Since 24 February, Caritas Internationalis and the Caritas Confederation continue to work tirelessly to support vulnerable persons and communities whose lives have been devastated as a result of the ongoing conflict and unrest within Ukraine.
Together, Caritas Ukraine and Caritas-Spes Ukraine have assisted nearly 900,000 people who are victims of the ongoing political unrest in the region. Since the beginning of the conflict Caritas Ukraine have assisted no less than 593,000 persons by providing: housing and shelter in local Caritas offices; food to over 270,000 people; the distribution of 128,774 hygiene kits; and more than 939 tonnes of humanitarian supplies. Meanwhile Caritas-Spes has assisted 303,981 people since February 24: 88,536 people have been provided with shelter and accommodation; 37,548 people have received support, protection and childcare assistance; and 145,154 people have received water, hygiene items and detergents through their WASH programme.
According the UNHCR, over 12 million people have been displaced since late February. Within Ukraine at least 7.1 million people are internally displaced while more than 4.9 million people have crossed international borders seeking refuge after the destruction of their homes, towns and cities.
In Poland the diocesan Caritas network took immediate action to help provide assistance to refugees crossing the border from Ukraine. Over 2.8 million refugees have entered the country from Ukraine since the outbreak of war and Caritas centres have provided: shelter to nearly 8,300 families and another 37,000 refugees have been given shelter in private homes; and 1.5 million meals to over 537,000 people.
Caritas Romania, is working with other Confederation members to meet the needs of refugees in the country. Through its diocesan network, Caritas Romania provides: shelter, food and non-food items, medicines, vouchers, counselling, safeguarding and protection support, and capacity building for staff and volunteers.
Caritas Bulgaria, through its diocesan and parish structures and the local Catholic Church, has supported nearly 2,000 refugees from Ukraine and are concentrating its efforts to meet the basic accommodation, food, non-food and social support needs of refugees in the country.
In Moldova, Caritas recently opened a refugee placement centre to better respond to the changing and growing needs of refugees from Ukraine. Since the outbreak of war, Caritas Moldova have assisted refugees through: financial assistance, immediate humanitarian aid, psychosocial support, hot food, accommodation, medical care, education, hygiene kits, technology support, and cash assistance.
In the Czech Republic, where an estimated 350,000 refugees have arrived since February, the national Caritas has established network of Regional Centres for Help and Assistance to Ukraine to provide relief aid, accommodation and assistance to refugees. In addition, Caritas facilitates integration of refugees into Czech society by providing support to integrate children into schools and helping refugees to contact public services and enter the labour market.