As the war in Ukraine continues to rage on, the Australian community has rallied together to help provide urgent humanitarian support to families displaced by the war.
More than $3.5 million have been raised through the Caritas Australia Ukraine Appeal, which will provide much-needed emergency food, shelter, medication, clean water and other essentials.
“We are so incredibly humbled by the generosity of our supporters, both long-term and new. The compassion that they have shown to the people of Ukraine during this hour of need is truly amazing,” said Kirsty Robertson, Caritas Australia’s CEO.
“It reminds me of what we’re hearing from our partners on the ground, Caritas Ukraine and Caritas Spes, who have both been blessed with an extraordinary outpouring of support. In dark times, like in times of war and crisis, we often see the best of humanity against the backdrop of the worst. It gives us great hope for the future.”
Since the beginning of the conflict, Caritas Ukraine together with local Caritas offices has assisted more than 800,000 people throughout Ukraine. Volunteers are helping transport hundreds of tons of cargo across the country – including bedding, medicines, hygiene supplies, and much more. In the past week alone over 50,000 people have received emergency food kits or hot meals.
How your support is making a difference:
received urgent medications
168,182 HYGIENE PACKS
have been distributed to internally displaced people
received assistance for water and sanitation
The funds raised through the appeal are also supporting Caritas Moldova, in partnership with Catholic Relief Services, to provide transitional accommodation to Ukrainians displaced by the conflict. Over 460,000 people have fled into Moldova since the conflict began.
More than two months into the war, there is continued active fighting in eastern and southern Ukraine. While the international spotlight has mostly been focused on the impact on children, who are at high risk of human trafficking and exploitation, the conflict is also posing a great threat to the health and wellbeing of the older generation who continue to reside in highly volatile areas.
So far, more than 14 million people have been displaced by the war – many of them elderly people who need urgent medication for chronic illnesses. Roughly one in four people in Ukraine are over 60 years old and at least two million older women are still left behind in Ukraine.
A HelpAge survey of people over 60 in the Donbas region in March found that 99 per cent of people in this age group do not want to leave their homes, even though they need help getting food and are experiencing extreme cold due to electricity cuts.
Many vulnerable older women who are largely reliant on social services are no longer getting the support they need due to mass disruptions, but also cannot afford to, or do not want to, evacuate from their homes.
Caritas Ukraine has been directly supporting older men and women through their home care program, which had been running for several years in the Donbas region. Where possible this program continues to deliver support for medicine, food and clean water to vulnerable people. In addition, Caritas Ukraine has been working to provide safe passage to women and children crossing the border to prevent human trafficking.
Your support can provide vital shelter, food, clean water and protection to vulnerable families fleeing conflict, like the war in Ukraine.
Give now to help Caritas staff and partners on the ground deliver urgently needed humanitarian aid.