By Oleksandr Lutskevych, Founder and CEO of CEX.IO
Only a few days ago, I was closing the 2021 performance reviews and finalizing the plans for 2022. Tens of calls with colleagues around the world, board meetings in the UK. The usual things for business.
Nothing is the same today.
Today, my eyes are peeled to a few chats where people rapidly exchange messages starting with “Is everybody alive?”
It is no secret that CEX.IO operates one of its offices in Kyiv, where we hired some of the most brilliant and hard-working minds to build and grow our products. These people have always been an important part of our global team. They are smart, deep, and humble.
A few days ago, these people had to make the toughest decisions in their lives.
Some of them left home and all their belongings without knowing when they would come back or where they were going to sleep. They drove across the country with their families, children and parents, cats and dogs, in hopes for safety. They had to wait for hours in traffic with people like them trying to keep calm. They had to hear and see the rockets exploding nearby.
Some of my teammates stayed, seeking shelter in Kyiv and regions and defending their homes and their streets. For the last few days, they hear sirens, watch airstrikes out of their windows, and feel the ground shaking from the explosions. A mat on the floor and internet is now their livelihood.
Families were split apart. When will they hug each other again? When all of this ends. When will all of this end? We do not know.
These are the people I respect, love, and care for. I care for Ukraine, because it gave me my childhood, my education, my memories, and my team. So, I stand with Ukraine today.
While the rest of the CEX.IO global team in the US, UK, Cyprus, Latvia, and Gibraltar rose up to the occasion and worked late nights and the weekend, together we are taking steps to help people affected by the war.
What are we doing now:
To those team members who are now in various parts of Ukraine, we will give our utmost focus and resources to help you get to and stay in safety.
For those who were able to leave Ukraine, we will fund a safe settlement for you and your families.
For Ukraine at large, we have started a number of initiatives to drive humanitarian relief. These initiatives will be in various forms. Some of them already effective or in progress:
- Effective: Free withdrawals for all fiat methods for the Ukraine residents;
- Effective: Driving donations to Red Cross (will be adding other reputable charity organizations going forward);
- Effective: We’ll donate our validator commissions we earn from the decentralized staking nodes: KAVA and ZIL – effective. Polkadot, Kusama – in progress. The donations will go to the people affected by war.
- Effective: We will enable interest-free (0%) loans to the Ukrainian residents in our Loans product.
We will be adding more to the list as every bit of an effort counts.
Part of my job, as a CEO, is to build and maintain the team and give it what it needs to succeed. Right now, for some of my colleagues, this means basic safety and a hope that things will be back to normal, one day.
There is a meme circulating around the chats with Ukrainian people managing the war reality. It says “Invaders need to get out by Monday, because on Monday, we need to go to work.” This speaks to the spirit of the people in Ukraine – unbreakable. And when these heroes find in themselves levity and kindness even in the worst situations, I know that we will get through this together.