It’s been over 12 months since the war in Ukraine broke out, and now is a more important time than ever to support those still based in the country.
In the final piece of a five-piece roundtable series, organised in collaboration with Bet on Good Foundation, we spoke with leading industry figures about the ways the wider igaming industry can support charitable initiatives based in Ukraine.
SBC: What more can the wider industry do to support charitable causes and humanitarian efforts in Ukraine?
Vlad Slyusarenko, CEO of Bet on Good Foundation: You know, the igaming industry is a huge and open community that can influence a lot of things, really. An incredible number of people with big and sympathetic hearts are involved in this area, who, not only in word but also in deed, show their involvement and concern for the problems of Ukraine.
From the very beginning of the war, we have been surprised by how much the industry helps and supports Ukrainians. And we Ukrainians are warmed by the idea that we are not alone with the enemy and that we have friends everywhere, including the gambling industry.
Any industry representative can and is taking steps to bring victory closer to Ukraine – the same post with an appeal to support Ukraine on LinkedIn, a small donation to charitable foundations, a repost of important news, and so on. All this is very important and gives its result. Someone helped by sending 10 euros, someone by sending 100,000 euros. It is important that this support and assistance does not end. Well, our foundation is open to any initiatives and proposals!
The war is not over yet, and many people still need help… And your team is doing an important thing – you remind them of how important it is to help and support Ukraine. Thank you!
Ruslan Kravchuk, HR Director, Playson: First and foremost, don’t be afraid to talk about it publicly and spread awareness no matter what. We have chosen a path to diversify our help which includes working with big charity organisations for humanitarian aid and liaising with well-known organisations, who help with armour and devices which are delivered to the frontline.
Local volunteers are also needed as their support makes a big impact immediately. We also encourage supporting the Ukrainian people and collaborating with authorities to understand the current needs and help with its purchase and transportation from the EU to Ukraine. All these things can make such a huge difference.
Daniel Heywood, CEO of NuxGame: First and foremost, the industry should stop any cooperation with companies or people that pay taxes in Russia. We’d encourage those looking to get involved to donate to the Ukrainian Army and trusted charities.
For those looking to play a more active role, volunteering for organisations that provide assistance to Ukraine is a great endeavour, as is participating in events and campaigns that raise funds for Ukraine.
We also encourage speaking up against the war when the situation arises, whether that be with colleagues or your peers, it’s important to have such conversations to spread the message. Contacting elected representatives is a great way to show support and encourage spending on military assistance. There is strength in numbers so the more people that do so puts further pressure on politicians to act.
Ivan Kravchuk, CEO of Evoplay: There are several authoritative funds in Ukraine that help both the country and our people, and the best way to get involved is to donate to them. It’s of great importance to support the country during these hard times, and even a small contribution provides substantial aid. Every donation draws Ukraine nearer to victory, and we encourage continued efforts with the war still ongoing.
From our side, we will continue operating as a leading iGaming provider and supplying our partners with top-notch gaming products. Through bolstering the local economy, in turn, it allows us to help Ukraine in as many ways and as much as we can. We thank everyone for their support, and in return, as I’ve said – we’ll never let the industry down.
Igor Terebinov, Deputy CEO at PokerMatch: In my opinion, the industry should continue to do two things:
- Actively talk about Ukraine in the media.
- Organise more charity events to help good win over evil.
The longer the war goes on in Ukraine, the more narratives about fatigue are spreading. However, the world needs to understand that this war concerns everyone who is against military aggression and for democracy in the civilized world. Now, more than ever, we all need to unite and support each other. And the industry can help by keeping the world aware of what is happening in Ukraine and not letting it be forgotten.
Evgen Belousov, GR8 Tech CEO: The war is on, so it is necessary to speak about it and as loudly as possible. The experience of many conferences has confirmed that it is important to talk about the problem out loud, draw the public’s attention to it, and involve as many personalities and companies as possible in cooperation. The aid should be systematic and loud, because supporting Ukraine fighting for its and ultimately the world’s freedom is only right.
Any kind of donations to the trusted Ukrainian fundraising platforms, such as United 24, is welcome as well.
Gal Ehrlich, CEO of BETER: There are several things we can do on a personal and business level. The first thing is the easiest but the most impactful. We must keep talking about the war and what is happening in Ukraine, so thank you for providing this opportunity for me to do so. Second, all companies that have operations, offices and employees in the country should stand firm and do all they can to ensure that it’s business as usual.
Finally, I think the wider industry should look to launch additional funding campaigns like we had last year when the war first started. There are several trustworthy charities and foundations that really need our support. They all cover different things, so there is absolutely a charity for everyone to get behind.