Welcome Back!

You have Gifts for Good in your basket.

Welcome Back!

Last time you were here, you were looking to help vulnerable children and families. Your support can save and change lives.

One year ago today, children and young people in Ukraine had their lives turned upside down by the conflict. Many Ukrainian families woke up to bombs being dropped on their towns, missed phone calls from frightened relatives and the rumble of airplanes flying low.

David*, a 13-year-old boy from a town near Kyiv, is just one young person forced to leave his home after the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

“The day before we were sitting in the classroom, the teacher came, we studied the evacuation, we were shown where to hide if something happened. But on 24 February, at 4 am, my mother came in and said, ‘you’re not going to school because the war has come to us.’ I was scared and surprised.”

Families grabbed what they could carry and walked out their front doors – unsure if or when they’d be able to return. They left behind homes, schools, communities and were separated from brothers, fathers and friends who stayed behind to join the fight and protect their homes.

In the last twelve months a staggering 18.2 million people left everything behind and fled into neighbouring countries like Moldova and Poland. Since then, 10 million have returned home.

On the first day of the invasion five planes flew over the town. After that, they had three days of quiet. “On the fourth day they started firing from everywhere.”

“We were constantly sitting in the basement. Then the water and the light disappeared; everything disappeared, we sat in the dark and cold. We did not leave the house; it was very scary,” said David.

“It was very cold in the house; it was not heated at all. So, we moved to my grandmother’s house because she had a gas boiler. We were there for 11 days.”

“Then they started shooting. We ran out of my grandmother’s house in panic, red bullets flew over us, hot and glowing, we saw them over our heads. We ran into the cellar and stayed there all night.”

After a night in the cellar, the family decided it was time for them to evacuate the town. His father led the family and other people in the town to the evacuation site.

“The last time we saw my dad was leading us to the evacuation site. My dad went to save other people, and we stayed where people were waiting for buses to evacuate. We rode the school bus, then the bus broke down and we moved to another one. We drove from Kyiv to Volyn for almost a day. We were very tired on the way.” 

David and his mother arrived at the camp tired and hungry. The camp provided them with food and shelter so they could rest. It was the first time in weeks they felt safe.

In times of violent conflict, children and young people are particularly vulnerable to trauma and often cannot access education or health care. ChildFund is working with local partners on the ground to provide food, hygiene kits, medical supplies, warm clothes, blankets, electric heaters, transport and fuel to families impacted by the Ukraine conflict.

ChildFund Alliance’s member organisations, ChildFund Deutschland and We World, are responding in Ukraine and Moldova. They have equipped emergency shelters for children and their families, and their mobile teams are providing counselling and referral services for refugees arriving in Moldova from Ukraine.

At the Displaced Persons Centre (DPC) a psychologist Olesya, diagnosed David with a high level of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). She set up sessions with David to help him understand and learn to manage his trauma.

“It was a little scary in the first session, and then I got used to it. Now I know how to ground myself, I like meeting new people, drawing to help me deal with the stress and memories.”

After two months of meetings with a psychologist, David’s symptoms of acute stress and the level of obsessive memories decreased. Gradually he began to feel safe, made new friends, began to sleep better.

As the conflict continued and the harsh winter set in, the hopes of returning home were crushed for Ukrainian families. Temperatures have dropped below freezing in Ukraine this winter, and essential infrastructure such as water supplies, hospitals and schools have been hard hit.

Homes are continuing to be destroyed, leaving more than 17 million people without adequate shelter and protection and in urgent need of food, clean water and basic health care.

With no end in sight David’s father has told them to stay at the displacement camp.

“I really want to go home but it is too dangerous to return. I feel hope though that I’m going home and soon everything will be over.”

Children and young people from Ukraine have and continue to face a level of trauma and crisis many of us cannot fathom. You can donate today to support families impacted by the Ukraine conflict. Your support will help to deliver relief to those in need as the crisis unfolds.

Donate today to support children like David living through conflict.

*Name has been changed to protect individual’s identity.

Around the world, children are not living the childhood that they deserve, which is why ChildFund Australia has never been more important. We respond to the urgent needs of children now and work in partnership with children and their communities to create lasting change for the future.

There are many ways you can be a part of this work, but there’s one gift that will ensure we are there for children in need for generations to come… a gift in your will. It’s a simple and inexpensive process that can change lives. If you’re ready to consider the most important way to protect the future for children, please read on. 

What is a Gift in Will?

It’s a monetary gift written into your will for an organisation that you trust. It can be as simple as a few sentences outlining what you’re giving and an identifying name and ABN of the charity or charities you have chosen. 

A gift to ChildFund Australia will help provide resources for the most pressing needs of children in the future. This flexibility increases our capacity to respond to changing crises and priorities, such as emergency food assistance to communities in Kenya impacted by drought and climate change or children and families  caught up in new and ongoing conflict in Afghanistan and Ukraine. 

Why give?

 Whether it’s setting up safe places for play after natural disasters or prevention of violence for high-risk children and youth, your Gift in Will will make a visible, lasting impact.

Is writing a will expensive?

We have partnered with Gathered Here – Australia’s top-rated online Wills platform so that we can offer you the opportunity to write your will for free (plus free updates for life). It takes less than 10 minutes to create your legacy. 

How do you leave a Gift in your Will?

There are three main types of Gifts in Wills you can give to ChildFund and other charities: 

1. Give a residual gift

Nothing will affect this amount, but the amount will also not grow over time, though you can always update your Will in the future.

2. Give a specific amount

This is the most effective option where you specify a portion of your estate (after specific gifts are distributed and your debts are paid) that you want set aside for ChildFund.  This is a simple way to leave a gift that won’t interfere with any specific gifts to loved ones. It will also retain its value over time.

3. Give a percentage

This is a percentage of your entire estate to be left to ChildFund.

You’re invited to contact Jess Walker at jewalker@childfund.org.au or (02) 8281 3121 for confidential assistance, or for more information, visit our Gifts in Wills page.

What are some other ways to give to ChildFund?

If you’re not interested in a Gift in Will yet, here are some other ways to support ChildFund:

1. Donate monthly to a charity that aligns with your values

Here at ChildFund, we work in partnership with children, local organisations and communities to respond to humanitarian emergencies, make lasting change, and always promote children’s rights in alignment with Global Goals.

When you donate monthly, you can provide a reliable source of income for a charity. In addition, this monthly donation means the charity can work on more significant projects, like building schools and helping more people, rather than just seeing what they can do every day.

2. Gifts for Good – switch out giving physical gifts

We’re all tired of socks, right? So, if you’re stumped for Christmas, Valentine’s Day or birthday gift ideas this year – whether for yourself or someone else – why not give or request one of our Gifts for Good instead? Gifts for Good allow you to help provide food for a month, a dairy goat, a handwashing station, a mosquito net or a dozen chickens to families and communities worldwide. These presents are the gifts that will keep giving to so many people.

3. Start a Facebook birthday fundraiser

Now that the holiday season is nearly over, many people start planning and looking forward to the next big gathering in their lives – their birthday! So, why not incorporate your birthday celebrations into your new year’s resolution? Even if it’s very early, starting a fundraiser for your birthday on Facebook can be a great way to get the buzz going around the event. You can remind your friends and family every month or so by sharing or commenting on the fundraiser, and you can create a birthday hashtag and start a group. Start your ChildFund birthday fundraiser today!