Mila Kunis and Ashton Kutcher launch fundraiser in Ukraine
‘That ’70s Show’ stars Mila Kunis and husband Ashton Kutcher have launched a $30 million GoFundMe fundraiser to support ‘proud and brave’ Ukrainians on home soil in the beleaguered country, with plans to match the donations up to $3 million.
“Proud Ukrainian” Kunis – who was born in Chernivtsi, Ukraine, and whose family immigrated to the United States in 1991 – lamented Russia’s “unjust attack” on the European nation and “humanity in his outfit “. She said their philanthropic work is meant to have “an immediate impact on refugees and humanitarian relief efforts”.
“Our family is launching this fund to help provide immediate support and we will donate up to $3 million,” the ‘Bad Moms’ and ‘Family Guy’ star said on the fundraising page, echoing the sentiment from a YouTube video in which she appeared alongside Kutcher.
“As we witness the bravery of Ukrainians, we also bear witness to the unimaginable burden of those who have chosen safety,” she added. “Countless people left behind everything they knew and loved to seek refuge. With nothing but what they could carry, these Ukrainian refugees need housing and supplies right away.
Players’ Fundraising Stand With Ukraine, launched Thursday afternoon, had already received more than 9,500 donations and raised nearly $3.4 million by early Friday morning. The celebrity couple have teamed up with global logistics experts Flexport.org to organize shipments of relief supplies to refugee sites in neighboring countries of Ukraine, Poland, Romania, Hungary, Slovakia and Moldova. They also tapped vacation rental company Airbnb, in which Kutcher was an early investor, to provide free short-term housing for Ukrainian refugees.
In a Thursday tweet kicking off the campaign, Kutcher added, “To stand with Ukraine is to stand with Ukrainians.”
A number of celebrities have shown their support for the Ukrainian people and President Volodymyr Zelensky as they fight Russian President Vladimir Putin’s invasion of the former Soviet nation. Oscar-winning actor and humanitarian Sean Penn, who recently visited Ukraine to work on a documentary film, encourages the United States to come to the rescue of the beleaguered country. At the SAG Awards on Sunday, winners such as Michael Keaton, Jean Smart and Brian Cox spoke out against the crisis. And on Wednesday, Comedy Central’s “South Park” poked fun at Putin and his alleged motives for the assault.
Other professional arts and cultural organizations have shown solidarity with Ukraine by cutting ties with artists who support Putin. Russian conductor Valery Gergiev was sacked this week as conductor of the Munich Philharmonic Orchestra and his Gergiev Festival was canceled by the Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra. He has also been dropped by the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra, the Edinburgh Festival in Scotland and the Teatro alla Scala in Milan.
Meanwhile, opera singer Anna Netrebko has pulled out of future engagements at the Metropolitan Opera rather than repudiate her support for Putin, according to The Associated Press.