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Vodka 4 Peace donating profits to Ukrainian relief effort

A new charity vodka to support those affected by the war in Ukraine is launching in the UK. 

Vodka 4 Peace - previously known as Vodka Zelensky, named after the country's current president, Volodymyr Zelensky - was founded by a team of refugees and entrepreneurs and aims to provide immediate assistance to Ukrainian civilians as they continue to face attacks from Russian forces.

The conflict, which began in February, has so far forced hundreds of thousands of Ukrainians to flee their homes, and many have been left without basic necessities such as food, electricity and running water. Countries around the world - including NATO member states - have pledged humanitarian aid for civilians, support for refugees, and assistance for the Ukrainian military.

The Vodka 4 Peace project will donate 100 per cent of its profits, and £5 per bottle sold, to carefully chosen NGO (non-governmental organisations) in Ukraine.

Leading the project are fashion designer Anistasiia Rosinina, who fled the Ukrainian capital Kyiv in March, and Swiss entrepreneur Dr Tobias Reichmuth. Under their direction, Vodka 4 Peace went from concept to bottling in just eight days.

The bottle is wrapped in the colours of the Ukrainian flag, blue and yellow, with a silhouette of its namesake politician on the label. The European wheat-based vodka is already being sold in Germany and Switzerland, alongside the UK, with more markets to follow soon. The team behind the project hopes that up to one million bottles could be sold in 2022.

Dr Reichmuth said: "Through Anastasiia, with whom I have been friends for six years, the war came to my mobile phone almost live. As an entrepreneur, I asked myself how to get out of this powerless feeling and take action."

Ms Rosinina said: "We are committed to donating 100 per cent of realised profits to Ukraine – until at least 2026. As help is urgently needed now, a minimum of £5 per bottle sold will be immediately donated to humanitarian aid organisations in Ukraine."

She added that she is working with Ambassador Walter Fust, former head of the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation, to ensure the responsible allocation of the donations collected through Vodka 4 Peace.

Another member of the founding team, Georgia von Gleichen, whose mother is a refugee from former Czechoslovakia, said: “We built the company in only eight days and could already donate close to £30,000 to a children's hospital in Kyiv and a humanitarian organisation helping low-income Ukrainians with children."

13 April 2022 - Bethany Whymark