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Utah Jazz to fund temporary housing for Ukrainian refugees

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Photo of the Jazz note statue.

The J-note sculpture outside of the Vivint Arena in Salt Lake City, pictured on Wednesday, Oct. 13, 2021, has been painted black and white as part of a rebranding effort for the team. The Utah Jazz are funding temporary housing for Ukrainian refugees.

Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News

The Utah Jazz have joined other Utah leaders in helping refugees fleeing from Ukraine.

The Jazz contributed 32,200 nights of housing for Ukrainian refugees through Airbnb.org, which is providing temporary housing for those in need.

“The Utah Jazz Foundation is honored to partner with Airbnb.org to fund stays for refugees who have fled Ukraine — enough to fill every seat right here in our own house — Vivint Arena — nearly two times over,” Jazz owner Ryan Smith said in a statement. “And we can’t stop there. I encourage every organization to support Airbnb.org’s important initiative, to magnify their impact and house enough refugees to fill their arenas or workplaces.” 

Airbnb hosts are offering short-term stays at housing to those fleeing Ukraine, paid for by donors.

“I cannot begin to express my thanks to the Utah Jazz Foundation for their support of Airbnb.org’s work,” Airbnb co-founder Joe Gebbia said. This incredible commitment will play a meaningful role in helping us meet our goal of providing free, temporary housing to 100,000 refugees fleeing Ukraine — offering not only a roof over their heads, but also a safe place to gather and regroup.”

The Jazz’s donation is the latest move by Utah leaders to support Ukrainian refugees.

Led by Gail Miller and Utah Gov. Spencer Cox, Utah businesses leaders, philanthropies and donors raised $2 million to help Ukrainian refugees and established a fundraiser for Utahns to contribute.