Husband and wife licensees of Pinch cocktail and tapas bar in Fitzrovia, Central London, Yana Galiyeva and Alex Ribalicenko, who are both Ukrainian, are donating 15% of their profits to Ukrainian armed forces for the foreseeable future in a stand against Russia’s invasion.
Galiyeva said: “As we are both Ukrainian, we are directly affected by the horrific situation happening in Ukraine right now.
“Some cities are surrounded by Russian troops and suffering humanitarian crisis, having no access to water, food and medicines.”
Pinch has already raised £5,000 through a fundraising event recently held at the bar, in partnership with Dima’s Vodka, which has enabled the licensees to send some trucks over to Ukraine with humanitarian aid.
This comes during the third week of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine which began on Thursday 24 February 2022, creating the biggest refugee crisis since WWII.
Trade body UKHospitality (UKH) announced last week it would work the UK Government to offer aid and support to those affected by the crisis in Ukraine.
UKH chief executive Kate Nicholls said: “Like hundreds of millions of others around the world, we’re appalled at the humanitarian disaster unfolding in Ukraine.
“This is especially distressing to the dedicated Ukrainians who work in our sector and others from nearby countries. Our thoughts are with them all.
“As ever, though, our industry is showing compassion and rising to this latest, tragic challenge. We have been heartened by the initiatives that business owners and their employees have already taken forward.”
Galiyeva encouraged licensees to donate money and fundraise where possible, noting the generosity of customers and eagerness to help from the sector and the ease of sending donations through bank transfers.
She said: “From what I see, a lot of people want to be involved and donating a percentage of proceeds is a great way of supporting Ukrainians in need.
“Customers can donate as much as they want knowing it will all go to charity. Many people were generous with donations and not only donated with buying drinks but donated extra money that all went to British Ukrainian Aid.
“There are a number of approved organisations helping to raise funds [such as] British Ukrainian Aid, the return alive foundation, the National bank of Ukraine, British Red Cross [and] UNICEF Ukraine emergency.
“It’s very easy to donate via bank transfer or card payment.
“We want to raise awareness of the war in Ukraine and as many funds as we can to help Ukrainian people fighting for freedom.”