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Church gives $4 million to help refugees in Europe

Church gives $4 million to help refugees in Europe

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has given $2 million each to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, or UNHCR, and the World Food Programme, or WFP, to help those displaced by the humanitarian crisis in Ukraine.

The donations were announced Monday, March 14, on

The $2 million gift to UNHCR is projected to help an estimated 40,000 displaced families. The Church and UNHCR have partnered together since 1991.

“As the world watches the heartbreaking events in Ukraine unfold, I am still able to find moments of hope because dedicated organizations like Latter-day Saint Charities chose to step up and support refugees during their greatest time of need,” said Anne-Marie Grey, CEO of USA for UNHCR.

“This emergency gift ensures that families fleeing the horrific violence in Ukraine will continue to receive the care and shelter they need after harrowing journeys. This gift is so much more than just a fleece blanket or warm place to sleep for a refugee family. It shows families fleeing that there is still a compassionate global community ready to help,” Grey said.

Refugees at the Krakovets Polish border crossing on March 4, 2022.

Refugees at the Krakovets Polish border crossing on March 4, 2022.

Marco Frattini, WFP

The funds are being used immediately for core relief items such as blankets, solar lanterns, tents and shelters, said Lacey Stone, UNHCR’s director of private sector engagement and partnerships in the United States.

“This is going to go to those in need on the ground in Ukraine and neighboring countries right away,” Stone said. “Latter-day Saint Charities has been providing relief and comfort to refugees for decades. And we just want to say how grateful and appreciative we are.”

The Church donation to World Food Programme is expected to provide food for some 11,000 people for four months. WFP has a goal to reach more than 3 million people inside Ukraine, with the organization also working with UNHCR to assist the 2.5 million refugees who have fled to other countries.

WFP teams are leading on-the-ground efforts with emergency telecommunications and logistics on behalf of the United Nations.

The Church and WFP have worked together for the past eight years in feeding the hungry around the world, including service to fill critical gaps of relief during the COVID-19 pandemic.

From the earliest hours of the current humanitarian crisis in Europe, the Church has helped through its membership in the Europe Area and in partnership with several relief organizations, according to the announcement, offering a summary page on how the Church is reaching out.

Families from Ukraine seek safety in Hungary.

Families from Ukraine seek safety in Hungary.

Credit: Photo courtesy of UNHCR

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