Culture News Politics Society, 31/01/2017

Kharkiv Poet Set Up Charitable Foundation

Zhadan is striving to unite the volunteers, help Army and to take care of Ukrainian Donbas.

Well-known Ukrainian writer, musician and activist Serhiy Zhadan has registered his charitable foundation.

This event is far from being unexpected: since the summer and autumn of 2014 Zhadan has been engaged in volunteer activities with his friends and fellow artists. Initially, they helped the Ukrainian Army in ATO zone, they were arranging concerts for the soldiers, raised money and bought the necessary equipment for military troops. Later the poet has focused on supporting educational, cultural and medical institutions in the so-called gray zone on Donbas.

For more than 2 years the volunteers of Zhadan’s group visited and supported dozens of schools, kindergartens, orphanages, libraries, cultural centers and hospitals in the settlements in immediate proximity to the front line bringing goods from books and toys to medical surgery equipment and ambulances.

According to Zhadan, his colleagues and he want to make their volunteer activity organized, “to give it greater scope and regularity” and to be able to help more vulnerable people in the situation of war on Donbas, to make them feel that “all Ukraine cares about them”.

The poet says he realized that their charity work will be needed further on, and it should be continued in regular, steady and consistent form.

“We crucially need to unite,” says Zhadan to KhO. “Our charitable foundation includes everyone who helps, everyone who joins, who supports us and trusts us. And we are not a few people really, there are many of us and together we can do a lot of things in defiance of fear and despair.”

Also, Zhadan is sure that cultural projects on Ukrainian Donbas would help avoid the further ignition of the war. “Art and social support would make the people in the east feel that they are an integral part of Ukraine, and that Ukraine “is not saying goodbye” to the Luhansk and Donetsk regions,” explains Serhiy Zhadan.

Several art events have already been scheduled for February within the new foundation work; they are aimed at raising funds for the children of deceased Ukrainian combatants.