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UN and partners appeal for US$5.6 billion to help millions affected by Ukraine war

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UN and partners appeal for US$5.6 billion to help millions affected by Ukraine war

Joint OCHA-UNHCR press release
15 February 2023
Poland. First Christmas in exile for refugees from Ukraine
Katerina, a refugee from Ukraine, holds her son Arsen at the collective centre where they live in Krakow, Poland.

With the full-scale war in Ukraine about to enter its second year, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) and the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) today jointly appealed for US$5.6 billion to ease the plight of millions of people affected.

The Humanitarian Response Plan for Ukraine, bringing together more than 650 partners, the majority of them Ukrainian organizations, calls for $3.9 billion to reach 11.1 million people with food, health care, cash and other life-saving assistance.

The Refugee Response Plan (RRP) for refugees from Ukraine appeals for $1.7 billion. The plan includes 10 refugee host countries, namely Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Moldova, Poland, Romania and Slovakia, with some 250 partners – more than half of whom are national partners. These funds will help 4.2 million Ukrainian refugees and communities in countries hosting them.

The humanitarian situation in Ukraine deteriorated rapidly in 2022, after the Russian Federation’s invasion escalated eight years of conflict in the east into a full-scale war. The devastation and destruction have been staggering, with some 40 per cent of Ukraine’s population now in need of humanitarian assistance and protection. The war has also forced many to flee Ukraine, resulting in a humanitarian crisis of a scale not witnessed in Europe for decades.

“Almost a year on, the war continues to cause death, destruction and displacement daily, and on a staggering scale,” said Martin Griffiths, the UN Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator.

“We will continue to prioritize assistance to people who need it most and to support local authorities and civil-society organizations, whose dedication has been inspiring,” he added. “We must do all we can to reach the hardest-to-reach communities, including those close to the front line. The suffering of the Ukrainian people is far from over – they continue to need international support.”

“The response in host countries to the Ukraine emergency has been remarkable, with strong state leadership, an outpouring of solidarity by host communities as well as the extraordinary work done by civil society, particularly local NGOs, and refugee-led and community-based organizations,” said Filippo Grandi, UN High Commissioner for Refugees.

“Europe has proven capable of bold, collective action to help refugees”, Grandi added.  “Refugees have not only been welcomed, but temporary protection arrangements have provided refugees with the right to work, access services and to be included in national systems.  We must not, however, take this response, or the hospitality of host communities, for granted.  Continued international support and solidary is needed, until refugees are able to return to their homes in safety and dignity, which must also remain a priority.”

Since the war began, humanitarian organizations in Ukraine have made every effort to scale up assistance to all regions of the country. Nearly 16 million people across Ukraine received aid and protection services in 2022, including areas outside Government control. Humanitarians also reached 6 million people with cash assistance, which also provided a boost to local economies.

Last year, RRP partners reached millions of refugees from Ukraine with protection and assistance, including over 1.1 million people who received support in accessing protection as well as over 609,000 children who benefited from child protection services. Almost 1 million refugees received in-kind support and over 885,000 people received urgent cash assistance to cover their basic needs.

In 2023, joint efforts and continued support to both response plans will enable partners inside Ukraine and refugee host countries to reach millions of people with protection services. This includes mental health and psychosocial support, child protection and gender-based violence prevention and response, shelter support, supplies for basic needs, and cash assistance.

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