Help Support Displaced Ukrainian Musicians

Millions of Ukrainians have been displaced since the invasion beginning February 24, 2022. Many of my friends and colleagues have asked how they can help those who are suffering absolute devastation during this terrible war on Ukraine. I hope to raise funds, especially for the young musicians who lost everything and are virtually homeless. They have lost their homes, their livelihoods, and, in many cases, their loved ones. My heart and prayers are with them, and now I want to do all that I can to help them survive.

I would like to introduce myself and to share with you a story about this fundraiser and why I have created it.
My name is Irena Portenko. I am a concert pianist, educator and a Director of International Festival “Music in the Alps” (
Throughout my career, I have traveled extensively with solo, chamber music as well as with performances with orchestra.
In parallel, my teaching career has given me wonderful opportunities to meet new colleagues in many countries of the US, Europe and Asia. I especially cherish my encounters with young talented students during each of these trips.
After establishing “Music in the Alps”, I have gotten an opportunity to invite young performers from all over the world to present their concerts in Austria. I have also cherished a possibility to support young Ukrainian musicians. For example, in 2018, I have invited and fully supported 18 Ukrainian musicians to come to Austria for three week festival term to perform, to learn, to collaborate and to make lifelong friendships. 

These days, when the whole world is watching Ukraine’s fight for its freedom, my first and utmost desire is to help young musicians, whose lives came to halt.
I had been connected to each of these people before the war, but even more so since it started on February 24th, 2022.  With your irreplaceable help,  it will be my honor to keep their hopes alive. Believe me, they deserve it. They are tough, they are persistent, intelligent and incredibly compassionate. 
In spite of the war, they are keeping their personal and professional integrity, sharpening  their skills and opening  their minds towards new opportunities.

It was met with enthusiasm and full understanding about what needs to be done for them at this very moment. 

Among you, my team of supporters  there are professional musicians, amateurs, people who just enjoy music or who study it either in depth or just are entering it’s beautiful world.  
Since starting this fundraiser, the interest to it has increased to the extent, that it reached the initial goal within short five days. The donations kept coming in even after achieving the goal, and it prompted me to increase the bar line to the next level.  This might not be the final line, as I will happily expand a circle of recipients with the first opportunity.
Unlike in other circumstances, with this fundraiser supporters especially appreciate the fact, that all the proceeds go directly to the young musicians onto their accounts and they can use their resources right away.  I am grateful for this opportunity and for GoFundMe to open this green light to better the lives of the Ukrainian musicians. 

Thank you fo joining me in our togetherness to make all possible efforts to slow down, and to eventually stop this unprovoked war against our beloved Ukraine.



  • Yong Hi Moon
    • $250 
    • 2 mos
  • Anonymous
    • $50 
    • 3 mos
  • Javier García-Torres
    • $500 
    • 7 mos
  • Marsha Gordon
    • $500 
    • 7 mos
  • Fred Jacobs
    • $25 
    • 7 mos

Fundraising team (2)

Irena Portenko
Raised $28,188 from 85 donations
Dobbs Ferry, NY
Tara Framer
Team member
Raised $23 from 1 donation
This team raised $15,397 from 67 other donations.

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