UK aid charities raise more than £400m for humanitarian crisis in Ukraine

More than £400 million has been donated to UK charities to help people in Ukraine.

As a result, the Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC) has become the biggest charity donor to the response inside Ukraine, and to the regional refugee response, according to the UN Office for the Co-ordination of Humanitarian Affairs.

The UK Government match-funded £25 million of public donations to the DEC’s Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal, its largest ever commitment through UK Aid Match.

The majority of DEC funds spent in the first six months of the conflict (59%) were used inside Ukraine, with the rest spent on the refugee response in Romania, Poland, Moldova and Hungary.

The DEC brings together 15 leading UK aid charities at times of crisis overseas to raise funds quickly.

It launched a report on Thursday on its response to the humanitarian crisis in Ukraine over the first year of the conflict, entitled Ukraine: How Your Donations Are Helping.

Based on programmatic data, detailed interviews with aid workers and testimonies gathered from people affected, the digital report provides insight on how donations from the UK public have enabled DEC charities, working with local organisations, to provide aid to millions of people in need, both inside Ukraine and in neighbouring countries.

Examples of aid include providing food and water in war-torn areas, delivering 75,000 life-saving trauma kits and 34 incubators for premature babies, and generators for people in bomb shelters to keep warm over winter as the targeting of Ukraine’s power grid leaves them without electricity and heating.

DEC charities and local partners also gave refugees and people displaced from their homes within Ukraine cash payments, supported special schools in Poland for refugee children with Ukrainian teachers, and provided mental health support to people recovering from experiences of conflict.

According to the report, in the first six months of the response, the DEC provided 1.9 million people with access to clean water, 392,000 people with food and 338,000 people with cash payments.

It also provided 114,000 people with legal help and support, 71,000 with access to primary healthcare services and 10,000 with temporary accommodation.

DEC chief executive Saleh Saeed said: “This report gives a comprehensive picture of how donations from the UK public have played a vital role in supporting people affected by the conflict in Ukraine.

“Throughout each phase of the crisis, and each new challenge that’s arisen, DEC charities and their local partners have been there to help people get through this – and that wouldn’t have been possible without the support of the UK public, businesses, governments and other organisations that have made this appeal such a success.

“The crisis has been so huge, so widespread and so devastating that we wanted to take the time to detail how donations have helped different people at every stage of the year.

“What’s more, the level of funds raised mean that we can keep providing that support, as we know that this crisis is far from over with needs developing and changing all the time as the situation unfolds.

“I’d like to thank each and every person who has donated, fundraised, got their company or organisation involved. The response has been truly remarkable and we are so grateful for the support.”

Foreign Secretary James Cleverly said: “Through our work with the DEC, the UK Government has matched, pound for pound, £25 million in generous donations from the British public – our largest ever commitment through UK Aid Match. This funding is a life-line for those Ukrainians who have lost everything. Thank-you for your remarkable support.”

The DEC is still accepting donations to the appeal.

Thirteen of the DEC’s 15 member charities are responding either directly or through local partners in Ukraine, Poland, Hungary, Moldova and Romania. The members responding are Action Against Hunger, ActionAid UK, Age International, British Red Cross, CAFOD, Care International UK, Christian Aid, Concern Worldwide UK, International Rescue Committee UK, Oxfam GB, Plan International UK, Save the Children UK and World Vision UK.

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