Count Academy Award-winning director Steven Spielberg and wife Kate Capshaw among those who have made seven-figure donations to help refugees fleeing Ukraine.
The couple donated $1 million through their Hearthland Foundation. It’s the non-profit Spielberg and Capshaw started in 2020.
Earlier Thursday, Jack Dorsey, the former CEO of Twitter, donated $7 million to help Ukrainians fight off Russia.
Steven Spielberg, Kate Capshaw Will Send Donations to Groups in Poland
Spielberg and Capshaw will divide their donations between five organizations: Polish Red Cross, Polish Humanitarian Action, World Central Kitchen, Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society and Urgent Action Fund.
The United Nations estimates that about 3 million people have departed Ukraine since the Russian invasion started Feb. 24. Plus, the Red Cross estimated that 18 million people, or about one-third of the Ukrainian population, will need humanitarian assistance.
About 1.8 million refugees have ended up in Poland. For context, the number is equivalent to the population of Warsaw, Poland’s largest city and the capital.
Poland, which is to the west, is an obvious destination for fleeing Ukraine. The Polish Red Cross says it has distributed 90,000 food and hygiene packages. They’ve delivered 400 tons of food, blankets, household items and medical supplies.
World Central Kitchen, co-founded by chef Jose Andres, is on the ground in Poland, serving hot meals to people displaced by the invasion.
WCK also is serving food to people in 12 cities across Ukraine. The non-profit set up the day after the invasion started.
“Why we are so quick? Because we don’t plan,” Andres told NPR. “We don’t meet. We come, and we begin cooking.”
Several Celebrities Are Writing Big Checks to Help Ukraine
Acting super couple Ashton Kutcher and Mila Kunis are trying to raise $30 million for Ukraine. It’s personal for Kunis. She was born in Ukraine.
“I was born in Chernivtsi, Ukraine in 1983,” Kunis said. “I came to America in 1991. (And) I have always considered myself American, a proud American, I love everything that this country has done for myself and my family. But today, I have never been more proud to be a Ukrainian.”
So far, the couple have raised $20 million. They will match up to $3 million with their own money.
Another Hollywood couple have pledged a chunk of money. Ryan Reynolds and Blake Lively will match any funds they raise with $1 million of their own money. Reynolds tweeted about their efforts Feb. 26.
Reynolds wrote on Twitter: “In 48 hours, countless Ukrainians were forced to flee their homes to neighboring countries. They need protection. When you donate, we’ll match it up to $1,000,000, creating double the support.”
Bethenny Frankel, a former Real Housewives of New York City star, has raised more than $6 million with her BStrong Foundation. The group is in Poland, helping refugees from Ukraine.