U-AID | FAQ
About U-AID Operations
Who provides medical supplies, and essential goods to be carried?
The humanitarian aid to be carried out is initially provided by the State Emergency Service of Ukraine. Multiple other humanitarian organizations, public institutions and private companies struggling to transport critical goods by land where supply routes are cut and unsafe are also expected to make use of U-AID.
How soon can the drones take flight?
Drones are reserved, and personnel are ready. We need a maximum of 2 weeks to be on-site and operational. Thankfully, host countries are expressing their support of U-AID.
How will U-AID operationalize this initiative?
Delivering aid to conflict zones remains extremely challenging due to damaged roads and life-threatening risks. Using drones to airlift and drop humanitarian aid not only minimizes the risk of losing human lives but is proven to be more cost-effective and strategic as it allows easy access to terrains that are considered inaccessible by ground personnel. The dynamic and complex context on the ground makes the drone of the highest relevance. Hence, the endorsement of U-AID by Ukrainian authorities.
U-AID is complex to set up, with many stakeholders coordinating across borders air operations in wartime. This includes diplomatic efforts, operations and logistics requirements, etc. Hence the time is taken to deliver a reliable and cost-efficient operation.
U-AID deliveries will be carried out in two phases. First, during the conflict time, the drones will take off from bases in neighbouring countries progressively, from Poland, Romania, Hungary, Moldova, and Slovakia. Once the humanitarian corridors have been established and secured, drone deliveries will be extended further in the country to achieve greater distances. Recent announcements are encouraging to trigger such in-country operations at the soonest. Under normal conditions, the drone will cover up to 300 Km, depending on its payload. Relay stations in the country are being set up to enable further reach. More drone partners are expected to join with aircraft capability up to 500 km distance. Second, during the rebuilding phase, drones will be deployed throughout the country to deliver goods and when possible help in assessing situations and rebuilding needs from the sky.
With military interventions happening dynamically across the country, the urgent need for an operation such as U-AID is increasing daily. Indeed, children remain in danger, hospitals keep receiving people in urgent need of blood and first aid, communities remain in lockdown without food or potable water. With this in mind, one drone flight can deliver milk powder to feed up to 50 babies a day, enough blood to save up to 3 lives, or enough tablets to purify up to 10,000 L of water.
How are recipients made aware of the aid coming to them?
Recipients will be notified for the coming aid via the following channels:
All flights will be announced and published on Ascent Charity’s Twitter account.
The State Emergency Service of Ukraine will coordinate locally
Ascent's dedicated app will inform all stakeholders of the flight status and cargo to be received.
How can I be assured that the drones are used for humanitarian purposes only?
Ascent Charity is a charitable organization whose mission is to provide vital humanitarian assistance and aid via air transport to vulnerable populations in times of crisis.
However, ill-intentioned parties might want to use drones for alternative cargo purposes. Against such risk, our preventive measures include but are not limited to:
Flight request and plan being approved by relevant authorities (including from host countries when applicable)
Screening and visual log of cargo content during inboxing and loading in drone phases, shared with relevant stakeholders, including diplomatic corps when necessary
Publication of cargo content on our social media channels
The operation to be handled by authorized personnel only, screened by relevant authorities.
Remote flight triggering and control from U-AID operational base only
Drop off of cargo by parachute only, without landing or stopover during approved flights
Continuous tracking of the drone during flight, shared with relevant stakeholders, including diplomatic corps when necessary
How do you mitigate the risk of drones being shot down or suffering an accident?
Operating aircraft in a crisis context means running the risk of losing assets, either being shot down or suffering other types of destructive incidents. The initial sizing of the procured fleet of drones takes such risks into account. That said, U-AID is specifically designed to minimize the risks.
Regarding the risk of being shot down, preventive measures include but are not limited to:
The clear and exclusive mission statement of Ascent Charity is to provide humanitarian aid assistance only
Announcing every drone flight before take-off, published on Ascent Charity’s Twitter account with tags for all parties (Ukraine, Russia, and neighbouring countries), along with visual proof to dispel any doubts.
Tracking continuously every flight as per telecommunication possibilities. All drones are equipped with transponders enabling live tracking in normal times. However, the present context requires the use of alternative solutions, as telecommunication networks have been significantly affected.
Sharing all operations details with all stakeholders voluntarily and upon request with full transparency. This includes belligerent countries, host countries, as well as France where Ascent Charity is headquartered.
Regarding accidents, preventive measures include but are not limited to:
Flight planning and operation remotely controlled
The operation being performed by trained and authorized personnel only
Sensors and cameras on board with live stream (when possible)
About Your Donation
How can you pledge your support?
Your name will be added to the “Hope Takes Flight” online dashboard, which will go live as soon as the drone operations come into effect.
With €10,000 worth of donations, you will be able to pick a name for a drone flight, where each drone flight will be broadcasted on Twitter in real-time, with a projection of up to 50 flights per day.
With €200,000 worth of donations, you will be able to name a drone. Special mention of the donor’s name on Ascent Charity’s communication such as website, Twitter, etc. Taking this initiative to greater heights, Ascent is also planning to enable donors to track their drone flights online, every day
Who I am donating to? Who makes U-AID happen?
You are donating to Ascent Charity. Ascent Charity is an independent charity registered in France (Loi 1901, W313036218, est. 2022) whose mission is to provide vital humanitarian assistance and aid to vulnerable populations in times of crisis via air transport. U-AID is an Ascent Charity program that has been endorsed by the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Ukraine and is in charge of coordinating emergency actions initiatives.
To make U-AID happen, Ascent Charity closely works with the State of Emergency Service of Ukraine, AerialMetric and Ascent.
The State of Emergency Service of Ukraine is the division of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Ukraine, in charge of national crisis and emergency response.
AerialMetric is a leading provider of emergency relief drone operations supporting countries and international organizations such as WWF, The Global Fund, USAID.
Ascent is a leading air mobility company running operations such as air taxis, cargo and medical services in South East Asia, South America and the United Arab Emirates.
More humanitarian partners are expected to join U-AID.
How will my donation be used?
Your donation will help Ascent Charity to fly humanitarian aid from the State Emergency Service of Ukraine and other humanitarian partners by drone to people and hospitals in urgent need, especially where supply routes have been cut. The funds will be used to procure up to 50 drones (each at an average price of EUR 140,000), and cover operating, logistics, human resources, and training costs required to operate. 50 drones will deliver up to 1 ton of humanitarian aid per day, across our bases in neighbouring countries initially (Poland, Romania, Hungary, Slovakia and Moldova) and subsequently from secured humanitarian corridors and hubs in Ukraine. This procurement takes into account service availability rates and possible loss of drones in zones of conflict, despite comprehensive mitigation measures implemented.
U-AID is being set up to operate in two phases, during wartime and the rebuilding period. The full operation is planned to last for up to 6 months.
After the U-AID initiative, Ascent Charity will offer its capabilities for use in other emergency relief crises such as conflicts, or/and natural disasters around the globe.
What controls are in place to ensure the proper use of funds ?
Our accounts are audited by an external auditor. This validates our accounts and certifies them. They are then approved by our members at the annual General Assembly of the association.
How do I get a confirmation for my donation?
For donations made through U-AID’s GoFundMe page, GoFundMe will send you an email to the registered email address, For donations made via bank transfers, a confirmation email will be sent.
Your donation might be tax-deductible according to your country’s tax authorities. We encourage you to reach out to them to know more about the eligibility for a tax deduction or recognition of your contribution.
What’s the minimum amount required to launch the project?
We will launch the first couple of drones as soon as we reach EUR 300,000 of donations. This will allow us to dispatch and operate 2-3 drones for a period of 3 months. Two drones are the minimum required to ensure reliable operations from the first base in Zamosc, Poland.
What happens to the funds if he doesn’t hit this target?
If we don't reach the minimum of EUR 300,000, we will refund individual donations through GoFundMe and corporation donations via bank transfer.
Can I donate goods instead of money?
Yes. All kinds of support are welcomed. Please contact us at email@example.com. Together, we will coordinate with our humanitarian partners on essential goods and medical supplies needed, as well as the logistics details.
How are Ascent Charity partners donating and contributing to the initiative?
The State of Emergency Service of Ukraine is providing essential goods and medical supplies, a central operational base in Zamosc, Poland, training facilities in Bydgoszcz, Poland, as well as relay locations for battery swap within Ukraine.
Ascent is dedicating most of its resources pro bono to establishing U-AID, assembling partners, deploying its staff and running the operations at cost. In addition, Ascent is repurposing its technology with no license fee and will provide at cost tailored versions to support dedicated air operations, along with security enhancements.
AerialMetric is providing drone services and training at a significant preferred rate. In addition, AerialMetric is reprioritizing its engagements to be operational as per U-AID dynamic requirements in complex conditions of operations.
More humanitarian and industry partners are expected to join the effort.
Does such an operation and investment make sense for a short period of time?
Yes. U-AID is set up to operate during wartime and during the rebuilding period, which will, unfortunately, last for months.
Ascent Charity will then offer its capabilities for use in other emergency relief crises such as conflicts, and natural disasters around the globe. We are already in discussion for projects in Africa.
How do I contact Ascent Charity to donate?
For any enquiries related to the donation initiative, please feel free to reach out to us via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or Whatsapp at +33 6 8486 2505.
How do I contact Ascent Charity to explore partnerships?
We are always happy to explore ways to grow our impact for good. Please feel free to contact us at email@example.com or Whatsapp at +65 9670 3012.