The armed conflict in eastern Ukraine, which began in 2014, has remained unresolved despite diplomatic efforts and numerous cease-fire agreements.
Some 4.4 million people have been affected by the conflict. Over ten thousand have been killed and 25,000 wounded – including civilians.
As of February 2018, some 1.49 million people were registered as internally displaced. The UN estimates that more than three million in total have been displaced by the violence – inside and outside Ukraine, and that 3.4 million are in need of humanitarian assistance.
Many affected Ukrainians – especially those along the frontlines – are facing a lack of basic services. Employment is scarce, medical care is difficult to access, and many don't have adequate food, shelter or heating.
Although freedom of movement remains a challenge with security and administrative barriers, an estimated one million civilians risk their lives by travelling between government controlled and non-government controlled areas every month to maintain family ties, look after property, and access markets and health care.
People we helped in Ukraine in 2017
NRC supports internally displaced Ukrainians and civilians in government controlled areas in the regions of Luhansk and Donetsk, especially along the contact line.
Our support addresses basic needs, but as displacement becomes protracted, we have also begun to contribute to durable solutions. In areas away from the frontlines, our activities in the country are shifting from emergency relief to early-recovery and recovery activities.
Information, counselling and legal assistance (ICLA)
We provide free legal information and counselling. Our ICLA teams:
- operate three legal aid centres
- dispatch mobile teams of lawyers
- make home visits to the elderly and people with disabilities
- run a telephone hotline for legal information
- organise group information sessions
- conduct research and advocacy efforts on legal issues concerning displaced civilians and civilians affected by the conflict
- help strengthen capacity of local authorities and civil society on the rights of internally displaced people
Livelihoods and food security
We work to restore Ukrainians' self-reliance and livelihoods. For communities living along the contact line, we improve access to local markets.
Our livelihoods and food security team:
- provides cash transfers, so people can buy food
- assists the most food insecure households and communities to restore infrastructure
- provides agricultural assistance to restore production capabilities
- provides small business development grants to stimulate economic recovery
- support vocational training courses
- establishing community centres for displaced and host communities
Shelter and settlements
We work to make sure that displaced Ukrainians and civilians along the contact line in Luhansk region have roofs over their heads, fuel and that they have the basic household items they need.
- Our shelter team:
- provides emergency shelters, recovery shelter with light and medium, heavy repair, and full reconstruction of houses
- repairs community infrastructure, like hospitals, centres for elderly, schools, and orphanages
- prepares civilians for the cold winter temperatures with fuel, proper housing insulation and warm clothes
NRC in Ukraine
Getting by after four years of war in Ukraine
Anastasiia Ursova lives in a small village with her husband Mikhail and their two young sons. But it was not always like that. One night in 2014, they took the last train to escape from heavy artillery attacks.
Winter assistance for civilians in eastern Ukraine
For many Ukrainians, winter is hard. People in eastern Ukraine have to make tough choices on how to spend the few resources they have: should they spend them on food, medication, their children’s education or bills?