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Ukraine Appeal update: 1 year after the invasion

24 February 2023

Thank you to everyone who has fundraised and donated to the CAFOD Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal. Your donations are making a very real difference to people living through this conflict.

Our largest local expert organisation has been able to provide assistance to 22,000 people on daily basis

How your donations have helped

Ukraine: Provision of food assistance including hot food and food parcels at soup kitchens. Home deliveries for vulnerable individuals (elderly, those with disabilities) in hard to access areas.

Romania; Poland; Moldova: Provision of food assistance including hot food, food parcels, and vouchers at refugee accommodation centres.

Ukraine: Distribution of hygiene kits and specialised hygiene kits for individuals with special needs, provision of drinking water

Romania; Poland; Moldova: Distribution of hygiene kits and shopping vouchers; and provision of access to drinking water, showers, and laundry services at refugee accommodation centres.

Ukraine: Support services including individual counselling and group therapy at centres and through outreach teams; legal assistance for recovery of documentation and access to state services; provision of child-friendly spaces

Romania; Poland; Moldova: Provision of child friendly spaces, cultural integration and language classes, psychosocial support, legal advice on rights and obligations as refugees in host state

Ukraine: Delivery of basic family medical kits

Romania; Poland; Moldova: Delivery of health services in refugee accommodation centres; subsidising cost of medical services and medicines

Ukraine: Provision of temporary emergency shelter; support to secure long-term housing; cash grants for short-term rent; emergency reconstruction of damaged housing; provision of supplies including warm clothes, generators, lighting, and fuel

Romania; Poland; Moldova: Emergency cash support for rent, cash support for resettlement and moving costs

Romania; Poland; Moldova: Provision of tablets to support refugees continuing national education curriculum

Ukraine: Multipurpose cash assistance to vulnerable people who have been forced to flee home

Romania; Poland; Moldova: Monthly multipurpose cash assistance for refugees, subsidised transportation to access integration opportunities

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Volunteering with Father Vitaly

The fighting in Ukraine has taken a heavy toll on Kharkiv, its second largest city, forcing many people to take shelter underground. Supported by donations from people like you, Father Vitaly is working with Depaul Ukraine’s team of volunteers to deliver aid to where it’s needed most.

"The humanitarian crisis in this part of the city is huge. Everybody needs humanitarian aid. We focus on those who are not able to move because of their physical health, because of their age, because they have children.” Father Vitaly unloads and delivers supplies including canned meat, soup, fresh veg and milk, as well as cereals and special creams for babies.

This distribution will never stop because it is energy, human energy.

Father Vitaly

Depaul Ukraine is an organisation CAFOD partners with and has teams in Kharkiv, Kyiv and Odessa. Each day they deliver vital food to people who currently have no other way of accessing food. All together they are able to reach over 22,000 people with regular supplies.

“If you are a human being and you are in normal health, it’s normal that you are trying to do everything for those who suffer, who are in need, who need your help. This is the time when I feel to be called, to act the most, to reduce this suffering.”


The Bicycle Heroes

“My name is Yana and I am a specialist in the design of machines. Recently, I designed grain elevators. The factory where I used to work has been relocated from Kharkiv. It is not clear if it is still operating. There is no need for my kind of specialisation now.

That’s why Yana decided to become a bicycle volunteer.

When fuel is running low, crucial aid delivery can’t be made by trucks and cars. CAFOD is supporting Depaul Ukraine to organise a team of brilliant bicycle volunteers – brave, defiant people like Yana – to deliver supplies to people who cannot leave their homes, including older people and people living with disabilities.

Thanks to your donations, and the incredible bravery of bicycle volunteers like Yana, vital food baskets reach 700 people on a regular basis

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Cash Cards for Ukrainian Refugees in Poland

The Caritas Lublin warehouse is located just 100 km away from the Ukrainian border* (local Polish communities are only a few kilometres away from their Ukrainian counterparts). It became one of the first destinations for those who crossed into Poland. Within the first few days of the war, more than 100,000 people were entering Poland each day – and Caritas Lublin, supported by CAFOD with donations from people like you, was there to help.

One unique way Caritas Lublin has been responding to the crisis is through providing refugees with prepaid cards that can be used in any store with a card terminal. Monetary amounts on the cards vary depending on the size of a family. For people who have been forced to flee their homes – losing everything – the cash cards provide autonomy and dignity.

Your donations are making a difference

Since the beginning of the war, nearly 160 trucks full of aid have left the Caritas warehouse.


Ivanna's story

Ivanna is a therapist living in Kharkiv. When the war began, her home was destroyed by shelling. It was a miracle no one in her family was seriously hurt. They moved in with friends – their house was soon hit by shelling too: “Everything burned.”

This humanitarian aid helps during this challenging time. It is crucial. The volunteers are doing an amazing job. Despite the hardship, I will never leave Kharkiv. This is my city.


But Ivanna refused to give up on her patients, defiantly continuing her consultations remotely, over the phone: “The majority of my patients left the city and moved to safer regions of Ukraine or abroad. That said, a lot of them still continue to seek advice from me regarding their health issues. The needs of my patients and a daily routine have saved me from constantly worrying about the uncertain future.”

With your fantastic support, Ivanna receives regular food baskets from Depaul Ukraine’s brave volunteers. Each food basket costs about 12 Euros. The contents are chosen by a nutritionist and are designed to last one person for five days.

What is CAFOD calling for?

Every human life is priceless. We have called for an urgent diplomatic solution and a lasting ceasefire to prevent further suffering and to bring peace back to the region.

Last year we urged you to write to the UK Home and Foreign secretaries to push peace in Ukraine and safety for refugees. Thanks to your support and campaigning, we had a total of 3,482 people who had emailed asking them to take actions.

Please continue to pray for urgent peace in Ukraine