£55m raised in one day following extraordinary outpouring of public support for DEC Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal

The UK has rallied round in an astonishing show of support for The Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC) Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal which has raised £55 million on its first day, with generous donations from Her Majesty the Queen, HRH The Prince of Wales, The Duke of Cambridge and many others. Money from the public is still coming in. 

Heart-rending appeals to raise funds were broadcast on the BBC by actor Adrian Lester, star of Trigger Point, Hustle and Life, and on ITV, Channel 4, Channel 5 and Sky by Kit Harington, star of Game of Thrones and Marvel film Eternals, following the evening news yesterday (Thurs). Commercial radio appeals were voiced by actor David Tennant, star of Doctor Who, Staged and Broadchurch. 

Hundreds of thousands of members of the public donated within hours to the humanitarian appeal, after DEC Chief Executive Saleh Saeed spoke at the appeal launch in London about the plight of the million people who have fled Ukraine in the last week due to intense fighting. 

The total of £55 million includes £20 million donated by the UK Government as part of its UK Aid Match scheme. This support is the largest commitment ever made to a DEC appeal through UK Aid Match and will double the impact of the public’s donations, ensuring that charities working on the ground can reach those in urgent need. 

Kit Harington, who voiced the ITV and Channel 4 appeal on Thursday evening, said: 

“Thousands of people in Ukraine have fled their homes to escape conflict – leaving behind loved ones, homes and jobs. These people urgently need shelter, food and water. With your help DEC charities can help families affected by this crisis. Please donate now at dec.org.uk.” 

DEC charities and their local partners are in Ukraine and across the border in the neighbouring countries, working to meet the immediate needs of all people fleeing with food, water, medical assistance, protection and trauma care. 

DEC Chief Executive Saleh Saeed said:  “We are extremely grateful for the huge generosity of everyone in the UK who has donated to the DEC Appeal. We are also very grateful for the generous support of the Royal Family. 

“We also thank the UK Government who have matched pound for pound the first £20 million donated by the public, as well as our broadcast partners and celebrities for having aired and joined the appeal, reaching millions of viewers and listeners. 

“Giving through the DEC is the most effective way to get the right assistance to the right people. While wanting to collect clothes and other items for people in need is laudable, the things people give today may not be what people need tomorrow and aid workers say they can’t use much of what is arriving. Donating through the DEC is the most helpful way people can assist. 

“While we have raised an astonishing amount in the first day of the appeal, we urge people to continue donating as the need is great and the response needed is likely to run into months and years. Please help now.”   


Notes to editors: 

** Spokespeople, recent photos and footage are available **

Media enquiries please call 020 7387 0200 or 07734 653616 (out of hours). 

For more information or to request interviews in advance please contact: pressofficemanager@dec.org.uk 

A collection of images and video footage of DEC member charities responding as refugees arrive into neighbouring countries is available here

UK Aid Match enquiries should be directed to the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office. Please call 0207 023 0600 (24-hour). 

About the DEC: The DEC brings together 15 leading UK aid charities at times of crisis overseas to raise funds quickly and efficiently. In these times of crisis, people in life-and-death situations need our help and our mission is to save, protect and rebuild lives through effective humanitarian response. The DEC’s 15 member charities are: Action Against Hunger, ActionAid UK, Age International, British Red Cross, CAFOD, CARE International UK, Christian Aid, Concern Worldwide UK, International Rescue Committee UK, Islamic Relief Worldwide, Oxfam GB, Plan International UK, Save the Children UK, Tearfund and World Vision UK.    

Thirteen of the DEC’s 15 members are either responding or planning to respond in Ukraine or in neighbouring countries and will receive funds from this appeal. Some may work through trusted local partners. They are Action Against Hunger, ActionAid UK, Age International, British Red Cross, CAFOD, CARE International UK, Christian Aid, Concern Worldwide UK, International Rescue Committee UK, Oxfam GB, Plan International UK, Save the Children UK and World Vision UK.    

Through UK Aid Match the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office gives the British public the opportunity to decide how the UK aid budget is spent and support people in desperate need by matching their donations pound-for-pound up to £20 million. This has increased the impact of a number of DEC appeals to help those in need around the world, including most recently to support people affected by the crisis in Afghanistan. 

How to donate:     

  • Online: dec.org.uk    
  • Phone: 0370 60 60 900 
  • SMS: To donate £10 text SUPPORT to 70150. Texts cost £10 plus the standard network charge and the whole £10 goes to the DEC Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal. You must be 16 or over and please ask the bill payer's permission. For full terms and conditions and more information go to www.dec.org.uk    
  • Or donate over the counter at any high street bank or post office or send a cheque by post to Post: DEC Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal, PO Box 999, London EC3A 3AA.