“The greatness of humanity is not in being human, but in being humane.”Mahatma Gandhi
On February 24, 2022, Russia launched a full-scale invasion of Ukraine as a new phase of the ongoing Russo-Ukrainian war that started in 2014. GMS has taken a stance from the early days of the war — we stand with Ukraine. Our team, divided by borders but united by shared values, joined our company’s homeland liberation efforts in different ways. Many decided to share their stories.
Welcome to the second part of our special series on GMS employees helping defend Ukraine’s freedom.
Product Marketing Division
Before joining GMS, I had limited contact with Ukrainian people. Many colleagues from my department, with whom I started building friendships, are based in Ukraine. When the invasion started, I was shocked. No healthy-minded person could imagine that war in the heart of Europe was possible in the 21st century. The Russian invasion of Ukraine became an attack on the whole of Europe. I realised witnessing this cruelty without doing anything was not an option.
Buying some medication was the first thing that I did. But I didn’t know where and how to send them over. At that time, I was in Nuremberg, so I started surfing the internet to find volunteer groups. I found a group of local Ukrainian families. The volunteers gave me lists of prescriptions, and I started searching for the necessary medication. I will never forget the faces of men packing the aid into their cars, leaving for Ukraine to fight for their homeland. Later, my neighbour, who was involved in preparing accommodation for refugees, also joined the “medication initiative,” and we came up with an idea to collect donations to buy more medication — numerous people wanted to help.
I have a strong desire to visit Ukraine one day. It may be a business trip or a private one. In any case, I want finally to see the place where such brave people are born.
International Technical Support Unit
I have been working at Global Message Services AG for several years. You know, many people say the companies they build their career at become their second home. Despite sounding trivial, these words became true for me. Working as an International Technical Support Engineer, I have met many beautiful people here — and from Ukraine too. So, when this invasion started, I couldn’t just look away.
I am Turkish, living in Switzerland, and I am proud of all the humanity this country’s people have shown. Kindness knows no borders. Switzerland has opened its doors to people from Ukraine; you could see the solidarity in Zurich streets, as blue and yellow flags have been flown instead of Canton banners in the city for weeks.
You can easily find many local initiatives for supporting Ukraine. I’m registered with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees website, and they let me know whenever there is a need for volunteers. Donating and raising awareness about ways to help Ukraine have become a part of my daily routine.
I believe we ought to support people fighting for their homeland — it is about being on the right side of history. One day, I want to go to Kyiv and celebrate the victory with the Ukrainian people who bravely fought for their country.
Global Enterprise Department
A considerable portion of our team lives in Ukraine. When someone is trying to harm your colleagues, you cannot just close your eyes and pretend that nothing is happening. I had to act — to bring support in whatever way I could.
Switzerland became one of the countries to host Ukrainian asylum seekers. I realised that contributing to this process was the most effective way to help at that moment. I have offered accommodation to people, connected Ukrainians with locals who can support them, and encouraged friends and family to make donations. My daughter and her friends have made and sold ice cream and cakes on the streets of our city, with all proceeds going to Ukraine. Making sure my children are aware of what is going on and encouraging them to become involved in any way they can is very important for me. My godson also baked cookies and sold them in his local park, with all proceeds going to Ukraine.
When the war ends with the victory of Ukraine (I have no doubts about that), I will visit Kyiv and hug all my colleagues once again.
HR & Administration Division
I work as an HR Manager in GMS’ Swiss office, and soon I’ll commemorate my fifth anniversary at the company. Global Message Services is a lovely place to build a career: besides all the ways to develop my professional skills, I also found an opportunity to communicate with people from all over the world.
I’m a family-oriented person. Every kid has the right to a happy childhood — Ukrainian children are no exception. When Russia launched this brutal invasion, many Ukrainian families chose Switzerland to become their safe haven. So, without any further ado, my family offered a room for a mum and her baby to live in — that was the least we could do. I am blessed in life so far. I felt like it was time to share this blessing and step out of our comfort zone. I also wanted my children to see that even the smallest act of kindness can make a difference.
I do want to visit Ukraine in the future when it’s safe again and show my kids this unique part of Europe.
Making a difference is not always about direct involvement; you may take a stance by financially supporting Ukraine. GMS has donated to the Ukrainian war effort; if you would like to assist Ukrainians’ fight for their freedom, please consider checking out the following links:
Also, read the first part of our series of articles Chronicles of the Russo-Ukrainian War: Our Volunteers.