When the U.S. government offered to evacuate Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy after Russia invaded his country, he reportedly replied, "I need ammunition, not a ride."
Vista Outdoor, the Anoka-based supplier of ammunition to Ukraine's military since 2015, is donating 1 million rounds of small-caliber ammunition to the country's armed forces.
Vista's ammunition companies Federal and Remington also are selling T-shirts on their websites to raise money for refugees.
"The war in Ukraine has displaced millions of citizens and exposed average people to the horrors of war," Jason Vanderbrink, president of Remington, CCI, Speer and Federal Ammunition, said in a news release. "We have long supported Ukrainian armed forces, and we will continue to do so in this global cause to unite for democracy."
Vista's ammunition brands have long served law enforcement agencies and militaries around the world, including NATO countries.
The ammunition donation to Ukraine is significant and can be delivered in a timely manner, a Federal Ammunition spokesman said.
He said the company, at the same time, will continue to fill a persistent ammunition shortage brought on by the influx of new shooters over the past two years as outdoor recreation gained new enthusiasts during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Proceeds from the T-shirt sales — with Remington's design playing off Zelenskyy's quote — will be donated to the Ukraine Crisis Relief Fund through GlobalGiving, a nonprofit international aid organization.
"Supporting the relief effort is a crucial element of the global response, and we are proud to do our part," Vanderbrink said.
T-shirts will be available to purchase in a week and those interested in supporting the cause can sign up for an alert when they are available at websites for Federal and Remington. https://www.federalpremium.com/merchandise/apparel/short-sleeve-shirts/1001691.html
In Vista's third quarter, the company changed its reporting units so it could produce a cleaner view of how much the ammunition brands are earning. Vista Outdoor as a whole had revenue of $2.2 billion for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2021. About 56% of the total was from ammunition sales.
UnitedHealth Group donating $1 million
The United Health Foundation announced the following donations to support relief efforts in Ukraine:
- $500,000 to Save the Children, the U.S. affiliate of Save the Children International, to provide Ukrainian children and families with immediate aid such as food, water, hygiene kits and psychosocial support.
- $500,0000 to Direct Relief, a long-standing United Health Foundation partner on disaster response, to provide emergency medical supplies including critical care medicines, oxygen concentrators and antibiotics to the Ukrainian Ministry of Health.