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From save the children

Since the escalation of conflict, more than 1000 children have been killed or injured in Ukraine. Nearly one -third of the population has been displaced and more than 7.6 million refugees have been recorded across Europe with thousands of people still being forced to flee from the fighting. Families have limited access to essential items and services including healthcare, food and water. The ongoing conflict has additionally made it difficult for children to access education with only 51% of schools currently open. The funding received from Footprints supported Save the Children’s Ukraine Crisis response to ensure the essential needs of children and families are met.

Key Project Activites

Child Protection: We have set up Child Friendly spaces in bunkers and at evacuation centres where children can play and socialise. We have also distributed bunker kits to children with toys and games that encourage play and learning.

Cash and Voucher Assistance: We have provided cash and vouchers to families allowing them to buy food, medicine, fuel and other essentials while supporting local markets and businesses.

Education: We have delivered education kits to children so they don’t miss out on crucial learning, organised summer camps to foster peer-to peer support, repaired damaged schools and set up digital learning centres. We have also provided over 800 tablets from our “Library for All” program, loaded with 325 books and our educational software “Elevate” in Ukrainian language which has allowed thousands of children to continue their education.

Mental Health and Psychosocial support: Our psychologists and mental health experts are working with children and families to help them process traumatic experiences.

Essential Needs: We are meeting urgent needs by delivering food, fuel, water, hygiene kits, dignity kits and baby kits to families who have been displaced or live near active conflict zones.
Health: We’re providing essential medical supplies and support to health teams and hospitals, with a focus on maternal and newborn health as well as supplying trauma kits to treat injuries

Key Project Outcomes

Since the conflict began, Save the Children has reached more than 1,095,323 people in Ukraine as well as Poland, Romania and Lithuania where families have been forced to flee, including 614,118 children. We worked closely with partners, communities and authorities in Ukraine and across Europe to make sure children and families have had the support they needed, just like we have been doing since we started working in Ukraine in 2014. This support includes:

  • Providing Cash and Voucher assistance to 105,048 families totaling over US$29 million.
  • Providing medical care to 45,200 families through essential medical equipment, supplies and offering expertise to hospitals and mobile health teams.
  • Distributing 61,986 Hygiene Kits containing soap, toothbrushes, shampoo, disinfectant and clean drinking water.
  • Setting up 62 Child Friendly Spaces where children can feel safe and play.
  • Helping over 5,000 children with child protection services.
  • Setting up 83 digital learning spaces providing access to quality education to 49,546 children. We have also supported 50 schools and kindergartens by helping repair damages as well as providing training and equipment to teachers.
  • Running summer camps for 1,874 children to give them a chance to recover from their experiences of war
  • Providing mental health and psychosocial support to 34,770 people.

Community Involvement

Responding to a crisis of this scale is not possible without incredible support from the community, in particular the local partner organisations we work closely with to deliver our programs. To date, we have worked with 42 partner organisations in Ukraine and neighbouring countries. Their support and expertise means we can reach more children and families and ensure their needs are met as best as possible. One such partner is Slavic Heart who have worked in Eastern Ukraine since 2014 and have an in-depth knowledge of the challenges in the region. As a partner of Save the Children, they have been providing psychosocial support, running Child Friendly Spaces, distributing essential supplies as well as toys and games. Olga*, Head of Slavic Heart, talked about the importance of providing toys and games to children “Very often the families of these children, cannot leave.?It is very important to support the children who are right there, right in the war zone. Those children who, unfortunately, are still in the war zone, now will have at least some moment of joy, at least some kind of smile.”

What’s Next?

Save the Children will continue providing emergency assistance in Ukraine for the foreseeable future to ensure the needs of children and families continue to be met. With the conflict ongoing and no end in sight, it is difficult to say when communities in Ukraine will be able to be self-reliant. Two out of five families are in extreme need of livelihood support and basic items as the country experiences unprecedented rates of displacement, inflation and unemployment. As the conflict continues, the needs of children and families will continue to change. Emergency support will continue to be a priority, however the impact the conflict has had on all levels of infrastructure in Ukraine means that even when the fighting has stopped, there will be significant work required to make Ukraine an environment where children can not just survive, but thrive.

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