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Join Corinna Bellizzi for a quick commentary on Russia’s retreating forces and a snip from her interview with Daniel Tonkopi, Delfast Ebikes founder who got his company’s start in Kiev.
News articles mentioned in this livestream:
Podcast interview with Daniel Tonkopi:
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Corinna Bellizzi: Thank you for joining me today for this piece of breaking news specifically about what is happening in Ukraine. You know, I launched this podcast almost two years ago and I ultimately did so to bring forth social impact and sustainability stories. One of the hardest things that we can do. When we encounter some really tough news and difficult happenings around the world is really to remain vigilant.
When we are faced with bad news consistently standing with Ukraine, isn’t something that should be turned on or off like a light switch. And today we have some positive news. So I wanted to be sure everyone in my community is aware. Russia’s war plan was rocked by Ukraine’s rapid recent gains in the territory.
Now I’ll quote the Wall Wtreet. Journal’s recent article titled Russia’s War Plan is Rocked by Ukraine’s Rapid Gains. This was written by Thomas Grove and Ann M. Simmons published today, September 13th, 2020.
“Russia’s chaotic retreat from strongholds in Northeastern Ukraine, cities and towns. It took months to capture has left Moscow’s political and military leadership struggling to absorb the scale of the losses, according to analysts who follow domestic Russian politics.”—
This egg on the face reality may not last. It’s possible that Russia will regain their losses and continue the dramatic harm on the people of the Ukraine. But for now we can applaud their effort. We can applaud what they’ve gained as they continue to pile pressure on a retreating Russian force.
On this topic. I want to share with you a clip from a recent interview in which I connected with Daniel Tonkopi of Delfast e-bikes. He spoke with me about what he’s personally doing to support the people of Ukraine. Since he got his company’s start and Kiev, this is a personal interest for him.
Corinna Bellizzi: So Daniel, as we get started with today’s conversation, I would really just love to know what it is that you’re doing specifically in the Ukraine to support people there, to stand with Ukraine as these 5% of your revenues are going directly to support people there.
Daniel Tonkopi: Yeah. Thank you for asking and thank you for support to Ukraine and for being with us, for staying with us. Yeah, we do a lot. We work as, uh, In two shifts. Now, one shift is, uh, in Delas or in other companies. And second shift is to fight against the Russian invasion. So what we do, uh, 5% is, or what we donate to, to the people of Ukraine, of all of our revenues, uh, we give, uh, bikes for free and, uh, Ukranian army, uh, equips our bikes with the rocket launchers.
So they put it on the back and work again, trash and tanks. And as a technique,
Corinna Bellizzi: uh, these are the realities that we don’t necessarily wanna think about, but it’s, what’s happening there. And, and so you’re essentially actively becoming a part of the resistance.
Daniel Tonkopi: Absolutely. Yes. We help, uh, to medical, uh, volunteers.
We. Some medicine and, uh, medical equipment. We buy binoculars, we buy our like internet connection and, uh, and everything to them. But this is not only what we do. We do. Uh, we, we are in the resistance. And for example, right now, uh, there is a flesh mob in internet, or started from Ukrainian it companies, uh, we change.
There, you know, on the websites, on online services, there is a, a language bar. Like you can choose English or Russian Ukrainian or anywhere, anything. Uh, and, uh, instead of just Russian, uh, we put Russia is a terrorist state. So we, yeah, we encourage Biden and Congress and blink to announce Russia as a state of sponsor of terrorism because Russia is killing innocent people.
They killing hostages. They are. They bump, they constantly bump in, uh, cities. So, and they don’t Abey any laws and traditional,
Corinna Bellizzi: Yeah, You’re talking about cities, hospitals and schools have all been targeted.
Daniel Tonkopi: Yes. Yes, absolutely. So we encourage bloom and Biden to announce it as a terrorist state. Apart from that we go to rallies.
I live in LA, uh, and, uh, there are a lot of rallies and we stay there. Like we show people, just, just Americans. So what what’s going on? And at, at one moment, I thought there. Well, that’s probably not enough. We have to go more, not just to stay on one, cross the road, but wider to show, to like to larger audience.
So, uh, I organized a group of volunteers and, uh, we started to publish in, uh, Congress. People’s, uh, Twitters, uh, what’s going on. We sent pictures, uh, from the ground from Ukraine. We, we, we give the information, we share the actual statistics. So we share the information and we, uh, in order to give them objective, uh, yeah, uh, status and we had, uh, and we have some successes, like.
In the very beginning of the war Biden didn’t want to support Ukraine because he was afraid of a nuclear war, or he didn’t want to escalate. Uh, but we needed help. We needed, uh, high Mars. We needed military equipment. So we started to speak with senators and with Congress people, I called to Ukrainian entrepreneurs, uh, famous bloggers, and we made a group of Ukrainian leaders against the.
And that’s how we called Yula. Yula. Yeah. Thank you. Uh, and we spoke to senators and finally Congress approved this land, lease for 40 billion help. This is, this was. We helped to make it happen. So
Corinna Bellizzi: what you’re speaking to is sometimes activism has to be a little noisy and also creative. You have to band together and guess what?
Congress listens to entrepreneurs because you’re creating money and you are paying taxes and you sometimes have to leverage that and be, be a little noisy and be that squeaky wheel from that little moniker on your site to call Russia a terror, Russia, terrorist state. Yes. To. The bras tax of getting a group together and approaching and lobbying Congress.
So yes, heads off to you for doing that.
Daniel Tonkopi: Thank you. And this is not only about Ukraine. It’s about the world. Mm-hmm . If Ukraine will loosen this war, this will give, uh, Well signal to the entire world that that’s a democracy probably, uh, will lose, uh, when staying in front of, uh, Putinism like,
Corinna Bellizzi: well that it sets precedent, right.
It sets precedent for what we allow and yes, ultimately the annihilation and elimination of an entire culture and people’s yeah. Is not something we can stand idly by. Absolutely. Deal with, so thank you very much. Thank you for that. And, um, for giving 5% of all sales from Del Fest to this effort, in addition to the other efforts, which are not necessarily monetary, but which are just as important and vital, that’s incredible.
And I, for one appreciate it. It’s helpful for me to be able to tell a piece of this story. It’s very sensitive. And I should probably have prefaced today’s episode with a bit of a trigger warning about that, because the reality is when we talk about war, people get really uncomfortable, but the re Hey, we gotta talk about the uncomfortable things too.
Daniel Tonkopi: we, we are dying. People are dying. People are living country. This is our reality. And we are fighting with this invasion. This is not what we wanted to have. This is, uh, what our. Like crazy Russian army invaded to Ukraine. So we protect our houses and we are proud to, to do this. Yes, we, we will fight, uh, for our houses.
Corinna Bellizzi: The spirit of the Ukrainian people has been on full display for all of us, very much your president and, and, um, really from everyone.
So it’s been, it’s been an incredible journey. Thank you. And thank you for your efforts with Delfast. That’s incredible.
Daniel Tonkopi: Yes. Thank you. And thank you to you for your support and thank you to all Americans for staying with Ukraine and thank you to Congress and thanks to Biden too. Well, we do appreciate the United States for all the help and for all the support.
Corinna Bellizzi: So instead of learning more about the eBike, I’m jumping back in here because that’s the snip I wanted to share. It gives a face of humanity to the struggles that we’re seeing in the Ukraine. And I want for all of you to think about. If you take a moment. And if you look at the articles that you see online, there’s one in fact, by w top news, um, that I just found today and looking at the photographs there, I’m reminded of World War II.
If you just simply made these images, black and white and removed the smartphone. That’s what it looks like. So let’s think about that. Let’s think about the damage that is being done and what we can do to help prevent it. One of the things that we can do is we can let our Congress people know that we do not support the lifting of sanctions against Russia.
Granted, this is of course, something that Putin’s war machine is trying to get out there. The propaganda ultimately saying I’m gonna continue to squeeze everyone I can, until you start lifting sanctions. Well, he’s on the run. So we don’t need to do any of that right now. It’s important to remain vigilant.
Now if you are a budding activist, and you’d like to know a little bit more about what you can do to unleash your inner activist. I encourage you to simply go to care more, be better.com. If you sign up for my email newsletter, I only send one email a week, never more. Um, then you can ultimately receive a five step guide to unleash your inner activist.
It’s a resource guide it’s primarily focused on climate activism and includes many. To different charities that you can support and get involved with. If that’s your. But if the Ukraine war and protesting against that is your jam, you can adapt it just as simply to that. So I want to thank you all for spending this brief moment with me.
As I offered this breaking news interlude, I would encourage you all to go and review my full interview with Daniel Tonkopi. As we talked about his work with Delrats e-bikes and if you’re in the market for a great e-bike, that can. As many miles as your Chevy bolt might, I’m talking 230 plus miles on a single charge.
Then perhaps his bikes are a solution for you. I will include links to that episode with show notes, as well as two links to articles that can help to keep you informed on this topic. Thank you for all of your efforts and support of this show. I appreciate every single one of my listeners. And if you have any thoughts that you’d like to share directly with me, you can always send me an email note to hello.
Care more, be better.com or message me on social platforms. You can even leave me a voicemail directly on the care, more, be better.com site. Thank you now. And always for being a part of this pod and this community, because together we really can do so much more. We can care more and we can be better. We can even defeat Russia’s advances.