Courtesy: Alex Iskold
A little over a month into Russia’s assault on Ukraine, Alex Iskold is trying to reckon with the reality in his homeland while lending a hand the best way he knows how.
Iskold, who immigrated to the U.S. from Ukraine at age 19, is a venture capitalist and managing director of 2048 Ventures in New York. He’s also a tech entrepreneur and co-founder of the 1K Project, a nonprofit that allows anyone to donate $1,000 directly to a Ukrainian family.
So far, the project has raised more than $3.5 million and helped 3,500 families. But Iskold, now 49, knows the crisis ahead for Ukraine, a country of 44 million people, is poised to deepen no matter when the fighting ends.
More than 4 million Ukrainians have fled to neighboring countries, with more than half entering Poland, as the Russian military has pounded population centers. Millions more are certain to lack basic necessities far into the future, and will need money for food, medicine, clothing and transportation.
“There’s a lot of ways you can donate, but when you donate direct relief, you know one family is better off because you helped them,” Iskold said in an interview.
For a family of three to four, $1,000 lasts only about a month, he said. With more than 70,000 families already waiting for support and more applications coming in by the hour, the project needs individual and corporate sponsors to keep contributing.
“This is a strong call to action, because companies could make a significant difference, and we’re confident we’re the right vessel for delivering the aid,” he said. “Hopefully companies can step up and help us get to more families.”
The concept behind the 1K Project is simple: An individual donates $1,000, which gets sent directly to a Ukrainian family.
Iskold launched the 1K Project for a different purpose. He and Chrysi Philalithes, a fellow entrepreneur and start-up investor, created it in 2020 to assist Ukrainian families during the Covid-19 pandemic….
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