By Nicola Askman,
DataIQ 100 2022 | Award Winning Data Governance Training | Consultant | Coaching | Data Governance Expert | D.A.T.A Founding Committee
Like people and industries across the world people in data and tech are doing everything they can to help the people of Ukraine as they face some of the worst of humanity.
D.A.T.A was born out of a feeling of helplessness, and we have a very clear mission. We are mobilising the data, analytics, and technology communities to come together and raise money to help Ukrainian citizens.
We truly believe that together we can achieve more and have set ourselves the ambitious target of buying 10,000 medical kits, worth $1million in just six weeks.
So, how did this all come together? Well, we all watched on in horror as the most unthinkable unfolded in front of our eyes. On the 22nd of February 2022, when Russia invaded Ukraine, I felt shockedand powerless. Since that day I have found it difficult to watch the news as it only increased my feelings of helplessness.
I didn’t know what I could do to help – but I knew that I wanted to. But what could I do by myself? So, despite feeling awful, I continued living my life, as many of us have, checking the news, shaking my head in disbelief as to what was unfolding.
Then, three weeks later, on the 17th of March to be exact, I got a message from Rob Howes. He too had been feeling the same feelings of helplessness and had come up with a plan to take action – not just on his own but with the collective data industry.
He told me how he wanted to harness the wonderful community of Data and Tech people to collectively act and do something meaningful to help to people of Ukraine and then asked if I wanted to be part of it.
I didn’t hesitate, I didn’t have to think twice – finally this was something I could do to help, and we decided to get started straight away. We quickly put plans in motion and rearranged our schedules to have a call the very next day and the following week we had the first meeting of the founding committee…
D.A.T.A (Data and Tech Aid) was born, and I am honoured to be included in this group of inspiring people.
Roisin McCarthy (a fellow Founding Committee member) described it as finding your tribe and I think she is right. It is amazing how a small group of people can get together and make things happen, when individually it would have been beyond us. Instead of feeling helpless and despairing, I am now energised and motivated, knowing that I am now taking actions that will help the people of Ukraine.
We all wanted to take action quickly, but it soon became clear that if we want to make a significant impact then we had to plan very carefully. We have some exciting things up our sleeves that we will be sharing in the coming weeks, but right now the most important thing we have to focus on is saving lives in Ukraine.
After painstaking research, trying to decide where would be best to direct any funds we were able to raise, we finally settled on The Kyiv School of Economics Charitable Foundation (KSE CF). KSE was established in 2007 as a subsidiary of its non-profit corporation in the United States.
Working directly with the Government of Ukraine, other funds, and multiple volunteer organizations, KSE has established itself as one of the largest humanitarian aid foundations providing vital medicines and food to those in Ukraine.
As I said, our initial efforts are focussed on raising enough money to buy 10,000 medical kits. It has become evident that the main danger for civilians at war in Ukraine is death from blood loss caused by shrapnel wounds after the shelling. It is shocking that many people are dying from blood loss before they can get medical assistance. We must change that. Thousands of lives could be saved if bleeding is stopped quickly.
The Ministry of Health of Ukraine has confirmed to KSE the need for up to 300,000 kits so now our priority at D.A.T.A is supplying those in need with medical kits specifically to stop blood loss.
The cost of one delivered medical kit is $100 and the cost includes the price of the first aid kit from the supplier, transportation costs to Ukraine, unexpected expenses including things like customs and possible price fluctuations. As D.A.T.A we are raising money to make a difference by coming together as the strong community we are – not to just be seen to be doing good, but actually do good! At this point in time, aid is needed now.
Doing any of the standard fundraising type activities takes time, money and effort and we have none of those things – we are not a charity ourselves – we all have day jobs and are juggling busy lives but with this desire to do good and we are absolutely sure the rest of the data, tech and analytics community feel as strongly and passionately about this as we do.
So, if you too have been feeling helpless about the situation in Ukraine and want to do something to help, please find out more about D.A.T.A on our website.
There you will be able to donate to help save lives with the medical kits and that would be wonderful. You can also keep a real-time track of how many medical kits we have been able to donate so far.
If you are unable to make a monetary donation, there are still some things you can do to help support D.A.T.A. Perhaps you have some time that you can offer to help with the many tasks involved in running D.A.T.A.
Even just following us on social media and sharing our messages to a wider audience on would be a huge help.
I have a vision of a world where everyone understands the value of data and uses it to make a positive impact. That may take some time to achieve, but in the meantime bringing the data and tech communities together to support the people of Ukraine is the right thing to do and I do hope that you will be able to support us in some way.