With everything happening in Ukraine, people may be concerned about what they can do to help. We at The Olympian have brainstormed some ideas for how people can support those in Ukraine.
It’s important to be informed when major world events are happening. Most, if not all, teens have some form of social media, so it is important that they know which sources are trustworthy. People can easily post inaccurate information about issues like war, so critical thinking and source checking are imperative when consuming such topics on social media. Reposting infographics is a simple way to spread information, but users should make sure they are correct before posting them. Misinformation spreads so quickly, so it is important that students know what they are reading so they do not spread it further.
Students can also help by showing support to friends who may be affected by the war. There are many organizations set up to collect donations in order to help Ukrainian refugees, and students and their families can donate if they can afford it.
Schools should help in every way they can to create a supportive learning environment when it comes to heavy issues like the Russia-Ukraine war. Classrooms should be safe places to discuss, ask questions, and learn about the events. Any teacher who chooses to speak on these topics should be coming from an unbiased, educated perspective in order to best teach about the issue. Teachers and students should do their best to support others in the CVHS community who may be affected or know people who are affected by the events in Ukraine. CVHS staff in particular could plan an open Trojan Time or lunch event to provide assistance and education on the issue. The Wellness Center can also provide support if students want to talk about the war, especially if it is heavily affecting them.
Schools and students can only do so much though; the media and the government have to do their part too. Social media companies such as Instagram, Tiktok, and Facebook should have their own fact-checking devices to prevent the spread of misinformation. With the Covid-19 pandemic, Instagram would put a link to Covid information on any post or story that mentioned Covid in any way to ensure that people had a way to get trustworthy information. If social media companies did something like this for the Russia-Ukraine war, it could help prevent the spread of false facts. News companies and their consumers should utilize fact-checking websites to make sure that what was published is accurate. Whether people are posting on social media or posting articles, they need to make sure they are publishing accurate information. To help with the fact-checking process, consumers can report information that is inaccurate or fake. On the government’s side, we suggest sanctions against Russia and monetary aid to help Ukrainian refugees.