Publishers, retailers and trade fairs step up to help as free artwork resource is launched
The greeting card industry’s support for Ukraine is deepening as more publishers, retailers and trade fairs do what they can to help the country being torn apart by the Russian invasion.
Cath Tate Cards is donating 10% of its overall March profits to Oxfam’s Ukraine appeal plus all profits from the mixed greeting card pack on its website, while at Holy Mackerel half the value of the weekend’s website sales will be given to the Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC) Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal.
Trevor Jones, chairman of industrywide charity The Light Fund, has announced that it has sent £5,000 to the DEC appeal, with the amount being doubled as the Government is match-funding all donations to this charity, and The Giftware Association has also donated £5,000 to the same appeal, alongside association partners the British Allied Trades Federation.
At Rocket68 and Emotional Rescue they’ve brought their art skills to the fore with supportive designs in the Ukrainian colours of yellow and blue, where donations from sales will be made to relevant charities.
Over at Go La La!, owner Laura Kavanagh normally has very naughty wrappings on her soap bars that complement the company’s card ranges but she’s put them in plain yellow and blue packaging to donate boxes of 70 bars to a local West Country aid campaign, along with shop-bought supplies of hand sanitiser and sanitary products.
“It’s such a contrast to our usual dispatch,” Laura said, “and full of sobering thoughts on the individuals it will reach, what the future holds for them and their family members. There are lots of groups rallying donations across the UK so if you’d like to donate items, see what’s going on in your local community. Toiletries, nappies, baby formula etc are all needed.”
IG Design Group has a temporary logo showing the company’s support, and is raising money via bake sales, raffles, and donations for the DEC Ukraine Appeal while Michael Apter, owner of Edinburgh retailer Paper Tiger, has also changed its logo and is donating 20% of profits from all online sales from Friday to Sunday, 11-13 March, to the same charity.
At Wrendale Designs they have been assisting grain equipment and storage specialist McArthur Agriculture which is sending pallets of aid to help Ukrainian refugees and their hosts in the border region around Poland.
German trade fair organiser Messe Frankfurt, which runs Paperworld, has taken a two-pronged approach, suspending events of its subsidiary Messe Frankfurt RUS until further notice, as well as banning all exhibitors from Russia and Belarus to its exhibitions.
The company announced: “Messe Frankfurt is looking with great concern at the tragic developments in Ukraine these days. Messe Frankfurt stands for international communication and trade platforms where people of all nations come together. Our corporate principles include peaceful coexistence and trade relations of the same kind. This is a prerequisite for a functioning international economy and for a functioning international coexistence as a whole.
“Messe Frankfurt supports all sanction measures taken by the (German) Federal Government. Against this backdrop, the Messe Frankfurt Board of Management decided to suspend events of its subsidiary Messe Frankfurt RUS until further notice.
“Messe Frankfurt has decided not to admit Russian exhibitors as well as exhibitors from Belarus to its trade fairs until further notice. This applies to all countries of the Messe Frankfurt Group that have joined the sanction measures. Furthermore, Messe Frankfurt is also suspending all visitor marketing activities in Russia and Belarus until further notice.”
Designers, illustrators and photographers across the world are also helping by creating and sharing artwork on a new open platform Creatives For Ukraine, which serves both as an expression of solidarity and an open source for visual images for the media or anyone in the world to illustrate the situation in Ukraine – illustrations can be downloaded for free here.
The project was launched by volunteer creatives from Lithuania, pulling various resources and talents together motivated to create a platform that can help visualise the gravity of the present-day events and the impact they have around the world.
“We are using our voice and written word while engaging our contacts to support peace,” said Kristina Skindelytė-Galdkovienė, co-founder of Blue Oceans PR agency, “we want the whole world to see and share art and images that convey frustration, hurt, helplessness, and anger that creatives capture so adequately. The interest has been staggering, with over 100 works submitted daily since the launch of the platform.”