First deliveries of aid to a retirement home in Chernivtsi. | © HI
In Chernivtsi, a city in western Ukraine, HI is assisting host institutions for older people and people with disabilities displaced by the conflict.
HI has begun providing support to institutions in Chernivtsi, a city in the west of Ukraine, including a care facility where people with disabilities and older people forced from their homes by fighting and bombing have been given shelter. HI has supplied the home with walking frames and sticks, and incontinence pads and bedpans for the bedridden. This equipment will help these displaced people stay mobile and self-reliant.
“We have supplied items to a retirement home in Chernivtsi,” explains Virginie Duclos, HI’s emergency rehabilitation manager. “The home normally has 130 residents but has doubled its capacity to accommodate people with specific needs who have fled their homes in search of safety. HI’s team has begun providing the home with essential equipment and mobility aids. We will stay in contact to continue providing them with support.”
HI is working closely with Ukrainian disabled people’s organisations to identify and meet the most pressing needs. People with disabilities and vulnerable individuals are often abandoned during conflicts and their specific requirements are not always taken into account by emergency relief.
Ten million people have already been displaced by the conflict in Ukraine - 23% of the population. Some 6.5 million people have been internally displaced and 3.4 million have taken refuge in neighbouring countries. HI’s teams are also active in Moldova to where more than 300,000 people have fled the conflict.
The UN estimates that more than 12 million people currently need humanitarian relief in Ukraine. HI’s experts in the west of the country are continuing to assess priorities and plan to provide emergency response very shortly. To meet the multiple and complex needs of people affected by the conflict, HI is planning to provide physical rehabilitation care and psychosocial assistance and to distribute essential items and hygiene kits along with cash transfers.
“Humanitarian relief is not reaching the people worst affected by the conflict in Ukraine. Some people are already dying in besieged cities because they are unable to meet their basic needs, such as for food and water,” says Fanny Mraz, HI’s Emergency Director.
Heavy bombing and the lack of safe corridors has prevented the transport of aid to affected areas in the east of the country. HI is ready to use any opening to supply relief to these people in desperate need of assistance.