Charities have thanked people for donating to the Disasters Emergency Committee appeal for Ukraine after it raised more than £6 million in Scotland in under 24 hours.
The funds will help member charities urgently respond to the crisis and provide people caught up in the conflict with shelter, food, water and medical support.
Since the appeal launched on Thursday, more than £6 million has been raised in Scotland as people rushed to donate, including £2 million from the Scottish Government.
Across the UK the appeal has raised more than £55 million, including £20 million donated by the UK Government as part of its UK Aid Match scheme.
In such difficult times, the generosity of people across Scotland is remarkable and inspiring.— DEC in Scotland (@DECScotland) March 4, 2022
Our #Ukraine appeal has raised more than £6 million here in just 24 hours, the UK total is past £55 million!!
Thank you so much 👏
You can donate here 👉 https://t.co/e80NSw8nw0 pic.twitter.com/GsijppwSVG
Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC) charities and their local partners in Ukraine and the neighbouring countries will now use the funds to scale up their response to meet the immediate needs of people fleeing the violence.
Charities have urged people to keep donating as help is likely to be needed for months and years to come.
Marie Hayes of the British Red Cross, who is chairwoman of the DEC Ukraine Appeal in Scotland, said: “We are hugely grateful to everyone across Scotland who has so rapidly and generously supported the appeal.
“We also thank the Scottish and UK Government and in particular the lead taken by all major political parties at Holyrood to encourage the public to donate.
“Giving through the DEC is the most effective way to get the right assistance to the right people.
“While wanting to collect clothes and other items for people in need is laudable, the things people give today may not be what people need tomorrow and aid workers say they can’t use much of what is arriving. Donating through the DEC is the most helpful way people can assist.
“While we have raised an astonishing amount in the first day of the appeal, we urge people to continue donating as the need is great and the response needed is likely to run into months and years. Please help now.”
The DEC said £10 provides essential hygiene supplies for one person for one month, £20 provides emergency food for one for a month, and £50 provides blankets for 10 people.
Anyone who wants to donate can do so online at dec.org.uk, by phoning 0370 60 60 900, or by texting SUPPORT to 70150 to donate £10. Texts cost £10 and the whole £10 goes to the DEC Ukraine Appeal.
Meanwhile, ventilators, bandages and syringe pumps are being sent to Ukraine as part of the second shipment of medical supplies and equipment donated by NHS Scotland.
More than 130,000 items urgently requested by the Ukrainian Government will be flown from Stansted Airport to Poland on Sunday for onward transport to Ukraine.
The latest medical aid – valued at about £1.2 million – follows an initial shipment earlier this week and is in addition to £4 million of humanitarian assistance for Ukraine announced by the Scottish Government on Monday, of which the United Nations children’s organisation Unicef is to receive £1 million.
Together with other United Nations agencies, Unicef is establishing a series of child-friendly refuges along key travel corridors in countries bordering Ukraine to provide critical support to children and families fleeing the Russian invasion.
Scotland’s Europe minister Neil Gray said: “We have watched in horror and anger as Russia’s illegal war of aggression has led to deplorable loss of lives, livelihoods and of homes.
“Scotland is not standing by as our fellow Europeans suffer. This latest substantial consignment of medical supplies helps address urgent needs identified by the Ukrainian Government as it continues to resist the invasion and protect its citizens.
“Meanwhile, our £4 million of humanitarian aid will assist efforts to support those – particularly children – who have been forced from their homes to seek safety.
“We will continue looking at all options to further support the people of Ukraine.”