Ukraine

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| Press release

Ukraine: Two years on, IFRC warns of increasing debt creating unstable futures for millions 

Geneva / Budapest / Kyiv 16 February 2024 – Two years since the Russia-Ukraine international armed conflict escalated, the human cost is insurmountable, with no end in sight. Not only have many lost their loved ones, homes, livelihoods, and savings, but millions of Ukrainians are struggling under increasing debt. Some people have been able to start over, but others see their needs only increasing at a time when humanitarian and government programmes are narrowing or ending altogether.A survey commissioned by the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) has found that more than 50 per cent of people in Ukraine and living in other parts of Europe still have urgent unmet needs like medical assistance, accommodation, and employment. This is forcing them to assume debt or to accept underpaid, marginalized, or dangerous employment. On top of that, the mental health and psychosocial toll is mounting.IFRC Europe Regional Director, Birgitte Bischoff Ebbesen said:“Many people inside and outside Ukraine have had to start over from zero. For marginalized groups, like the elderly, the needs skyrocket further as they are more isolated, and struggle to access services and income opportunities. Amid soaring inflation and economic uncertainty, relying on small and irregular income for two years has depleted people’s savings.”In neighbouring countries, a third of people from Ukraine are borrowing money to survive. Families may spend more than a fifth of their income servicing debt, which can be a great burden and a source of anxiety. Nearly 60 per cent of respondents’ primary stress is the overall situation in Ukraine and almost half of people surveyed have said they are anxious about the uncertain future they and their family face.IFRC’s network of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies has allowed for a truly global response, ensuring 18 million people are receiving support across 60 countries. This includes immediate relief assistance, health and care, mental health, and psychosocial support, as well as support to housing. Cash assistance has been a lifeline for more than 1.1 million people in Ukraine and across Europe, preventing them from falling into even greater debt, and helping with rent, healthcare, and education.Inside Ukraine, fighting and shelling are still an everyday reality to millions. People are living with this uncertainty and pervasive stress every day. Winter conditions have made it even more difficult when many houses are damaged or destroyed and water, gas and electricity supplies are limited. In hardest hit areas, essential services are difficult to access, and people face shortages of food, water and medicine. Around 55 per cent of the population in hardest hit oblasts expressed requiring urgent unmet needs with only 23 per cent having access to humanitarian assistance. Ukrainian Red Cross Director General, Maksym Dotsenko said:"Millions of people have lost their near and dear ones; their homes and all the property they had. They have to start their lives from scratch. Despite constant shelling and damaged infrastructure, the Ukrainian Red Cross managed to help more than 12 million people. Thanks to the powerful work of our team, who make tireless efforts twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week, we were able to provide the most vulnerable with basic necessities, evacuate them from hazardous locations and be where our help is most needed."The Ukrainian Red Cross is working hard to provide emergency services to those impacted by the ongoing fighting, while also supporting the recovery and reconstruction efforts in many parts of Ukraine. This includes social care services, assistance with home repairs, small business loans, and vocational training that allows people to build on skills and retrain for new careers.“Despite the incredible impact we and others have made, now is not the time to turn a blind eye. The global attention and resources for Ukraine are waning but the humanitarian needs remain. By investing in social integration and rehabilitation programmes and local emergency response capacities, it is our ambition to help communities in Ukraine and impacted countries become stronger and more resilient than before,” said Ebbesen.More about the work of the IFRC network:supporting 18 million people impacted in Ukraine and around the globeThrough more than 60 National Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies globally responding to the needs of people from Ukraine, in the last two years the IFRC network has helped 18 million people with immediate relief assistance. The network has also helped 1.8 million people with health and care support including 1.1 million with mental health and psychosocial support. To help tackle shortages in housing, 2.2 million have received support in accommodation by host communities.Cash assistance has been a lifeline for more than 1.1 million people in Ukraine and across Europe, preventing them from falling into even greater debt, helping with rent and utilities, healthcare, and education expenses.Language and integration into host communities is still a major barrier. Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies are offering language classes, community groups, and vocational training, making it easier for displaced people to find a job, connect better with communities and become self-sustainable.Using their relationships in communities, the Ukrainian Red Cross is playing a key role in setting up rehabilitation and mental health services. Staff and volunteers are offering social care services, assistance with home repairs, small business loans, and vocational training that allows people to build on skills and retrain for new careers.IFRC’s Ukraine and impacted country appeal has a 38 per cent funding shortfallThe IFRC emergency appeal has only received 62 per cent of the funding requested, leaving a significant gap in resources to address the increasingly severe needs of the impacted population today. Investment in both immediate humanitarian assistance and longer-term social integration and rehabilitation programmes is critical to help communities in Ukraine and impacted countries become stronger and more resilient than before.Data links:IMPACT survey: https://dashboards.impact-initiatives.org/reg/longitudinal_surveys/IFRC Post-Distribution Monitoring Survey: https://go.ifrc.org/emergencies/5854/additional-info/multi-purpose-cash-and-pdmFor more information or to request an interview, please contact:[email protected] Kyiv: Angela Hill, +380 50 347 8527In Budapest:Edgar Zuniga, +36 20 377 7221In Geneva:Tommaso Della Longa, +41 79 708 43 67 Andrew Thomas, +41 76 367 65 87

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| Podcast

Nataliia Korniienko: Helping her fellow refugees cope with the stresses of conflict, migration and starting over

Nataliia Korniienko knows firsthand the psychological and emotional stresses of conflict, migration and living as a refugee. In 2022, she was a mental health and psychosocial field officer for the ICRC when conflict finally forced her and her daughter to leave for Poland. Now her experience as a psychologist, former Ukrainian Red Cross technical adviser and refugee is helping her provide services to other Ukrainian refugees throughout Europe as a mental health and psychsocial specialist for the IFRC.

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| Article

Breaking the silence: addressing mental health and fighting stigma in the aftermath of Ukraine's conflict

Since the outbreak of the conflict in Ukraine, millions of people have been displaced from their homes, facing distressing situations that have left them with trauma and loss. The impact of this crisis on mental health cannot be underestimated, with one in five individuals affected by mental health disorders in post-conflict settings, as reported by the World Health Organization (WHO). The conflict in Ukraine has been devastating, forcing 6,199,700 people to flee their homes as refugees around the world, with an additional 5,088,000 internally displaced within Ukraine itself. These individuals have endured heartbreaking losses, including the deaths of loved ones, the destruction of their homes, and the loss of their livelihoods. Witnessing traumatic events has further compounded the mental anguish faced by many. Since the beginning of the conflict, Red Cross and Red Crescent staff and volunteers have been on the ground, assisting people at border crossing points, train stations, and temporary shelters. They have been providing a listening ear, demonstrating empathy, sharing life-saving information, and taking care of vulnerable individuals. In neighboring countries, IFRC member National Societies are witnessing an increasing number of pleas for mental health assistance through their community feedback systems. To address this massive need for mental health and psychosocial support, IFRC, the IFRC Psychosocial Centre, and National Red Cross Societies in Ukraine and 24 European countries have united their efforts. Since 2022 June, the EU4Health program provides in-person Psychological First Aid (PFA) within Mental Health and Psychosocial Support (MHPSS) services, via helplines and other service platforms, and by building and strengthening the capacities of Red Cross Red Crescent National Society staff and volunteers, frontline responders and other professionals. “Through this project, we are continuously creating the awareness to all that it is okay to take a break and prioritize your emotional, psychological, and social well-being especially in stressful situations,” says Basilio Muiruri acting Project Coordinator of Health and Care at IFRC Europe. “As a team together with the national societies’ staff and volunteers, we are emphasizing to the people fleeing Ukraine and those affected inside Ukraine, that indeed they are worthy of happiness and peace of mind, through provision of psychological first aid and basic coping skills.” As part of the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Health and Food Safety (DG SANTE), the EU4Health programme takes a comprehensive approach to mental health and psychosocial support. Funded by the European Union, EU4Health is committed to restoring hope and healing to the people of Ukraine during their time of greatest need. In this collaborative project, National Red Cross Societies in Ukraine and 24 European countries have achieved significant milestones in their mission in the last year to provide psychosocial support to individuals displaced from Ukraine. Some key accomplishments include: Establishment of 27 helplines providing Psychological First Aid and Psychosocial Support services to 68,706 people displaced from Ukraine. Training of 4,114 staff and volunteers in Psychological First Aid and Psychosocial Support, including 440 who are Ukrainian or Russian speakers. Engagement of 1,853 staff, volunteers, and first responders in the response to the Ukraine crisis. Facilitation of 490 meetings between National Societies, key stakeholders, and partners to ensure a coordinated response. Mental health is a neglected area of public health in the WHO European Region, with over 150 million people suffering from mental health conditions by 2021. Only 1 in 3 individuals with depression receive proper care, according to The Pan-European Mental Health Coalition (who.int). The conflict in Ukraine has led to an estimated 15 million people needing psychosocial support, with millions potentially requiring medical treatment. Stigma, discrimination, and human rights abuses still hinder access to mental health services. World Mental Health Day on October 10th serves as an opportunity to raise awareness and address gaps in mental health services, with a focus on it being a universal human right in 2023. The content of this article is the sole responsibility of IFRC and does not necessarily reflect the views of the European Union.

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| Article

IFRC releases findings on Belarus Red Cross Secretary General: call for dismissal

This statement is available in English and in Belarusian, Russian and Ukrainian below. Geneva, 3 October 2023– The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) investigation found that the current Belarus Red Cross Secretary General breached Red Cross Red Crescent Fundamental Principles, misused the emblem, and breached the IFRC integrity policy. The IFRC’s Compliance and Mediation Committee (CMC) performed an investigation into the allegations related to the Belarus Red Cross Secretary General’s statements, including on nuclear weapons and on the movement of children to Belarus, and his visit to Luhansk and Donetsk. The IFRC Governing Board endorsed the CMC findings and recommendations, and sanctioned Mr Dmitry Shevtsov, Secretary General of Belarus Red Cross, due to him having acted in breach of the Integrity Policy, by preventing him from holding any governance positions in the IFRC until further notice. The Governing Board also called for the following: On the Belarus Red Cross to dismiss Mr Dmitry Shevtsov, the current Secretary General, by 30 November 2023. For the suspension of any new partnership and funding to the Belarus Red Cross, if the National Society does not comply with the decision of the Governing Board by 30 November 2023, asking the other components of the Red Cross Red Crescent Movement to do the same. Although there was a lack of access to Luhansk and Donetsk, the investigation still found that the movement of children from these territories to Belarus was led by another organization, and not by the Belarus Red Cross, nor funded by the IFRC. The investigation found that the Belarus Red Cross’ involvement in activities with children is focused inside Belarus, supporting people displaced by conflict. The Belarus Red Cross needs to comply with these decisions by 30 November 2023. This gives the Belarus Red Cross the time to comply with its internal rules and call for its Congress to take the requested actions. If the Belarus Red Cross does not take the necessary actions to remove the current Secretary General, its membership rights will be suspended automatically on 30 November 2023. At that point, any new funding will be suspended until the removal of the current Belarus Red Cross Secretary General as he was found to be solely responsible for all the allegations: his actions were carried out alone and not with the agreement of the National Society. If suspended from membership status, the Belarus Red Cross will lose its rights as a member of the IFRC. Funding through the Belarus Red Cross will be suspended, and the Belarus Red Cross will not be able to participate in the General Assembly of the IFRC, vote or be elected in any IFRC statutory meeting. Neutrality is critical in every context, even more so during an international armed conflict: the IFRC cannot accept any politicization or manipulation of its humanitarian activities. Every National Red Cross Red Crescent Society needs to follow the Fundamental Principles and be far from every political action. This makes the difference between life and death for many. Neutrality and integrity are essential to the delivery of the IFRC’s mission, which is why as the world’s largest humanitarian network we have protocols in place to sanction individuals and National Societies who do not live up to these principles. Though rare, these decisions ultimately make this mission stronger. In the case of suspension of membership, the suspension will be revoked by the Governing Board and the Belarus Red Cross will be reinstated immediately to the IFRC, and funds will be released, after the removal of the current Secretary General that would indicate the distancing of the National Society from his actions. The IFRC’s commitment to Belarus remains strong. The IFRC will help develop a transition plan to ensure that services to vulnerable communities do not suffer. Belarus Red Cross volunteers work tirelessly to help communities prepare for and respond to crises. IFRC is hopeful that this decision will help them move forward in delivering our mission. The IFRC remains committed to supporting a strong and vibrant Belarus Red Cross—and encourages Belarus Red Cross volunteers, staff and members to remain engaged in their National Society. -- Belarusian МФТЧКіЧП апублублікавала вынікі расследавання дзейнасці Генеральнага сакратара Беларускага Чырвонага Крыжа. Заклік да адстаўкі. Жэнева, 3 кастрычніка 2023. Расследаванне Міжнароднай Федэрацыі таварыстваў Чырвонага Крыжа і Чырвонага Паўмесяца (МФТЧКіЧП) паказала, што дзеючы Генеральны сакратар Беларускага Чырвонага Крыжа парушыў Асноўныя прынцыпы Руху Чырвонага Крыжа і Чырвонага Паўмесяца, правілы выкарыстання яго эмблем і Палітыку добрасумленнасці МФТЧКіЧП. Камітэт па выкананні прававых нормаў і пасярэдніцтве МФТЧКіЧП правёў расследаванне абвінавачанняў, выкліканых афіцыйнымі заявамі Генеральнага сакратара Беларускага Чырвонага Крыжа, у тым ліку аб ядзернай зброі і перамяшчэнні дзяцей у Беларусь, а таксама ў сувязі з яго візітам у Луганск і Данецк. Праўленне МФТЧКіЧП падтрымала высновы і рэкамендацыі Камітэта па выкананні прававых нормаў і пасярэдніцтве і, у сувязі з парушэннем Генеральным сакрактаром Беларускага Чырвонага Крыжа Дзмітрыем Шаўцовым Палітыкі добрасумленнасці, падвергнула апошняга абмежавальным мерам, забаранiўшы яму займаць якія-небудзь кіруючыя пасады ў МФТЧКіЧП да далейшага апавяшчэння. Праўленне таксама заклікае: Беларускі Чырвоны Крыж вызваліць Генеральнага сакратара Дзмітрыя Шаўцова ад займаемай пасады не пазней за 30 лістапада 2023 года. Устрымацца ад новых партнёрскіх абавязацельстваў у дачыненні да Беларускага Чырвонага Крыжа, у тым ліку фінансавання, у выпадку, калі Нацыянальнае Таварыства не выканае рашэнне Праўлення да 30 лістапада 2023 года. Праўленне звяртаецца да іншых кампанентаў Руху Чырвонага Крыжа і Чырвонага Паўмесяца з просьбай зрабіць тое ж самае. Нягледзячы на адсутнасць доступу ў Луганск і Данецк, у выніку расследавання было ўстаноўлена, што перамяшчэнне дзяцей з гэтых тэрыторый у Беларусь ажыццяўлялася не Беларускім Чырвоным Крыжом, а іншай арганізацыяй, а таксама не фінансавалася МФТЧКіЧП. У ходзе расследавання было ўстаноўлена, што ўдзел Беларускага Чырвонага Крыжа ў дзейнасці з дзецьмі засяроджаны ўнутры краіны і накіраваны на падтрымку людзей, перамешчаных у выніку канфлікту. Беларускі Чырвоны Крыж павінен выканаць гэтыя рашэнні да 30 лістапада 2023 года. Дадзеная ўмова дае Беларускаму Чырвонаму Крыжу час выканаць унутраныя правілы і звярнуцца да З'езду Беларускага Чырвонага Крыжа з просьбай прыняць патрабаваныя меры. Калі Беларускі Чырвоны Крыж не прыме неабходных дзеянняў для адхілення дзеючага Генеральнага сакратара, членскія правы Нацыянальнага таварыства будуць аўтаматычна прыпынены 30 лістапада 2023 года. Пасля гэтага любое новае фінансаванне не будзе прадастаўляцца да моманту адхілення ад пасады дзейнага Генеральнага сакратара Беларускага Чырвонага Крыжа, паколькі было ўстаноўлена, што ён нясе поўную адказнасць за ўсе абвінавачанні. Яго дзеянні ажыццяўляліся аднаасобна і без узгаднення з Нацыянальным таварыствам. У выпадку прыпынення членства Беларускі Чырвоны Крыж страціць свае правы як член МФТЧКіЧП. Фінансаванне праз Беларускі Чырвоны Крыж будзе прыпынена і Нацыянальнае таварыства не зможа ўдзельнічаць у Генеральнай Асамблеі МФТЧКіЧП, галасаваць або быць абраным на любой статутнай нарадзе МФТЧКіЧП. Нейтральнасць вельмі важная ў любым кантэксце; асаблівую важнасць яна набывае ва ўмовах міжнароднага ўзброенага канфлікту. МФТЧКіЧП не можа мірыцца з палітызацыяй ці маніпуляваннем гуманітарнай дзейнасцю. Кожнае Нацыянальнае таварыства Чырвонага Крыжа і Чырвонага Паўмесяца павінна прытрымлівацца Асноўных прынцыпаў і захоўваць дыстанцыю ад палітычных дзеянняў. Ад гэтага залежаць жыцці шматлікіх людзей. Нейтральнасць і добрасумленнасць з'яўляюцца найважнейшымі ўмовамі выканання місіі МФТЧКіЧП. Таму, будучы найбуйнейшай у свеце гуманітарнай арганізацыяй, МФТЧКіЧП мае пратаколы, якія прадугледжваюць санкцыі ў дачыненні да асобных асоб і Нацыянальных таварыстваў, якія не выконваюць такія прынцыпы. Няхай такія рашэнні і прымаюцца рэдка, мы перакананыя, што ў канчатковым выніку яны робяць нашу місію мацнейшай. У выпадку прыпынення членства, пасля адхілення дзеючага Генеральнага сакратара, якое сведчыць аб дыстанцыяванні Нацыянальнага таварыства ад дзеянняў апошняга, Беларускі Чырвоны Крыж будзе зноў неадкладна прыняты ў МФТЧКіЧП. У выпадку прыпынення членства прыпыненне будзе адменена Праўленнем, і членства Беларускага Чырвонага Крыжа будзе неадкладна адноўлена ў МФТЧКіЧП, а таксама будуць выдзелены сродкі, пасля адхілення дзейнага Генеральнага сакратара, што будзе сведчыць аб дыстанцыяванні Нацыянальнага таварыства ад яго дзеянняў. Прыхільнасць МФТЧКіЧП Беларусі застаецца цвёрдай. МФТЧКіЧП дапаможа распрацаваць план дзеянняў на пераходны перыяд, каб не дапусціць пагаршэння паслуг, якія прадстаўляюцца ўразлівым супольнасцям. Валанцёры Беларускага Чырвонага Крыжа нястомна працуюць, дапамагаючы насельніцтву рыхтавацца да крызісных сітуацый і рэагаваць на іх. МФТЧКіЧП спадзяецца, што сапраўднае рашэнне дапаможа ім рушыць наперад у выкананні нашай місіі. МФТЧКіЧП па-ранейшаму адданая падтрымцы моцнага і энергічнага Беларускага Чырвонага Крыжа і заклікае валанцёраў, супрацоўнікаў і членаў Беларускага Чырвонага Крыжа працягваць удзельнічаць у працы свайго Нацыянальнага таварыства. -- Russian МФОККиКП обнародовала результаты расследования деятельности Генерального секретаря Белорусского Красного Креста. Призыв к отставке Женева, 3октября2023г. Расследование Международной Федерации обществ Красного Креста и Красного Полумесяца (МФОККиКП) показало, что действующий Генеральный секретарь Белорусского Красного Креста нарушил Основополагающие принципы Движения Красного Креста и Красного Полумесяца, правила использования его эмблем и Политику добросовестности МФОККиКП. Комитет по соблюдению правовых норм и посредничеству МФОККиКП провел расследование обвинений, вызванных официальными заявлениями Генерального секретаря Белорусского Красного Креста, в том числе о ядерном оружии и перемещении детей в Беларусь, а также в связи с его визитом в Луганск и Донецк. Правление МФОККиКП поддержало выводы и рекомендации Комитета по соблюдению правовых норм и посредничеству и, в связи с нарушением Генеральным секретарем Белорусского Красного Креста Дмитрием Шевцовым Политики добросовестности, подвергло последнего ограничительным мерам, запретив ему занимать какие-либо руководящие должности в МФОККиКП до дальнейшего уведомления. Правление также призывает: Белорусский Красный Крест освободить Генерального секретаря Дмитрия Шевцова от занимаемой должности не позднее 30ноября2023года. Воздержаться от новых партнерских обязательств в отношении Белорусского Красного Креста, включая финансирование, в случае, если Национальное общество не выполнит решение Правления до 30ноября 2023года. Правление обращается к другим компонентам Движения Красного Креста и Красного Полумесяца с просьбой поступить аналогичным образом. Несмотря на отсутствие доступа в Луганск и Донецк, в результате расследования было установлено, что перемещение детей с данных территорий в Беларусь осуществлялось не Белорусским Красным Крестом, а другой организацией, а также не финансировалось МФОККиКП. В ходе расследования было установлено, что участие Белорусского Красного Креста в работе с детьми сосредоточено внутри страны и направлено на поддержку людей, перемещенных в результате конфликта. Белорусский Красный Крест должен выполнить настоящие решения до 30ноября 2023года. Данное условие дает Белорусскому Красному Кресту время соблюсти внутренние правила и обратиться к Съезду Белорусского Красного Креста с просьбой принять требуемые меры. Если Белорусский Красный Крест не предпримет необходимых действий для отстранения действующего Генерального секретаря, членские права Национального общества будут автоматически приостановлены 30ноября 2023года. После этого любое новое финансирование не будет предоставляться до момента отстранения от должности действующего Генерального секретаря Белорусского Красного Креста, поскольку было установлено, что он несет полную ответственность за все обвинения. Его действия осуществлялись единолично и без согласования с Национальным обществом. В случае приостановления членских прав Белорусский Красный Крест перестанет быть членом МФОККиКП. Финансирование через Белорусский Красный Крест будет приостановлено, и Национальное общество не сможет участвовать в Генеральной Ассамблее МФОККиКП, голосовать или быть избранным на любом уставном совещании МФОККиКП. Нейтральность крайне важна в любом контексте; особую важность она приобретает в условиях международного вооруженного конфликта. МФОККиКП не может мириться с политизацией или манипулированием гуманитарной деятельностью. Каждое Национальное общество Красного Креста и Красного Полумесяца должно следовать Основополагающим принципам и сохранять дистанцию от политических действий. От этого зависят жизни многих людей. Нейтральность и добросовестность являются важнейшими условиями выполнения миссии МФОККиКП. Поэтому, будучи крупнейшей в мире гуманитарной организацией, в МФОККиКП имеет протоколы, предусматривающие санкции в отношении отдельных лиц и Национальных обществ, не соблюдающих такие принципы. Пусть такие решения и принимаются редко, мы убеждены, что в конечном итоге они делают нашу миссию сильнее. В случае приостановления членства, после отстранения действующего Генерального секретаря, свидетельствующего о дистанцировании Национального общества от действий последнего, Белорусский Красный Крест будет вновь немедленно принят в МФОККиКП. Приверженность МФОККиКП Беларуси остается твердой. МФОККиКП поможет разработать план действий на переходный период, чтобы не допустить ухудшения предоставляемых уязвимым сообществам услуг. Волонтеры Белорусского Красного Креста неустанно работают, помогая населению готовиться к кризисным ситуациям и реагировать на них. МФОККиКП надеется, что настоящее решение поможет им продвинуться вперед в выполнении нашей миссии. МФОККиКП по-прежнему привержена поддержке сильного и энергичного Белорусского Красного Креста и призывает волонтеров, сотрудников и членов Белорусского Красного Креста продолжать участвовать в работе своего Национального общества. -- Ukrainian МФТЧХіЧП оприлюднила результати розслідування діяльності Генерального секретаря Білоруського Червоного Хреста: заклик до відсторонення Женева, 3 жовтня 2023 р. – Розслідування Міжнародної Федерації Товариств Червоного Хреста і Червоного Півмісяця дійшло висновку, що чинний Генеральний секретар Білоруського Червоного Хреста порушив Основоположні принципи Руху Червоного Хреста і Червоного Півмісяця, правила використання його емблеми і Політику добросовісності МФТЧХіЧП. Комітет із дотримання вимог і посередництва МФТЧХіЧП (далі – Комітет) провів розслідування звинувачень, пов’язаних із заявами Генерального секретаря Червоного Хреста Білорусі, зокрема щодо ядерної зброї та переміщення дітей до Білорусі, а також із його візитом до Луганська та Донецька. Правління МФЧХіЧП (далі – Правління) схвалило висновки та рекомендації Комітету і наклало санкції на пана Дмитра Шевцова, Генерального секретаря Білоруського Червоного Хреста, через те, що він діяв всупереч Політиці добросовісності, заборонивши йому обіймати будь-які керівні посади в МФЧХіЧП до подальшого розпорядження. Правління також закликає до наступного: Білоруський Червоний Хрест має звільнити пана Дмитра Шевцова, чинного Генерального секретаря, до 30 листопада 2023 року. Утриматися від будь-яких нових партнерських зобов'язань та від фінансування Білоруського Червоного Хреста, якщо Національне Товариство не виконає рішення Правління до 30 листопада 2023 року. Правління також звертається до інших компонентів Руху Червоного Хреста і Червоного Півмісяця з проханням вчинити так само. Попри відсутність доступу у Луганськ і Донецьк, під час розслідування було встановлено, що переміщення дітей з даних територій у Білорусь здійснювалося не Білоруським Червоним Хрестом, а іншою організацією, а також не фінансувалося МФТЧХіЧП. Під час розслідування також було встановлено, що Білоруський Червоний Хрест здійснює діяльність пов'язану з дітьми на територіїБілорусі, і вона спрямована на підтримку людей, переміщених внаслідок конфлікту. Білоруський Червоний Хрест має виконати ці рішення до 30 листопада 2023 року. Ця умова дає Білоруському Червоному Хресту час на дотримання внутрішніх правил та на заклик вжити необхідних заходів на період до наступного З'їзду Білоруського Червоного Хреста. Якщо Білоруський Червоний Хрест не вдастся до необхідних заходів для звільнення чинного Генерального секретаря, права Національного Товариства, як члена МФТЧХіЧП, будуть призупинені автоматично з 30 листопада 2023 року. З цього моменту будь-яке нове фінансування буде призупинено до моменту звільнення чинного секретаря Білоруського Червоного Хреста, адже було встановлено його повну відповідальність у всіхзвинуваченнях. Його дії були одноосібними і неузгодженими з Національним Товариством. У разі призупинення членства Білоруський Червоний Хрест більше не буде членом МФТЧХіЧП. Фінансування Білоруського Червоного Хреста буде призупинено, і Національне Товариство не зможе брати участь у Генеральній асамблеї МФТЧХіЧП, голосувати чи бути обраним на будь-якій статутній зустрічі МФТЧХіЧП. Нейтральність має вирішальне значення в будь-якому контексті, особливо під час міжнародного збройного конфлікту: МФТЧХіЧП не може прийняти будь-яку політизацію або маніпулювання своєю гуманітарною діяльністю. Кожне Національне Товариство Червоного Хреста і Червоного Півмісяця має дотримуватись Основоположних принципів і бути відстороненим від політичних дій. Від цього залежать життя багатьох людей. Нейтральність і добросовісність є важливими для виконання місії МФТЧХіЧП, тому, як найбільша гуманітарна мережа в світі, ми маємо протоколи для застосування санкцій до осіб і Національних Товариств, які не дотримуються цих принципів. Хоча такі рішення приймаються рідко, ми впевнені, що зрештою вони роблять нашу місію сильнішою. У разі призупинення членства, після відсторонення чинного Генерального секретаря, що свідчитиме про дистанціювання Національного Товариства від дій останнього, Білоруський Червоний Хрест буде негайно прийнято до МФТЧХіЧП знову. Зобов’язання МФТЧХіЧП щодо Білорусі залишаються міцними. МФТЧХіЧП сприятиме розробці плану дій у переходний період, щоб гарантувати, що послуги для вразливих громад не постраждають. Волонтери Білоруського Червоного Хреста невтомно працюють, щоб допомогти громадам підготуватися до кризових ситуацій і реагувати на них. МФТЧХіЧП сподівається, що це рішення допоможе їм рухатися вперед у виконанні нашої місії. МФТЧХіЧП продовжує підтримувати сильний і активний Білоруський Червоний Хрест і заохочує волонтерів, співробітників і членів Білоруського Червоного Хреста продовжувати роботу у своєму Національному Товаристві.

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Three months after the Kakhovka Dam disaster, Ukraine Red Cross still stands by affected communities

When the Kakhovka Dam in southern Ukraine collapsed in June, a torrent of water poured over downstream towns and farmlands, reducing homes to rubble and leading to the tragic loss of many lives. The flood swept up everything in its path, washing farm animals, unexploded mines, hazardous chemicals and dangerous bacteria—such as salmonella, E. coli, and cholera—down toward the Dnipro-Buh Delta on the Black Sea. The Ukraine Red Cross Society’s (URCS) response to the dam disaster was swift. From the moment the dam collapsed, their volunteers began evacuating people from flooded areas and distributing essentials such as food, hygiene products and water purification equipment. Psychosocial support specialists were also on hand to help people cope during those difficult first days. But recovering from a disaster like this doesn’t happen overnight. Three months on, URCS teams remain firmly by the side of communities to help them get their lives back on track. “People's needs have changed but have not disappeared," says Serhiy Moroz, a URCS volunteer. "In many populated areas, people are attempting to return to their previous lives in damaged housing and amidst disruptions in centralized water supply services. Often, water systems are simply non-existent, leaving people to suffer from a lack of clean water. This creates significant household challenges as well as risks to public health." The IFRC recently deployed an Emergency Response Unit or 'ERU'—a team of specialized personnel and equipment from across the IFRC network—to Kropyvnytskyi city to support the Ukraine Red Crescent Society’s work restoring access to safe water. Marco Skodak, the ERU team leader, details their efforts: "We're launching Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene (WASH) activities in response to the dam's destruction. URCS volunteers are undergoing training to provide assistance, and, working alongside our specialists, they are already on the ground conducting needs assessments and establishing crucial water purification systems and pipelines." By training up the Ukraine Red Cross Society in this way, the IFRC network is ensuring that communities get the long-term assistance they need to recover, and that volunteers have an even greater ability to respond should a similar disaster ever occur in future. -- Click here to learn about how the IFRC is supporting local humanitarian action, including the different types of ERUs we can deploy. And click here to learn more about the IFRC’s work in Water, Sanitation and Hygiene.

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Statement: In response to the Belarus Red Cross Secretary General’s visit to Luhansk and Donetsk and his statements to the media

English The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) has learned from the media that the Secretary General of the Belarus Red Cross recently visited Luhansk and Donetsk. We were not made aware of the visit, nor were we involved in any of the activities, including with children. Actions by any of our member national Red Cross or Red Crescent Societies in contradiction with our humanitarian mission, Fundamental Principles and policies are taken extremely seriously by IFRC. The IFRC has therefore referred this case to the Compliance and Mediation Committee, which, under our constitution, is an independent body investigating and addressing alleged breaches of integrity. The extraordinary circumstances of this visit, including the use of a symbol associated with one of the parties to the international armed conflict in Ukraine, implicate the Fundamental Principles of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement. The visit and the activities associated with it were not coordinated with the other components of the Movement, as required by our internal rules and regulations. These actions risk damaging the trust of our work in supporting communities in need, whoever they are and whichever side of the frontlines they are on. It is essential that all components of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement maintain their independence from governments and weapon bearers. We have contacted the Belarus Red Cross to express our grave concern and to stop any similar activity in the future. It is important to note that the Secretary General of the Belarus Red Cross does not speak on behalf of the IFRC or any other component of the Movement, and his statements do not represent our views. All National Society members of the IFRC are bound by the Fundamental Principles of the Movement, our internal Regulations and policies including the IFRC Protection, Gender, and Inclusion Policy – in which they commit to ensure safeguarding of children. -- Amendment on 21 July 2023 in reaction to coverage of comments made by the Secretary General of Belarus Red Cross on nuclear weapons: Nuclear weapons have catastrophic humanitarian consequences.No nation is prepared to deal with a nuclear confrontation. Their use under any circumstances would be unacceptable in humanitarian, moral and legal terms. The International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement is advocating with governments and the public to reflect in depth on the humanitarian consequences of nuclear weapons and the need for a legally binding commitment to prohibit their use and, in the long term, eliminate them. -- Belarusian Заява ў адказ на візіт Генеральнага сакратара Беларускага Чырвонага Крыжа ў Луганск, Данецк і наваколлі і яго заявы ў СМІ Міжнародная Федэрацыя таварыстваў Чырвонага Крыжа і Чырвонага Паўмесяца (МФТЧКіЧП) даведалася са сродкаў масавай інфармацыі, што Генеральны сакратар Беларускага Чырвонага Крыжа нядаўна наведаў Луганск, Данецк і наваколлі. Мы не былі асвядомлены пра гэты візіт і не ўдзельнічалі ні ў якіх мерапрыемствах, у тым ліку з дзецьмi. МФТЧКіЧП надзвычай сур'ёзна ставiцца да дзеянняў любых нашых чальцоў, нацыянальных таварыстваў Чырвонага Крыжа і Чырвонага Паўмесяца, якія супярэчаць гуманітарнай місіі, Асноўным прынцыпам і палітыкам арганізацыі. Таму МФТЧКіЧП перадала дадзеную справу ў Камітэт па выкананні прававых нормаў і пасярэдніцтве МФТЧКіЧП, які, паводле нашай Канстытуцыі, з'яўляецца незалежным органам, што расследуе і разглядае меркаваныя выпадкі парушэння добрасумленнасці. Надзвычайныя абставіны гэтага візіту, уключаючы выкарыстанне сімвала, які асацыюецца з адным з бакоў міжнароднага ўзброенага канфлікту на тэрыторыі Украіны, кампраметуюць Асноўныя прынцыпы Міжнароднага руху Чырвонага Крыжа і Чырвонага Паўмесяца. Дадзены візіт і звязаныя з ім мерапрыемствы не былі скаардынаваны з іншымі кампанентамі Руху, як таго патрабуюць нашы ўнутраныя правілы і палажэнні. Такія дзеянні могуць падарваць давер да нашай працы па падтрымцы супольнасцяў, што маюць такую патрэбу, кім бы яны ні былі і па які бок фронту яны б ні знаходзіліся. Вельмі важна, каб усе кампаненты Міжнароднага руху Чырвонага Крыжа і Чырвонага Паўмесяца захоўвалі сваю незалежнасць ад дзяржаўных уладаў і носьбітаў зброі. Мы звязаліся з Беларускім Чырвоным Крыжам, каб выказаць сур'ёзную заклапочанасць і прадухіліць любую падобную дзейнасць у будучыні. Важна адзначыць, што Генеральны сакратар Беларускага Чырвонага Крыжа не выступае ад імя МФТЧКіЧП і яго заявы не адлюстроўваюць наш пункт гледжання. Усе нацыянальныя таварыствы – чальцы МФТЧКіЧП абавязаны выконваць Асноўныя прынцыпы Руху, нашы ўнутраныя правілы і палітыкі, уключаючы палітыку МФТЧКіЧП у галiне абароны, гендэрных пытанняў і інклюзіўнасці, у адпаведнасці з якой яны абавязваюцца забяспечваць абарону дзяцей. -- Заява дапоўнена 21 ліпеня 2023 года пасля каментарыяў Генеральнага сакратара Беларускага Чырвонага Крыжа адносна ядзернай зброі: Гуманітарныя наступствы ўжывання ядзернай зброі будуць катастрафічнымі. Ніводная нацыя не справіцца з імі ў выпадку ядзернай канфрантацыі. Выкарыстанне гэтай зброі ні пры якіх абставінах недапушчальна – ні з гуманітарнага, ні з маральнага, ні з прававога пункту гледжання. Міжнародны рух Чырвонага Крыжа і Чырвонага Паўмесяца заклікае дзяржавы і грамадскасць глыбока задумацца аб гуманітарных наступствах ужывання ядзернай зброі і аб неабходнасці ўзяць на сябе юрыдычныя абавязкі па забароне яго выкарыстання, а ў далейшым і па яго знішчэнні. -- Ukrainian Заява у відповідь на візит Генерального секретаря Білоруського Червоного Хреста у Луганськ і Донецьк та його заяви засобам масової інформації Міжнародна Федерація Товариств Червоного Хреста і Червоного Півмісяця дізналася з засобів масової інформації, що Генеральний секретар Білоруського Червоного Хреста нещодавно відвідав Луганськ і Донецьк. Ми не були проінформовані про цей візит і не брали участі у пов‘язаній з ним діяльності, в тому числі у діяльності, що стосується дітей. МФТЧХ і ЧП ставиться надзвичайно серйозно до дій будь-якого з членських Національних Товариств Червоного Хреста або Червоного Півмісяця, що суперечать нашій гуманітарній місії, Фундаментальним принципам та правилам. Відтак, МФТЧХ і ЧП передала цей випадок на розгляд Комітету з Відповідності та Посередництва, який, згідно із нашим статутом, є незалежним органом, що розслідує і розглядає питання порушення добросовісності. Надзвичайні обставини цього візиту, зокрема, використання символу, пов'язаного з однією зі сторін міжнародного збройного конфлікту в Україні, зачіпають Фундаментальні принципи Міжнародного руху Червоного Хреста та Червоного Півмісяця. Візит та пов'язані з ним дії не було узгоджено з іншими компонентами Руху, як того вимагають наші внутрішні правила та регламенти. Ці дії можуть загрожувати довірі до нашої роботи спрямованої на підтримку людей, які потребують допомоги, ким би вони не були і з якої б сторони лінії фронту не перебували. Надзвичайно важливо щоб всі компоненти Міжнародного руху Червоного Хреста та Червоного Півмісяця зберігали незалежність від урядів та збройних формувань. Ми зв'язалися з Білоруським Червоним Хрестом, щоб висловити наше серйозне занепокоєння та закликати припинити будь-яку подібну діяльність у майбутньому. Важливо відзначити, що Генеральний секретар Білоруського Червоного Хреста не виступає від імені МФТЧХ і ЧП або будь-якого іншого компоненту Руху, і його заяви не відображають нашої позиції. Усі Національні Товариства-члени МФТЧХ і ЧП зобов'язані дотримуватися Фундаментальних принципів Руху, наших внутрішніх регламентів та правил, зокрема Політики з Питань Захисту, Гендерної Рівності та Інклюзії МФТЧХ і ЧП, які зобов'язують їх забезпечувати захист дітей. -- Заяву доповнено 21 липня 2023 року, після коментарів Генерального секретаря Білоруського Червоного Хреста щодо ядерної зброї: Використання ядерної зброї має катастрофічні гуманітарні наслідки. Жодна нація не впорається з ними у випадку ядерної конфронтації. Використання такої зброї у будь-яких обставинах є неприйнятним з гуманітарної, моральної і правової точок зору. Міжнародний рух Червоного Хреста і Червоного Півмісяця закликає уряди та громадськість глибоко замислитися про гуманітарні наслідки використання ядерної зброї та необхідність взяти на себе правові зобов'язання щодо заборони використання і, пізніше, щодо ліквідації таких озброєнь. -- Russian Заявлениев ответ на визит Генерального секретаря Белорусского Красного Креста в Луганск, Донецк и окрестности и его заявления в СМИ Международная Федерация обществ Красного Креста и Красного Полумесяца (МФОККиКП) узнала из средств массовой информации, что Генеральный секретарь Белорусского Красного Креста недавно посетил Луганск, Донецк и окрестности.Мы не были осведомлены об этом визите и не участвовали ни в каких мероприятиях, в том числе с детьми. МФОККиКП крайне серьезно подходит к действиямлюбых наших членов, национальных обществ Красного Креста и Красного Полумесяца, противоречащим гуманитарной миссии, Основополагающим принципам и политикам организации. Поэтому МФОККиКП передала данный вопрос в Комитет по соблюдению правовых норм и посредничеству МФОККиКП, который, согласно нашей Конституции, является независимым органом, расследующим и рассматривающим предполагаемые случаи нарушения добросовестности. Чрезвычайные обстоятельства данного визита, включая использование символа, ассоциирующегося с одной из сторон международного вооруженного конфликта на территории Украины, компрометируют Основополагающие принципы Международного движения Красного Креста и Красного Полумесяца. Данный визит и связанные с ним мероприятия не были скоординированы с другими компонентами Движения, как того требуют наши внутренние правила и положения. Такие действия могут подорвать доверие к нашей работе по поддержке нуждающихся сообществ, кем бы они ни были и по какую бы сторону линии фронта они ни находились. Крайне важно, чтобы все компоненты Международного движения Красного Креста и Красного Полумесяца сохраняли свою независимость от государственных властей и носителей оружия. Мы связались с Белорусским Красным Крестом, чтобы выразить серьезную озабоченность и предотвратить любую подобную деятельность в будущем. Важно отметить, что Генеральный секретарь Белорусского Красного Креста не выступает от имени МФОККиКП и его заявления не отражают нашу точку зрения. Все национальные общества - члены МФОККиКП обязаны соблюдать Основополагающие принципы Движения, наши внутренние правила и политики, включая Политику МФОККиКП по защите, гендерным вопросам и инклюзивности, в соответствии с которой они обязуются обеспечивать защиту детей. -- Заявление дополнено 21 июля 2023 года после комментариев, сделанных Генеральным секретарем Белорусского Красного Креста относительно ядерного оружия: Гуманитарные последствия применения ядерного оружия будут катастрофическими. Ни одна нация не справится с ними в случае ядерной конфронтации. Использование этого оружия при каких бы то ни было обстоятельствах недопустимо - ни с гуманитарной, ни с нравственной, ни с правовой точки зрения. Международное движение Красного Креста и Красного Полумесяца призывает государства и общественность задуматься о гуманитарных последствиях применения ядерного оружия и необходимости взять на себя юридические обязательства по запрету на его использование, а в дальнейшем и по его уничтожению. --

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Red Cross ramps up efforts as water-borne diseases threaten south of Ukraine

Kiev / Ukraine, 27 June 2023 – Water-borne diseases are a growing threat for people affected by flooding from the Nova Kakhovka Dam collapse earlier this month. This threat poses a significant challenge in an already complex and volatile situation. The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) network with the Ukrainian Red Cross Society continue to scale up to help tackle the new risk. Since day one, the Ukrainian Red Cross mobilised in the Kherson region to help affected communities. Despite being under fire, teams continued to help people evacuate safely and provide first aid along with other relief items. Oleksandr Babenko, Head of the Ukraine Red Cross Health department says: “From the early hours of the emergency situation, the Ukraine Red Cross is responding to the humanitarian challenges to assist the affected population. We are closely cooperating with local authorities to provide timely and effective support. We pay particular attention to informing people about preventing the spread of infectious diseases, especially through drinking water, in the territories of the Kherson, Zaporizhia, Odesa, Dnipropetrovsk, and Mykolaiv regions.” The Ukraine Red Cross with the IFRC network are helping communities access a reliable clean water supply and adequate hygiene and sanitation. Red Cross teams continue to provide affected communities with relief items as well as mental health and psychosocial support. “Ensuring access to clean water is now a critical priority in a region that is already facing so many challenges. Time is of the essence to get ahead of the spread of diseases so we all have to work together,” says Jaime Wah, IFRC Health Coordinator. “No one can do this alone. On top of financial and technical support provided to Ukraine Red Cross already, we are ramping up resources so we can offer access to clean water and provide for the needs moving forward in recovery.” For more information or to request an interview, please contact: [email protected]

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Nova Kakhovka dam collapse, Ukraine: How we're supporting people affected by flooding

The collapse of the Nova Kakhovka Dam in southern Ukraine on June 6 has resulted in a devastating flood, impacting numerous communities. People have already suffered the devastating impacts of the conflict and are now displaced from their homes; many have lost their houses and belongings with the flood waters. The health risks for affected people could increase in the coming weeks and there is a need for clean drinking water. The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) network is working alongside the Ukrainian Red Cross Society to provide vital assistance to people who have been affected. Addressing immediate humanitarian needs Recognizing the urgency of the situation, the IFRC, together with its membership, is actively supporting the Ukrainian Red Cross Society in their response efforts. This includes operational, technical, and financial assistance to bolster its local capacity to deliver aid, distribute relief items, provide health support, promote good sanitation and hygiene practices, and address the immediate needs of the affected population. Long-term recovery and rehabilitation In addition to immediate relief efforts, the IFRC network remains committed to supporting communities affected by the flooding in their long-term recovery and rehabilitation. This includes facilitating projects to restore people’s livelihoods, provide psychosocial support, and rehabilitate damaged infrastructure to help communities rebuild their lives. In the aftermath of the Nova Kakhovka Dam collapse, the IFRC network and Ukrainian Red Cross Society stand united in providing unwavering support to affected communities. Since February 2022, the IFRC has scaled up its response with the Ukrainian Red Cross, together with National Societies from around the world. Together, we provide urgent humanitarian assistance to people in Ukraine and those who have been forced to flee to other countries. Together, we are working tirelessly to address immediate needs, offer hope, and pave the way for long-term recovery. With the power of compassion and solidarity, we are committed to rebuilding lives and restoring resilience in the face of this devastating event. -- Click here for more information about our work supporting people in Ukraine.

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Addressing the needs of people affected by the conflict in Ukraine

This week, it will be 11,000 hours since the conflict in Ukraine escalated. For the people affected, those are 11,000 hours of fear, worry, and uncertainty: how to keep your family safe, if you can get help from a doctor, if you can pay the rent, or what tomorrow will bring. More than one year in, millions of people are still directly affected by the conflict, inside and outside Ukraine. And hour by hour, their needs are growing and changing. To continue responding to these needs, the IFRC is calling on significant new investment to ensure we can address this. Now is not the time to scale back. Many people inside Ukraine have limited access to the most basic of needs, such as water, energy, and medical care. Every day, they face uncertainty: When can I go home? Will we be able to pay the rent this month? Where can we go if one of us gets sick? And then there are the millions of people staying outside of the country, throughout Europe. Every day, they are also living in uncertainty. They are staying in a country where they might not speak the language, not knowing what the future holds, worried about loved ones at home. To ensure we provide the right support, we are constantly monitoring what the needs are. Today, I want to share our most recent and worrying findings. People displaced inside Ukraine are struggling with the lack of income and increased stress levels. We have seen deteriorating mental health conditions during our psychosocial support activities. Many people outside of Ukraine are struggling financially. They have used up all their savings, a lot of them now have mounting debts. In many countries, The IFRC network is providing cash assistance to people in need. Many people use this for food and rent. 41% of the people receiving this support depend on us to cover their basic needs. But of course, this is not a long term, sustainable solution. This is why we are helping people connect to services in country. The language barrier makes it hard for people to participate in daily life. It can make it harder to go to school, get a job and access healthcare. Yesterday, I came back from Moldova – there I saw what we see in many countries: this conflict has taken an immense toll on people's mental health. Families are broken and people worry and suffer from trauma, which makes psychosocial support vital. Since the beginning of the conflict, the IFRC network has been supporting millions of people suffering from the consequences of the international armed conflict in more than 54 countries. For example, we have reached almost 17 million people with relief items for basic needs, such as food, water and blankets. We have also been supporting millions of people with shelter, medical support, and mental health support. And we are providing cash assistance for people both inside and outside of Ukraine, to empower people to buy what they need. The IFRC has extended its humanitarian aid operation until at least the end of 2025 and expanded our emergency appeal for Ukraine and surrounding countries to include 18 countries on the European continent. To make sure we can continue to support those in need, we have revised our Emergency Appeal from 550 million Swiss francs to 800 million Swiss francs. Regrettably, every hour, we continue to see people suffering from the conflict. As the Red Cross and Red Crescent network, we will continue to support them. Within Ukraine, and many countries in Europe. We hope you will be with us, as we cannot do it alone.

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Polish Red Cross Infoline offers care and support to people fleeing Ukraine

“Yesterday I was told I’m an angel. That’s why it’s worth doing this job.” Alla Karapeichyk is a psychologist from Ukraine working at the Information Line of the Polish Red Cross, providing mental health and psychosocial support to people who call in. Most of her callers are people from Ukraine who have not yet been able to adapt to their new circumstances. Many of them expected to come to Poland just for a couple of weeks or months, but now they’ve been away from home for over a year. They feel confused about their next steps in life and are looking for some guidance. “By the time someone calls the Infoline, they already have a kind of solution in their mind for the problem. A well-timed, smart question from a mental health professional can help that solution take shape,” Alla explains. Christina from Kyiv is also a member of the team of seven operators at the Polish Red Cross Infoline. With her colleagues, she responds to an average of 300 calls per week, providing referrals to medical and public administration services. “Sometimes people who call are so stressed that they cannot stop crying. We’ve been trained to talk to them in a way that helps reduce their stress. When they receive the information they need, they can finally relax,” says Christina. “I’m also far from home, so I feel the same way as the people who are calling us. I can absolutely understand their problems, and I’m glad to be able to help.” Both Alla and Christina have received training in Psychological First Aid thanks to the EU4Health project supported by the European Union, so that they can better respond to the psychological needs of people impacted by the armed conflict. “Just as many other things in life, the situation in Ukraine is beyond our control. What we can change is our behaviour – we can influence our environment and have an impact on the people around us,” concludes Alla. -- If you left Ukraine because of the current conflict and need support, you can contact the Polish Red Cross Infoline on +48 800 088 136 (from within Poland) or +48 221 520 620 (from abroad). The Infoline is open Monday to Friday from 09:00 to 17:00 CET. About the EU4Health programme: National Red Cross Societies in Ukraine and 24 European Union (EU) / European Economic Area (EAA) countries joined forces to offer mental health and psychosocial support services to hundreds of thousands of people from Ukraine. Funded by the European Union and with technical assistance from the IFRC and the IFRC Psychosocial Centre, the project connects vulnerable people with mental health professionals and volunteers from the National Societies. -- This article was produced with the financial support of the European Union. Its contents are the sole responsibility of the IFRC and do not necessarily reflect the views of the European Union.

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Ukraine one year on: seven things to know about the ongoing humanitarian crisis

1. Millions of refugees are still adjusting to life in a new country Since 24 February 2022, more than 8 million people have fled Ukraine to seek safety abroad. Forced to leave everything behind, and unable to safely return to their homes, they’re still trying to adapt to their new “normality”. That’s one year of fear, sorrow, uncertainty, separation from friends and family, and worrying about the people and homes left behind. For the past 12 months, the IFRC, along with 58 Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, has been working in Ukraine and the wider region to provide essential aid to people fleeing the country—including women, children, older people, and people with disabilities—and to help them integrate in their new communities. 2. Millions of internally displaced persons (IDPs) in Ukraine are still in need of basic assistance The displacement of more than 5.3 million people within Ukraine remains a staggering humanitarian crisis. Many of these people fled their homes with only the clothes they were wearing and are still staying with relatives or host families, in collective shelters or rented apartments. Working together with the Ukrainian Red Cross Society, the IFRC network has been there from the very beginning, providing crucial relief items to those who need them. While the initial shock of displacement may have subsided, the need for ongoing support and assistance remains critical. 3. Some people have returned to their homes, but rebuilding their former lives is a daunting challenge Despite ongoing hostilities, more than 5.5 million people have chosen to return to their homes—whether from abroad or within Ukraine. Many of their houses, however, have been damaged or destroyed. The cost of rebuilding or repairing them can be prohibitively expensive, and many families simply cannot afford the materials or labour needed to make their homes habitable again. Members of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement are providing vital support to people in Ukraine, including assistance with rent and utility payments, refurbishment of collective centres hosting IDPs and of individual housing, and providing building materials for home restoration. However, many people, particularly those in frontline areas, are still suffering. 4. The significant toll on people’s mental health remains The ongoing conflict has had a devastating impact on the mental well-being of people inside and outside of the country. Many have lost loved ones, homes and livelihoods. People—including children—have been uprooted from their communities. The long-term uncertainty and instability are weighing heavy on so many people’s minds. The International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement has provided psychosocial support to more than 328,000 people this past year. While this is a significant achievement, there are still so many more people who need a listening ear and professional support for their mental health. 5. For many, access to medical services is limited The World Health Organization (WHO) has reported more than 700 attacks targeting health facilities in Ukraine since February 2022. Many hospitals and medical facilities have been either destroyed or severely damaged, leaving people—especially those living near the front lines—with little or no access to medical services when they need it most. The International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement continues to provide basic medicines and medical equipment to health facilities across Ukraine. Together, we’ve launched nearly 100 mobile medical units, providing vital medical care to people living in hard-to-reach areas throughout the country. The IFRC is funding a health centre in the city of Uzhhorod, run by the Ukrainian Red Cross, which provides essential healthcare services to vulnerable people and IDPs. And funding from our Emergency Appeal is also helping the Ukrainian Red Cross to provide home-based care and rehabilitation services to older people, those with disabilities, and wounded veterans. 6. The country's energy infrastructure has been severely damaged While the cold season has now ended, and the energy provision within Ukraine somewhat restored, social and health institutions across Ukraine continue to face the threat of recurrent power shortages. These facilities, particularly those in frontline areas, often suffer from electricity cuts, depriving the local population of basic services. The IFRC has already delivered 130 high-power generators to Ukraine over the course of the last winter. However, the country still needs further support to ensure the basic delivery of public services for millions of people affected by the conflict. 7. The country's economy has been severely affected In 2022, Ukraine experienced a staggering 35% decrease in GDP and a shocking 30% annual inflation rate. This means that families across the country are struggling with skyrocketing food and rent costs. For many households, savings have been all but depleted, leaving people in a state of financial hardship and uncertainty. National Societies in Ukraine and the surrounding region, supported by the IFRC, have been running several cash assistance programmes to help the most vulnerable get by. The crisis is ongoing: what comes next? Though this crisis has slipped from the headlines, the world cannot forget what’s happening in Ukraine. This past year, our Movement has worked tirelessly to support people affected in Ukraine and beyond. But despite our efforts, the scale of this crisis demands more, and continued, support and attention. Thanks to its auxiliary role and permanent presence in Ukraine, the Ukrainian Red Cross is best positioned to support affected people now and long into the future. The IFRC network will continue to support the Ukrainian Red Cross and the people affected, as long they need us. -- Click here to access the IFRC’s recently revised emergency appeal for Ukraine and impacted countries. And if you would like to support our life-saving work, please donate to our appeal here.

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Giving the gift of light: Donated generators provide vital electricity to hospital teams in Ukraine

"How can a person feel when they used to have everything? I had a home, a stable job, and relatives. Now, I call myself an elderly homeless person. I no longer have a place to live. Only a crater from an aviation bomb remains where my house used to be. How can I feel?” Ihor Manohin spent his entire life in Bakhmut, Donetsk oblast. There, he had a place to call home, his family, and his livelihood. Ihor worked as Head of the X-Ray Department at the local Bakhmut hospital. For many years, life was normal. Life was peaceful. But since the international armed conflict escalated in Ukraine in February 2022, Ihor has had to work in a situation of increasing violence and danger. “The X-Ray Department kept running until August 9th. Our team was working around the clock, providing medical care to around 300 people injured by the conflict every day. But after weeks without electricity, and due to the constant shelling, we had to leave the city. It simply became impossible to leave my house to get to work,” he recalls. Many of the Bakhmut hospital medical staff evacuated on August 9th, along with the hospital's equipment, to the city of Brovary in Kyiv oblast. Though heartbroken at having to leave Bakhmut, Ihor and his team remained committed to providing life-saving medical care to the wounded. In their new location, they continued to provide medical assistance to fellow displaced citizens who had lost everything. But the challenges continued in Brovary. Ongoing attacks on infrastructure regularly left Ihor and his team without power, hampering their vital work. Recognising the urgent need for support, the IFRC, together with the Ukrainian Red Cross Society, donated a high-power generator to Ihor and his team in their relocated hospital. The generator provides a reliable source of electricity, heating and light, enabling them to continue their life-saving work supporting the local population and those fleeing the conflict. The generator handed over to Ihor’s team is one of 150 delivered to Ukraine by the IFRC as part of a programme to support the country’s vulnerable population during the cold season. Another 30 generators are soon to be delivered. Speaking about the programme, Jaime Wah, IFRC Health Coordinator in Ukraine, said: “At the end of the day, it's about people. Our commitment to delivering high-power generators to Ukraine is not just about powering equipment, it's about ensuring uninterrupted access to life-saving medical care for those who need it the most. We are honoured to support Ukraine's most vulnerable communities in their time of need”. -- These generators are just one part of our response in Ukraine and surrounding countries. One year on from the escalation of conflict, the devastation continues to affect every aspect of people's lives. The IFRC continues to support the Ukrainian Red Cross, and other National Societies in the region, who are standing side-by-side with communities, providing crucial and long-term humanitarian aid to meet a wide range of needs. Read more here. Ihor’s story is sadly shared by so many people in Ukraine, including many Ukrainian Red Cross volunteers. But despite everything, they have found the strength to help their communities in the most difficult of times. We will be there for people like Ihor, as long as they need us.

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| Press release

Ukraine: IFRC warns of psychological wounds adding cruel layer of pain one year on

Geneva / Budapest / Kyiv 23 February 2023 -The psychological wounds of the international armed conflict in Ukraine are adding another cruel layer of pain to people already struggling to cope with shelter, hunger, and livelihoods needs, warns the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC). As the effects of the last year continue to impact families, the IFRC network is running the biggest humanitarian response in its history. With a CHF 1.6 billion appeal spanning 58 countries, the IFRC network has reached more than two million people with medical care, mental health support and shelter; and so far has distributed more than CHF 87 million in cash assistance to bring choice and dignity to families who have lost everything. A total of 42 IFRC member National Societies are engaged in activities supporting people from Ukraine, domestically. IFRC Secretary General, Jagan Chapagain, said: “This grueling year has devastated the lives of millions of people and that brings with it psychological harm as significant as physical injury. We are preparing to expand our mental health interventions alongside cash, shelter, medical care and urgent assistance to help people manage the harsh winter with power cuts and water shortages.” Red Cross and Red Crescent teams are working everywhere—from bomb shelters in Bakhmut to refugees’ new homes across borders—and have provided more than a million people with psychosocial support since February 2022. As time marches on, more must be done to address mental health. “Trauma knows no borders: those in Ukraine and those who have fled are equally in need of comfort, stability, and a sense of normalcy,” remarked Mr. Chapagain. The Ukrainian Red Cross has provided psychosocial support to hundreds of thousands of people since the start of the conflict’s escalation. An additional 34 IFRC member National Societies are delivering specialist help to hundreds of thousands who have sought safety in other countries. Ukrainian Red Cross Director General, Maksym Dotsenko, said: “They have lost loved ones, homes, jobs, everything—this is devastating enough. People’s lives are in limbo and this anguish is eating them up inside, compounding the mental health crisis even further. “Helping families find coping mechanisms, treatment and support is crucial for us. We are training people on how to respond to mental health emergencies and this training is happening in bomb shelters and basements.” In neighbouring countries, IFRC member National Societies are receiving a growing number of pleas for mental health help via their community feedback systems. “We are a long way away from recovery for people from Ukraine, but ensuring support for mental health, alongside cash support, protection and other basic services is a way we can contribute to that eventual recovery,” said Mr. Chapagain. Over the past year, the IFRC network has mobilized more than 124,000 volunteers to respond to urgent needs of people affected by this international armed conflict. For more information, please contact: [email protected] In Kyiv: Nichola Jones, +44 7715 459956 In Budapest: Corrie Butler, +36 70 430 6506 In Geneva: Jenelle Eli, +1 202 603 6803 A/V materials available to media on the IFRC Newsroom. Note to editors: In a regional initiative to meet the massive need for mental health support, National Red Cross Societies in Ukraine and 24 countries across the EU/EEA have joined forces to provide mental health and psychosocial support services to more than 590,000 people over the course of three years. Target audiences include displaced people in Ukraine and impacted EU countries, caregivers, children, older persons, people with disabilities, host communities, as well as Red Cross volunteers and staff. Funded by the European Union and with technical assistance from the IFRC and the IFRC Psychosocial Centre, the EU4Health project connects vulnerable people with mental health professionals and volunteers from the 25 National Societies.

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| Speech

IFRC Statement at the International Conference on Ukraine’s Civilian Resilience

The IFRC welcomes the Governments of France and Ukraine’s joint platform for civilian resilience. The IFRC is proud of its global, Federation-wide response to this international armed conflict, which includes critical shelter, protection, health services, and cash assistance by 42 National Societies in 30 countries to assist millions of people in Ukraine, and those fleeing to other countries. In Ukraine, the IFRC is working closely with the Ukrainian Red Cross Society (URCS) and other Movement partners to ensure that our response is coordinated and coherent to deliver locally led, humanitarian assistance as long as it is needed. To date, the Ukraine Red Cross has faced the highest demands for its services with 220 local branches and more than 8000 volunteers operating across the country. The Ukrainian Red Cross has a unique mandate and role under the Geneva Conventions during situations of armed conflict to be at the center, as auxiliary to their government in humanitarian assistance. The IFRC continues to leverage its network and provide direct support to the Ukraine Red Cross Society to deliver humanitarian assistance and build resilience of communities impacted by this crisis, especially as the cold winter has already arrived. The IFRC calls for greater investment and focused engagement from donors to support communities impacted by this international armed conflict, and beyond. Thank you.

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Healing the invisible scars of the Ukraine conflict: IFRC and European Union launch mental health project

According to the WHO, one in five people are affected by mental health disorders in post-conflict settings. If left without treatment and adequate support, people from Ukraine face long-lasting effects that could harm themselves, their families and communities. “Wounds of war are deep, sometimes too deep to manage alone,” says Nataliia Korniienko, Mental Health and Psychosocial Support delegate with the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC). As a Ukrainian herself who had to leave the country when the escalation began, she understands firsthand the stress faced by those fleeing conflict. “People are craving for someone to take the time to sit alongside them in their pain, but this often lacking for many fleeing Ukraine right now.” In a regional initiative to meet this massive need, National Red Cross Societies in Ukraine and 24 EU/EAA countries have joined forces to offer mental health and psychosocial support services to hundreds of thousands of people from Ukraine. Funded by the European Union, and with technical assistance from the IFRC and the IFRC Psychosocial Centre, the project connects vulnerable people with mental health professionals and volunteers from the National Societies. Support is offered in Ukrainian and other languages through various platforms, including helplines, mobile outreach and in-person group activities. Materials on psychosocial support in several languages are also going to be distributed among mental health professionals and the public. Since the first days of the conflict, Red Cross Red Crescent staff and volunteers have been assisting people at border crossing points, train stations and temporary shelters – listening and demonstrating empathy, sharing life-saving information, and taking care of vulnerable people. Aneta Trgachevska, acting Head of Health and Care at IFRC Europe, said: “We try to reach everyone in need in a convenient, personalized way. Assistance will not be limited to just a couple of calls or meetings—a person will receive support as long as we are needed. This kind of early response can alleviate symptoms and prevent people from developing serious levels of distress or even mental health conditions.” -- The content of this article is the sole responsibility of IFRC and does not necessarily reflect the views of the European Union.

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Ukraine crisis: Red Cross health centre in Uzhhorod offers relief and comfort

Like many cities in the western part of Ukraine, the health system in Uzhhorod has been overwhelmed. Located near the border with Hungary and Slovakia, the city’s population has increased dramatically with tens of thousands of people seeking refuge. To help meet the growing medical needs of the new arrivals and relieve some of the pressure on local medical facilities, the Ukrainian Red Cross opened a temporary Health Centre in Uzhhorod with the support of IFRC and the Finnish Red Cross. The centre offers consultation, treatment and medication free of charge for people in need. It’s open to everyone, local community members and internally displaced people alike. Medical specialists are assisting people of all ages with their health issues. There’s an on-site pharmacist prescribing medications and a psychologist available for consultation and psychosocial support. "Medications for the heart and blood pressure are the ones prescribed most often. People lived through stressful situations, and it affects their health,” explains pharmacist Olesya Verbovska, who works there with her twin sister Oksana. "People had to leave their homes in a hurry, so they couldn’t bring their regular medication with them. They’re grateful that the Red Cross provides medicine free of charge.” Many patients come from temporary shelters. One of them is 72-year-old Oleksandr Ivanovich from Luhansk who’s staying at the local school. He came to the Health Centre for a blood test and ultrasound. "The only thing I can say is thank you – I’m grateful to everyone who cares for us.” 17-year-old Daryna from Donetsk visited the Red Cross Health Centre with her mother, grandparents and younger brother. Her family members are experiencing many health problems, including allergies and stomach pains. They heard about the health centre from other displaced people in town. "It’s great to have a hospital like this that helps people like us,” Daryna said. Some of the doctors and volunteers working at the Health Centre have also been affected by the conflict, like Dr. Nataliia Vasylivna, a family doctor from Donetsk. "When patients are withdrawn, I tell them that I’m a displaced person just like them. This helps them relax and connect with me. After that, they speak more openly about their problems,” she said. She’s seeing between 15 to 20 patients a day. Some of the most common conditions she is treating are heart diseases, high blood pressure and allergic reactions. "Many patients are also showing signs of chronic stress and start crying as soon as they feel the sympathy from me,” she adds. The health centre also provides psychosocial support six days a week, for adults and children alike. And two volunteers who are doing that can also relate to what patients are experiencing. Daria from Odesa and Ostap from Kyiv both came to Uzhhorod fleeing from the conflict, and started volunteering for the Red Cross there. While helping people deal with their challenges, they got to know each other and have been a couple since May. "We are never bored when we volunteer together. Working with kids can be difficult sometimes, but Ostap is always there to help me,” Daria said. "Daria is an extraordinary person, I have never met anyone like her. We both have a strong urge to help others, and it’s much easier to do with someone you love,” said Ostap.

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| Press release

Ukraine: Six months in, IFRC warns of ripple effects and mounting humanitarian needs

Geneva/Budapest/Kyiv, 23 August 2022 – Six months into the escalation of conflict in Ukraine, humanitarian needs in and outside the country continue to grow. With the entire humanitarian system stretched, the conflict could have lasting impacts on the capacity of organizations and their donors to respond in Ukraine and to emergencies elsewhere. The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), the Ukrainian Red Cross and 46 other Red Cross Red Crescent National Societies continue to scale up one of their largest responses in history to meet the humanitarian needs. IFRC President Francesco Rocca says: “People are at a critical breaking point. The human cost continues to mount, and the suffering has been unimaginable for millions. The devastating knock-on effects are only growing as the conflict drags on with rising food and fuel prices and worsening food crises. IFRC is continuing to scale up with the humanitarian need, but we cannot do it alone.” In Ukraine and neighbouring countries, inflation, and shortages of essential products, such as fuel and food, impact the ability of people to afford basic supplies. The imminent arrival of colder weather in the weeks to come will bring additional humanitarian needs. While we have seen an incredible outpouring of generosity, these economic strains can affect how much host communities are able to assist people who have fled from conflict. On top of this, people who have fled are stuck between starting over or going back to uncertainty and potentially danger. The conflict continues to have far-reaching consequences. The cost of food has gone up around the world. Ukraine is one of the world's biggest grain exporters. The country’s grain exports are down 46 per cent so far this year. This massive drop is having a major impact on the Greater Horn of Africa where more than 80 million are experiencing extreme hunger, the worst food crisis in the last 70 years. As millions of people have been displaced, more than 100,000 local Red Cross volunteers and staff have rapidly mobilized in Ukraine, in bordering countries – Poland, Slovakia, Hungary, Romania, Moldova, Russia and Belarus – and in 17 additional countries in the region. Ukrainian Red Cross Director, General Maksym Dotsenko, says: “People have had to leave everything behind and escape with their lives, many are living and planning day-by-day. With winter around the corner, we know that this will only become increasingly difficult for people who need the basics to survive – a warm place to live, food, goods, and services.” “Our staff and volunteers continue to work around the clock to support people, even when many worry about their own families and their safety. Yet they continue to put on the Red Cross vest to deliver critical aid to those who need it. We are focused on being adaptable, flexible, and responsive to whatever happens next.” Much about the future of the humanitarian crisis in Ukraine remains unknown. Even if the conflict were to end tomorrow, it will take years to repair the damage to cities and homes and the impact on families. This outlook requires humanitarian organizations, governments, and donors to commit for the long term. New sources of funding and resources will have to be found outside of humanitarian budgets. Guided by impartiality, the IFRC, along with other members of National Red Cross Red Crescent Societies, will continue scaling up, providing essential humanitarian aid; cash and voucher assistance; healthcare, including mental health support, first aid and medical supplies and care; and water and sanitation. Note to editors: We have experts available to provide the latest information from different countries and audio-visuals for use by the media. For more information and to arrange an interview please contact: In Budapest: Guy Lepage, +1 (365) 885-3155 (WhatsApp) | +36 204597933 | [email protected] In Geneva: Jenelle Eli, +1 202-603-6803 |[email protected]

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"He called them hope plants": Supporting people's mental health in the Ukraine crisis

A simple search for “Kharkiv” on the internet today yields scenes of grey ash covering splintered buildings. This is how much of the world now sees Ukraine. Far from this perception are locals’ memories of crackling fireplaces and walks under the trees—so many of which now stand lifeless. But at least one small clump of spring green remains—a few little plants in one Kharkiv resident’s back yard. The only ones to survive raining missiles in a garden once lush and vibrant. “He called them hope plants,” says Ana Blanco, one of 20 emergency responders from the Spanish Red Cross working in Zahony, Hungary. “He and his wife arrived at Zahony train station with two of them, having travelled all this way from Kharkiv. And every day I’d see them take such great care and pride ensuring they stayed alive on the windowsill of the shelter.” For this man, these plants are his token of home. And while they may not be the most practical thing to carry with him on his journey, Ana understands they are vitally important to his mental wellbeing. Having been an emergency responder with the IFRC since 2011, Ana knows that survivors of disasters and conflicts can be resilient. She’s seen it with her own eyes while providing emergency relief in Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria, and water and sanitation support after the 2015 Nepal earthquake. But this doesn’t mean hope always flourishes on its own. That’s what brought Ana from her home in Valencia to Zahony—her experience teaching her that supporting the mental health of people affected by disaster or conflict is just as important as supporting their physical health. She came with 20 fellow health specialists from the Spanish Red Cross to work alongside the Hungarian Red Cross, ensuring their teams have what they need to meet people’s immediate mental and physical health needs. And to help set up a health clinic in Zahony so they can provide effective longer-term support too. This is not Ana’s first time supporting refugees. Twice, she has worked in camps in Greece helping refugees express their emotions through art therapy. Her eyes light up as she speaks, “It was remarkable. Even though there was a huge language barrier, we relied on universal ways of communicating.” Whether it’s through creating art, or delicately tending to small plants on a windowsill—everyone has something to say, because everyone has something to feel. And these feelings need somewhere to go. “I grew up in a family that has always helped people. I feel something is missing in me when I see a crisis and I can’t go – if I’m not available to respond. It’s an earthquake inside of me,” Ana explains. It’s this innate desire to help others, to be kind to others—shared by so many millions of our Red Cross and Red Crescent family—that has motivated Ana during her time in Hungary. For many weeks she’s worked patiently to get to know so many of the people staying in Zahony and build trust with them, helping them to open up. Speaking about another man she met early on who would sit alone on a bunk bed in the corner of the shelter, Ana says: “He didn’t want to go outside when I first met him. He’d been traveling alone, the possibility of reaching a friend abroad growing scarce.” “Every so often, I’d say to him, ‘hope to see you at the train station!’ ‘Hope to see you around for a meal soon!’” And within a few days, she saw him emerge from the dark and step outside, interacting with her and the others. On her last day in Zahony, Ana goes out of her way to help connect him with a helper on the other end of the phone. She finishes her mission knowing that for millions, home now looks very different to the one they once had. Many do not know where their journeys will end. Ana holds a truth that so many disaster responders keep close to their hearts: we can never guarantee someone will be okay or that everyone will make it.But we do whatever we can to nurture seeds of hope, so that one day the lives of people affected by crises such as that in Ukraine can fully bloom again. -- Click here to learn more about the IFRC's Emergency Appeal for Ukraine and impacted countries.If you would like to donate to support our work responding to this crisis, please click here. You can also visit our mental health page to learn more about the IFRC's work providing mental health and psychosocial support around the world.

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| Press release

Preventing a second crisis: Health needs extend beyond Ukraine’s borders warns IFRC

Budapest, 9 June 2022 – A crisis is emerging in the shadow of conflict across Ukraine: one that extends beyond the country’s borders. Ukraine’s already stressed healthcare system is buckling under the weight of expectation and medical needs as people continue fleeing conflict areas seeking safety. The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) is working around the clock to address needs far greater than what’s visible to the eye. “We know it’s possible to prevent a secondary crisis, but no one organization or entity can do it alone,” said Xavier Castellanos Mosquera, IFRC Under Secretary General. More than 290 health care facilities and counting across Ukraine have been damaged or destroyed during the conflict according to the World Health Organization (WHO). More than 1.4 million people are without running water across eastern Ukraine, while UNOCHA reports an additional 4.6 million people in the country at risk for losing access to running water -- a growing risk of water-borne diseases such as acute watery diarrhea. Lack of electricity makes it impossible for water treatment and sanitation efforts to be effective. Health systems in immediate neighbouring countries, including Romania, Belarus, Hungary and Moldova, were already stretched prior to the conflict due to COVID-19. While each country is providing health support to an increased number of people, this can divert valuable health resources away from the people who are still recovering from impacts of COVID-19. The sheer volume of current and future health needs as the conflict continues requires additional resources. “The lack of medical supplies, health care staff and critical infrastructure grow day by day,” said Nick Prince, IFRC Emergency Health delegate. “The millions who have migrated to the western area of Ukraine and eastern European countries are at an elevated risk of infectious diseases given the overcrowded living conditions, limited access to shelter, nutritional stress and exposure to the elements.” On top of these factors, people on the move are forced to delay treatment for existing chronic diseases such as hypertension, diabetes and cancer and, in the absence of vaccinations to meet safe thresholds – including for COVID-19, there is the very strong likelihood of the re-emergence of vaccine preventable diseases. Ukraine also has some of the highest burden of chronic infectious diseases in Europe, particularly HIV and Tuberculosis – a massive risk not only for displaced people themselves, but also for Ukraine’s health care system once they return. “The Red Cross calls on governments and the international community to provide funds for inclusive access to health services and vaccines, testing and treatment, clean water and mental health and psychological support in the long-term,” said Castellanos Mosquera. In Uzhhorod, Ukraine -- where roughly 100,000 people from conflict-torn areas have fled, doubling the city’s population -- a Red Cross health center will open this month to treat both urgent and primary care needs free of charge to all patients. It’s the first of its kind in the area. In collaboration with local authorities, the clinic aims to serve people in need for years to come. The Ukrainian Red Cross has nearly a dozen mobile health teams in the country with more on the way and is providing mental health and psychosocial support to people who have been forced to flee. In addition, food, baby supplies and hygiene items are available to anyone in need. In Moldova, Red Cross teams are preparing to install more handwashing stations and continue to distribute hygiene kits. Access to clean water– the number one prevention mechanism for disease prevention – remains a priority. Red Cross volunteers across eastern Europe are also integrating with teams distributing emergency cash to people who have fled Ukraine to ensure they have access to critical health resources and information. In Hungary, the Hungarian Red Cross, supported by the Spanish Red Cross has set up health posts at the border crossings to provide first aid, primary health care, mental health support and emergency relief to people arriving by train from Chop, Ukraine. For more information or to arrange an interview, contact: In Budapest: Katie Wilkes, +1 312 952 2270, [email protected] Merlijn Stoffels, +31 65 491 8481, [email protected]

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100 Days of Crisis: Fleeing Home, Returning to Joy

We had already packed our passports in the bag. Living in Kyiv, we were already witnessing tension in the air and watching the news of what was happening near the border of Ukraine. We had accepted we would probably need to seek safety outside the house at some point. But that night came so much sooner than we expected. Loud bangs and flashes through the window startled us awake, crisis landing at our doorstep. My seven-year-old daughter and I traveled to our relatives’ home just a few hours away. It was anything but an easy decision to leave our cozy, familiar home on the edge of the city next to the woods where we loved to walk on the weekends. We were so happy there, but we knew it was no longer safe for us to stay. The journey was surreal. Music on the car radio was playing as if nothing was happening, yet all around us were sounds of war. And no sooner than when we arrived at our family’s home, we realized it was yet again too dangerous to stay. Over the next several days, we continued moving from place to place moving toward the western part of Ukraine, expecting the conflict to follow us. The upheaval took a toll quickly, especially on my daughter. I am a professional psychologist by training, so I knew exactly what to look out for to identify those signs of severe stress. Several times a night, we woke up to the sound of air sirens and alarms. She refused to sleep in her pajamas and instead insisted to sleep in winter clothes. She did not sleep at all, really. For fear of having to get back up and seek safety. She was scared all the time, her toy bear providing only so much comfort. That was when I knew we needed to leave the country. We knew a few people in Poland, also from Ukraine, who had been helped by the welcoming Polish community. They had gone above and beyond to help shelter families fleeing Ukraine. Everything about my life was turned upside-down overnight. Even the familiarity with my profession as a humanitarian worker and psychologist for the International Committee of the Red Cross, (ICRC). There, my job was to support families of missing persons in Ukraine. But when the conflict started, we all switched gears, fully focused on the emergency in front of us. I was one of the original staff members who trained Red Cross volunteers in providing psychosocial first aid to people in distress. Ukrainian Red Cross volunteers put so much effort from the very beginning of the crisis into helping people in need. I also taught them how to recognize if they needed to seek help for themselves. And now, it seemed we all needed that. Having worked with the Red Cross for years, I tried to do my best to support them in their lifesaving work using my skills. Together with my ICRC team, we created hotlines for people who needed psychological help – the same support I needed myself. Crossing the border to Poland, we were welcomed by kind volunteers just as we were when we were on the way in Ukraine. Volunteers provided us food, and toys for my daughter-simple acts that made me feel so much better. This, I noticed, seemed to be a turning point for my daughter, and soon she was back to sleeping and playing with the other kids. Not long after we arrived in Poland, I was at the bank when a woman also from Ukraine heard my voice – the same language she spoke and started sharing her own story with me. She started to cry. That was when I knew she needed me to listen. She wanted to share her story with someone who would take the time to sit alongside her in her pain. It’s what so many people crave, often lacking words to express it. It became clear to me that this was a way I could contribute using my skills, especially now that I had more capacity to care for others while feeling safe myself. I reached out to my colleagues at the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) and am now helping to lead a program in countries neighbouring Ukraine to provide mental health and psychosocial support to people who have fled Ukraine, which includes many different activities where volunteers can support people by using psychological first aid skills, organizing child-friendly spaces, offering referrals to other service providers and much more. Wounds of war are deep, sometimes too deep to manage alone. I don’t know when I’ll be able to go back home and help my people in Ukraine. It’s still not safe to return. For now, I can only plan a few days ahead. When I can – when any of us can – we’ll return home to that simple joy we once felt before. -- Nataliia K is a Mental Health and Psychosocial Support Delegate with the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies. She helps give back to people who have endured more than 100 days of crisis at home in Ukraine. She is from Kyiv.

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IFRC scales up cash assistance to people impacted by conflict in Ukraine

Three months into the ongoing conflict in Ukraine, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) has distributed financial assistance totalling more than 4.3 million Swiss francs to thousands of people on the move. IFRC Head of Emergency Operations for the Ukraine response, Anne Katherine Moore, said: “The longer the conflict continues, the greater the needs become. The cost of basic necessities, such as fresh fruit and vegetables, is rising. Increases in the cost of fuel and apartment rentals are also being reported. Millions of people have lost their jobs and their savings are dwindling. Through a new mobile app, we have been able to ramp up our support to help people facing these financial challenges.” The new technology makes it possible for the IFRC and responding National Societies to reach people at scale and to deliver cash assistance digitally. Successfully introduced in Romania, the mobile app allows refugees to self-register for assistance online, negating the need and cost involved of having to travel to a central location. The app will soon be expanded to Poland and Slovakia, where cash assistance is already being provided through more traditional methods such as in-person registration, as well as Ukraine and other neighbouring countries. “This is the fastest we have ever delivered cash at this scale. It has the potential to be a game-changer for our work not just in this response, but also in future operations,” Moore continued. Cash assistance is a dignified and efficient way to support people impacted by the conflict, allowing them to purchase items specific to their individual needs, while also supporting local economies. It is one part of our integrated and wide-ranging Red Cross and Red Crescent response to the conflict that also includes the provision of health care, first aid, psychosocial support and the distribution of basic household necessities. Speaking about next steps, Moore said: “There is no short-term solution to the needs of the more than 14 million people who have been forced to flee their homes. We know that even if the conflict was to end tomorrow, rebuilding and recovery will take years. People have lost their homes, their livelihoods, and access to timely healthcare. The IFRC, in support of local National Red Cross Societies in the region, will be there helping people now, and in the months and years to come.” -- Watch: our response 3 months on During the past three months: Together, we have reached more than 2.1million people with life-saving aid within Ukraine and in surrounding countries. This is 1 in 10 people who had to flee their homes because of the conflict. Along the travel routes within and outside Ukraine, we've set up 142 Humanitarian Service Points in 15 countries to provide those fleeing with a safe environment. There, they receive essential services like food, hygiene items, blankets, clothing water, first aid, psychosocial support, information, and financial assistance. In total, we distributed 2.3 million kilograms of aid. 71,000 Red Cross and Red Crescent volunteers are responding to the crisis.

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Ukraine conflict: How the Red Cross provides much-needed support to people leaving the country

They arrive at the border between Ukraine and Slovakia exhausted after two or three days of travelling. Some come by car. Many others are on foot, carrying bags, dragging suitcases. Since late February, nearly 6 million people have fled Ukraine to seek safety in other countries. There are women and there are children. Many, many children. The few men in the line up tend to be older. The younger ones have largely stayed behind to support their country in the conflict. The youngsters help the weary and worried adults carry their few precious belongings. They wear backpacks with teddy bears attached. One little girl carries her own bag of diapers. While some little ones cling to their mothers with all the strength their tiny hands can muster, older ones run about, excited about the adventure they have been told they are on. Their mothers scramble to corral them. People come to this border at Uzhhorod crossing all hours of the day and night. Volunteers with the Ukrainian Red Cross greet them. They provide information, food, hot drinks, clothing, and blankets. Decked out in their vibrant red emergency uniforms, they help carry people’s belongings up to the border crossing. Some need wheelchairs and the volunteers jump up to help. Once they cross the border, they will be welcomed by volunteers from the Slovak Red Cross. Olexander Bodnar is the 23-year-old man who heads up the volunteer team for the Ukrainian Red Cross in Uzhhorod, at the country’s western border. Twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week, the team takes shifts at this crossing. “My team are the most wonderful people on the earth,” he says. “We have so many kind people who have joined us. We have 130 volunteers who have signed up since the conflict began. Many are nurses and doctors.” Medical skills are highly valued. In a newly constructed building, the Red Cross has set up a small clinic, stocked with things like baby food and diapers. Cots line one side of the clinic as a place for weary travellers to rest, if only for a little while. It is here that the volunteers perform basic first aid. Many of the older people complain of rising blood pressure. Trained volunteers check it and tell me that most of the time, it’s fine. They are under extreme stress, and some experience panic attacks – a normal reaction during an abnormal event. Olexander shares a story about an older woman who was leaving her beloved country with her husband, who had just had surgery: “She fell to her knees and asked God to protect her country. She said ‘My dear Ukraine, please forgive me. I don’t want to leave you, but I must.’” Tears filled Olexander’s eyes as he helped the couple approach the border crossing. -- The IFRC is supporting the Ukrainian Red Cross, and many other Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies in the surrounding region, to help people affected by the conflict in Ukraine. Learn more about our work here.

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| Press release

IFRC to support more than 2 million people affected by the conflict in Ukraine with its largest ever rollout of emergency cash assistance

Geneva, 14 April 2022 – As the needs of people impacted by the conflict in Ukraine continue to grow, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) is scaling up its response activities to meet immediate and urgent needs, both inside Ukraine and within the countries people have fled to seeking safety. Secretary General of the IFRC, Jagan Chapagain, says: “This will be IFRC’s most extensive emergency cash programme. Our number one priority is getting support to people who are most vulnerable. From our previous experience with cash assistance, we know it is a dignified approach to providing aid as quickly and efficiently as possible. While financial assistance is a major component of our response, we’re also scaling up across many other sectors including health. We have already reached 160,000 people with healthcare and first aid support, but the longer the conflict continues, the more extensive the health needs will become.” In its largest emergency financial assistance programme to date, IFRC aims to reach more than 2 million people with support, targeting 360,000 people in Ukraine and neighbouring countries within the first three months. Longer-term financial assistance will address the needs of affected people as the crisis evolves. IFRC Regional Director for Europe Birgitte Bischoff Ebbesen, says: “With every day that passes, we know vulnerabilities increase. Access to medical supplies, food, water, utilities, and other vital goods and services deteriorates. We know there are so many uncertainties for people right now, but one thing that’s clear is the needs are immense, and they will be for a long time.” IFRC is supporting more than 1 million people with over 1,800 metric tonnes of hygiene and kitchen items, blankets, food, mats and tarpaulins in Ukraine and surrounding countries. The IFRC Secretariat with its member National Societies have launched a Federation-wide response plan for 1.2 billion Swiss francs, which aims to assist 3.6 million people over two years, with multi-purpose cash assistance, health & care and water, sanitation and hygiene services, as well as shelter and housing support. Globally, more than 55 National Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies have supported the response to date. The IFRC Secretariat is supporting this response plan by appealing for 550 million Swiss francs to scale up support to National Societies in Ukraine and neighbouring countries. Media contacts: In Ukraine: Caroline Haga, +358 50 5980500, [email protected] In Poland: Jenelle Eli, +1 202 603-6803, [email protected] In Romania: Angela Hill, +40 758 450 185, [email protected] In Budapest: Nicole Robicheau, +36 30 167 2629, [email protected] In Budapest: Kathy Mueller, +1 226 376-4013 [email protected] In Geneva: Anna Tuson, +41 79 895 6924, [email protected] Learn more about the IFRC's work in cash and voucher assistance here.

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Kuwaiti Red Crescent and Egyptian Red Crescent support people fleeing Ukraine

Since the onset of the conflict in Ukraine, Kuwait Red Crescent Society and Egyptian Red Crescent Society teams have rushed to provide humanitarian relief to the neighbouring countries of Ukraine. The Kuwaiti Red Crescent has provided food, medical aid, and necessary supplies to fleeing people affected by the conflict. While the Egyptian Red Crescent has assisted and evacuated Egyptians from Poland and Romania, and provided humanitarian support to others affected alike, including Arabic-speaking people. Dr. Hilal Al Sayer, President of the Kuwait Red Crescent Society (KRCS) said after meeting his Polish counterpart, Jery Bisek: “Kuwaiti aid includes medicines, medical supplies, food, milk for children and other necessities, and it reflects the Kuwaiti leadership and people’s solidarity with affected people living under such difficult circumstances.” Al-Sayer affirmed his country’s keenness to participate in humanitarian relief in all parts of the world, in line with the Kuwaiti humanitarian obligations. He stressed the need to further explore all ways to enhance cooperation and joint coordination to help alleviate the suffering of refugees from Ukraine, with partner organizations in the humanitarian field and with the Polish Red Cross. In turn, the President of the Polish Red Cross expressed his appreciation and gratitude after a Kuwaiti military aid plane loaded with relief materials and medical aid, estimated at 33.5 tons, arrived at Warsaw Airport in Poland. Bisek said: “The Kuwaiti Red Crescent is one of the first National Society responders that stepped in to provide the necessary support and assistance for those fleeing Ukraine”, adding that "the needs are still massive". In parallel, the Egyptian Red Crescent Society continues to provide aid and support to the Egyptian students and families it helped evacuate safely home after they had fled to Poland and Romania. Volunteers have worked tirelessly to ensure transportation for Egyptians fleeing from Ukraine across the borders of Poland and Romania to the airport. They also provided them with free hotel accommodation and food, travel documents, cash assistance, medical services, and psychological support. Students and their families expressed deep gratitude to the Egyptian Red Crescent Society for standing by their side in this ordeal, meeting their needs, and ensuring their safe return to their home country. The Egyptian Red Crescent Society, in collaboration with Polish and Romanian Red Cross Societies, has also established two relief centres at the Ukrainian-Romanian and Ukrainian-Polish borders to provide aid to Egyptians, Arabic speakers and others fleeing the conflict in Ukraine, especially women and children. The Egyptian Red Crescent Society also published a slogan on its Facebook page “Safety and Relief Without Discrimination’. Prior to the conflict, 6000 Egyptians lived in Ukraine, 3,000 of whom are students enrolled in the country’s universities.

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