None of us can imagine what it is like to be forced to leave our country unless we are (or have been) refugees ourselves. We have likely all seen the bravery of both those who have made the incredibly difficult decision to stay behind and those who have taken the equally difficult decision to leave their homes in the Ukraine over the last few weeks.

Music and the arts can be a lifeline and an anchor in these situations; providing moments of respite, comfort and hope in desperately challenging times and a hopeful reinforcement of the identity of the people who are having that identity threatened in the most of violent of ways. The arts can also be a powerful reminder of our humanity, which is so easily lost when the most basic needs of these people have been brutally taken from them.

There are many instances of music offering hope and a show of resilience and strength from the Ukrainian people themselves, some examples of which can be found here:

Opera Singers in Lviv give a rousing rendition of the Ukrainian National Anthem

More examples of music lifting spirits in the Ukraine:

And here are a few links to musical tributes to the Ukrainian people:

Gimnazija Kranj Symphony Orchestra and Choir's dedication to the brave Ukrainian people

Festivals for Compassion has commissioned Ukrainian composer, Maxim Shalygin, to create Drop After Drop in 2022

Whilst we do not advocate for any specific appeals for your support, we are keen to offer options, if you would like to contribute to the efforts to support the Ukrainian people at this time. Please visit the following site first:

The UK Government has also offered advice if you want to offer support:

And here are a few additional ways you can support those who have fled the Ukraine:

Unicef Appeal for Ukrainian Children

DEC Appeal

British Red Cross Appeal

We are also willing to recognise our own limitations in writing about the Ukraine in this way in 2022. We cannot, in good conscience, write about Eastern Europe without mentioning the continuing conflict and displacement of people from Syria - another example of conflict that has had a profound and massive impact on a vast number of civilians (now refugees). We didn’t write about Syria in the same way 10 years ago and we’d like to acknowledge and try to rectify that by including the following links. If you would like to learn more or offer your support, please visit:

Save The Children’s Syria Crisis Appeal

Unicef campaign for Syria