Portlanders Are Showing Their Support for Ukraine and Raising Money

The Morrison Bridge will be illuminated with the colors of the Ukrainian flag this week, and local vendors are donating proceeds to nonprofits.

Whether stripping store shelves of Russian vodka or rallying in Pioneer Courthouse Square, Portlanders are finding ways to demonstrate their support for Ukraine as the Russian invasion continues.

Drivers may have noticed one very public expression of solidarity in the form of the Morrison Bridge lit up in shades of blue and yellow—the colors of the Ukrainian flag. The new river pier illumination began Feb. 28 and will continue through March 6.

“This display is a small but visible way that Multnomah County can show our support for the people of Ukraine, as well as our Ukrainian friends and neighbors in the community. Our hearts are with them,” Multnomah County Chair Deborah Kafoury, who made the request, stated in a press release. “We stand in solidarity with all who are hoping or working to see peace restored in Ukraine.”

Then there’s Kachka, chef Bonnie Morales’ exceptional tribute to her Belarusian roots. The Buckman neighborhood restaurant is donating 100% of its proceeds from sales of the Chervona wine cocktail to the Ukrainian Red Cross Society.

“We were devastated to learn of the senseless attack on Ukraine this morning,” Kachka shared Feb. 25 on its social media platforms. “Our hearts break for the loving, caring people of Ukraine that do not deserve this terror. Please help in any way you can.”

In celebrating the food and culture of the regions of the former Soviet Union, Ukrainian food has been an integral part of Kachka’s menu over the years. Morales and her staff have also traveled to the country to further explore cuisine.

Kachka plans to expand the fundraiser to include a food component and it will run for the foreseeable future. Also, you will no longer find a single vodka made in Russia available to order. The restaurant has removed its entire stock.

Gifford’s Flowers is also working to send medical aid to Ukraine. The longtime downtown Portland florist is donating all of the profits from sunflower sales—the country’s national flower—through March 31. Those funds will go to Direct Relief, a humanitarian organization that’s active in more than 80 countries, with a mission to improve the health and lives of people affected by poverty or emergencies.