Over 264,000 euros raised to help Ukrainian families – the Ukraine ribbon brings Ukrainians and Finns together

Sales of Ukraine ribbons raised over 264,000 euros to help Ukrainian families that have come to Finland. The funds raised are being used to organise communal activities and events to bring Ukrainian and Finnish families together. The funds are also being used to provide food gift cards to Ukrainian families in need.

The Ukraine ribbon fundraising programme, organised by K Group and the Mannerheim League for Child Welfare (MLL), raised a total of 264,166 euros. The funds were raised by selling Ukraine ribbons in K Group grocery stores and Neste K service stations. The fundraising programme started in December 2022 and ended in June 2023, and it resulted in more than 75,000 Ukraine ribbons being sold. 

By far the largest number of Ukraine ribbons were sold in Uusimaa. Urban residents stood out among those participating in the fundraising, with most ribbons being sold in Helsinki and Turku. South Karelians were also active in the fundraising, as ribbon sales in the eastern cities of Imatra, Lappeenranta and several smaller locations were higher than average.

“We’d like to thank all our customers who bought a Ukraine ribbon, and our K-retailers who highlighted this important subject in their stores. This fantastic fundraising result for Ukrainians is a great way of continuing our long-standing cooperation with MLL,” says Timo Jäske, Director, Sustainability, at Kesko’s grocery trade division.

“We’re very happy that Kesko could participate in this important collaboration and make it possible to arrange local assistance for thousands of Ukrainians across dozens of Finnish municipalities,” says Leena Poutanen, MLL’s Director of Communication and Fundraising.

Activities foster friendships and food gift cards provide practical assistance in daily life

A portion of 45% of the funds raised will be spent on communal activities organised by MLL for Ukrainian families, another 45% on food gift cards for K Group grocery stores, and 10% on MLL’s service production. The service production includes support, guidance, communication and coordination services for local organisations arranging activities for Ukrainians. Services such as translation and interpreting services are key in allowing Ukrainians to find activities and communicate more smoothly with Finns. 

The activities organised by MLL provide enjoyable and communal activities for families, as well as the opportunity to get to know other local families. MLL’s district organisations and local associations organise activities according to the needs and wishes of the families in their area. Funds have been granted for activities including various family events, courses and trips. Many volunteers participate in organising the activities, and Ukrainians actively participate in planning them.

“So far, the events and activities we’ve organised have been positively received across the country. War has ruptured families and friendships, but we’ve already seen new friendships forming between Ukrainians and Finns. Many Ukrainians have also been inspired to organise activities in their local areas,” says Poutanen.

The food gift cards are distributed by MLL’s district organisations and local associations to Ukrainian families who need them. Some of the food gift cards were already distributed in the spring when the funds raised in the first months of the programme were allocated. This made it possible to start providing assistance faster.

“With the final fundraising result, MLL will distribute nearly 2,400 food gift cards with a total value of over 118,000 euros to Ukrainian families in need. The food gift cards are a practical and much needed type of assistance for families’ grocery purchases,” says Jäske.

Ukraina-rusetti-perheitä-perhekahvilassa-770px.jpgUkrainian families in MLL family café

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