Compassion for Ukraine, to procure and send relief supplies to those from Ukraine who are seeking refuge in neighboring Poland.

February 24

Russia commences armed conflict with Ukraine, simultaneously sparking the world’s worst refugee crisis since the Syrian Civil War.

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