Delivering together: Pooled funds delivered medical supplies and psychosocial support

Medical supplies are delivered to Kherson. OCHA/Oleksandr Ratushniak.

Ukraine | 2022 | CERF

Ukraine. OCHA’s pooled funds – the Central Emergency Response Fund and the Ukraine Humanitarian Fund – have worked together since the war began to deliver life-saving help to people in desperate need.

The war has brought death, injury, mass displacement, destruction of infrastructure and housing, and deprivation. The number of people in need of humanitarian aid and protection increased from approximately 3 million people at the start of the year to nearly 18 million a few months later. In the 2022 Flash Appeal, humanitarian organizations asked for nearly US $4.3 billion to reach people affected by the war.

The Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF), the UN’s emergency fund, allocated over US$60 million from February, making Ukraine the largest CERF recipient in 2022. The first allocation, for $20 million, was made on the very first day of bombing, on 24 February, to allow agencies to rapidly scale up life-saving assistance and protection to people affected by the escalating war.  This helped UN agencies quickly scale up their cash, in-kind and protection assistance for vulnerable people inside Ukraine and in neighbouring Poland and Moldova, while also enhancing the humanitarian community logistics and telecommunications capacity.

The Ukraine Humanitarian Fund (UHF) has been funding local and international NGOs and UN agencies, including in areas affected before February 2022. On 1 March, the UHF allocated over US$40 million to help its partners quickly scale up relief work across Ukraine – including mobile health care, trauma and psychological first aid, water delivery and temporary shelter, as well as cash grants. Donations increased, and the total funds from UHF this year rose to over $192 million disbursed to 56 partners across Ukraine. The UHF made it easier for existing partners to change their projects to address the rapidly changing needs – and fast-tracked eligibility requirements for new partners, so that more people could be reached.

The humanitarian community used both Funds to reach people in need.

Essential supplies and mental health support

The city of Kharkiv suffered badly, and CERF and UHF funding to the International Organization for Migration (IOM) allowed their local partner, Source of Revival, to deliver thousands of solar lamps, blankets hygiene kits, mattresses and other supplies for people displaced by the fighting.

Psychosocial support is as critical as basic supplies. Mobile teams supported by funding from CERF, UHF, and other donors were deployed by the UN Population Fund (UNFPA) throughout Ukraine to serve people affected by the conflict.

“We strive to provide emotional, physical, legal protection and comfort for each survivor. Our mobile teams are premised in local communities, where the need for services is the highest,” said Mustafa Elkanzi, UNFPA Senior Emergency Coordinator in Ukraine.

Adapting quickly as the situation changes

As the situation evolved, money from CERF and the UHF allowed humanitarians to adapt and respond. In Kherson, the World Health Organization (WHO) – supported by CERF, UHF, and other donors – delivered medical supplies to the city less than 72 hours after it was re-taken by the Government of Ukraine, in November 2022.

“These supplies will save lives and go towards ensuring that the resilient health system can continue delivering care in these challenging circumstances and support hundreds of thousands of people,” explained Dr. Jarno Habicht, WHO Representative in Ukraine.

As 2023 begins, some 18 million people need assistance. The OCHA-managed pooled funds will continue to support humanitarian organizations delivering essential supplies and services for the most vulnerable people across Ukraine.

Original story (IOM)

Original story (UNFPA)

Original Story (WHO)

More information on Central Emergency Response Fund allocation.