Support the Maidan Medical Support Fund
Request for financial donations
Momentous events are happing in Ukraine. What started as a protest by students in favor of an associate agreement with the European Union, turned into a people’s uprising against an autocratic and corrupt regime. After three months of mass demonstrations at the Maidan in Kyiv, and later in cities all across Ukraine, the old rulers are fleeing the country. What is happening before our eyes is truly a revolution led by the first post-Soviet generation.
The revolution came at a very high cost. Thousands of demonstrators were wounded, some losing eyes or limbs, and at least one hundred activists were shot dead by riot police and snipers operating from buildings around the square. Undoubtedly, the number of dead will rise considerably, as many people are unaccounted for and there are fears dozens might have been killed and left in mass graves in the forests.
During this period, hospital services were set up at the Maidan, for a very urgent reason: wounded demonstrators who were delivered to regular medical services were abducted by riot police, beaten up and in some cases killed. For example, on February 19, riot police broke into the intensive care unit of the Emergency Hospital in Kyiv, turned off all the equipment and abducted the critically wounded demonstrators who were undergoing medical care to an unknown destination.
The Maidan medical teams, all volunteers of various ages and backgrounds, performed heroic deeds. They worked at the front line, rescuing wounded activists, while they themselves were under constant attack. In violation of all rules of engagement and conventions, riot police and snipers were specifically targeting medics. They were wounded by snipers, they were beaten, abducted or even arrested for performing their professional responsibilities. They put the Hippocratic Oath into effect and deserve our support and admiration.
While their work can now gradually be taken over by regular medical services, both in Ukraine and abroad, the main challenge is now to take care of those traumatized by the events. These include activists who fought at the front line and who saw their buddies being wounded or killed; these include the relatives of those killed; these also include the volunteers of the Maidan hospital, who saw the wounded and killed being brought in by the dozen, and who had to perform operations in hotel lobbies and churches and treat the wounded right at the battle zone.
We wish to help those dealing with trauma and grief by providing specialized trauma care, offered by experts from the region who know the circumstances and environment, and who speak the language of those affected. We work closely with centers and individual specialists in the region, who have a long-lasting experience in similar situations. We want to train Ukrainian personnel, who can follow up and develop their own expertise. And we want to support the medical personnel in putting their lives back on track, and make sure they will manage to give the traumatic events a place in their lives.
We have a 25-year experience in developing mental health care in Ukraine, working closely with Ukrainian partners and friends who know exactly what is needed and how it can be done. We call upon you to help us in realizing our plans and doing what must be done. All donations, big and small, are most welcome.
People who want to make donations can do so by transferring their donation to the bank account of the Federation Global Initiative on Psychiatry. We will make sure all your donations find their way to the right destination. Our partner on the ground is, among others, the Ukrainian Psychiatric Association, with whom we have worked for more than 20 years.