Donating With Intention

Ukraine’s civilians and its 2 million refugees are in urgent need of financial and humanitarian support—and corporations are stepping up.

Here are some guidelines to keep in mind to make sure your donations are effective, tactful and on brand: 

  • Align donations with your corporate values. Ask if the organization’s mission resonates with what you stand for. American Express invoked one of its company values—“Do What is Right”–in announcing its decision to suspend all operations for Russia and its pledge for $1 million in aid to Ukrainians. 
  • Be generous. Generosity on a corporate scale could save lives. Making too small of a donation, or not donating at all, could result in criticism from employees and customers. 
  • Offer corporate matching. People around the world are watching what’s unfolding in Ukraine in horror, and employees want to feel invested in how their company is responding. Over 2,000 employees and leaders at the gaming company Unity donated over $1.2 million to support Ukraine—and their CEO personally matched each employee’s donation.
  • In-kind donations matter. If your company produces basic goods or medications, donating those can magnify your impact. In addition to a $5 million donation and unlimited matching for employees, Johnson & Johnson is providing products including hygiene kits, health packets and medical supplies. 
  • Be human and be humble. Share that you’re making an impact and encourage others to join. But launching an ad campaign around your donation (especially if the campaign cost more than the donation) could be met with criticism.