Ukraine | 2022 | CBPF
Ukraine, Donetsk and Luhansk. Since the war started in eastern Ukraine in 2014, older residents have been among the most vulnerable. When other family members flee, elders are often left alone and struggling.
Even before February 2022, one third of Ukrainians trapped by the conflict in eastern Ukraine who needed assistance were over 60. As the war escalated elsewhere in Ukraine after the invasion in February 2022, the ‘People in Need’ NGO continued to support people in the east, as they had been doing consistently for eight years.
With funding from the Ukraine Humanitarian Fund (UHF) and other donors, ‘People in Need’ (PiN) organized assistance, including water, food, and hygiene items, delivered by train from the Czech Republic to Dnipro and then onward by trucks or vans driven by local partners including ‘Right to Protection’ and the Ukrainian Red Cross.
PIN’s long-term partner in Ukraine, HelpAge International, conducted a survey at the beginning of March 2022 and found that 99 per cent of older people in Donetsk and Luhansk Oblasts had no plans to leave. For many, mobility difficulties mean leaving is impossible, many do not have family nearby to help, and most cannot even reach local shelters.
Older people said they remain at home when fighting is going on outside because they don’t want to be a burden, they want to protect their homes, or because they have already moved many times before.
“The biggest worries are that with more fighting, more elderly people will be left behind, isolated and in urgent need of food, water and health and mental health support,” warns Petr Drbohlav, HelpAge Regional Director. With UHF funding, PiN and other partners have been able to continue providing vulnerable older people with much needed support.
More information on the Ukraine Humanitarian Fund: