Six months ago, the escalation of international armed conflict in Ukraine began.
Millions of people fled into neighbouring countries with only what they could carry whilst millions more were displaced within Ukraine.
The humanitarian needs grow every day, with many struggling to afford basic necessities.
Some are now returning home to badly damaged or destroyed houses, schools, hospitals, and other infrastructure.
Health facilities are struggling to cope, and critical medical supplies are scarce.
In the past six months, Red Cross teams in Ukraine and surrounding countries have reached over 8 million people with essential humanitarian assistance, including healthcare and mental health support, cash and voucher assistance, water and sanitation services, and food support.
Donate today to the Ukraine Crisis Appeal and you can help provide emergency relief and longer-term humanitarian support to people and communities affected by this unfolding crisis.
Your donation can help provide the life-saving support needed right now and, in the weeks and months to come.
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As the security situation allows, Ukraine Red Cross, International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), the International Federation of Red Cross (IFRC) and other Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement partners are responding to existing and emerging humanitarian needs.
Within Ukraine, teams are providing first aid and psychosocial support, transporting people to hospital, helping to reunite families through the Red Cross hotline, and delivering humanitarian aid to shelters, medical facilities, and temporary accommodations for those who are displaced. They’re present at border crossings, supporting families with food, water and hygiene kits, and organising bedding and clothing in places of temporary accommodation.
They’ve also assisted in evacuating over 57,000 people from Energodar, Sumy, Kviy region, Kharkiv and Kherson region to safer areas.
Red Cross teams across Eastern Europe are supporting the millions of people arriving from Ukraine.
Temporary accommodation has been set up along the borders to offer shelter or respite for the night. Volunteers are distributing food, water, bedding, clothes and basic aid items on both sides of the border and providing medical care and psychosocial support for those in need. They’re also handing out SIM cards, so that people can stay in touch with their loved ones.
Ukrainian Red Cross Society (URCS) has 10,000 volunteers and 800 staff working across the country. Across the country, volunteers are providing first aid and psychosocial support, transporting people to hospital, helping to reunite families through the Red Cross hotline, and delivering humanitarian aid to shelters, medical facilities, and temporary accommodation for those who are displaced.
The ICRC operations in Ukraine are among the ten largest ICRC operations worldwide (out of 100 places they work). They have over 600 staff members in six offices across Ukraine on either side of the line of contact. The ICRC have been in Ukraine since 2014. Additional ICRC personnel have arrived in Ukraine to help scale up assistance work, including medical staff, weapons contamination specialists and other emergency team members. As of 23 March, about 140 additional staff have been deployed, joining a workforce of about 600in six offices across Ukraine on either side of the line of contact.
IFRC through its Country Delegation in Ukraine and supported by its Regional Office for Europe, has been providing technical support to URCS and mobilising international aid to programs and operations led by the National Society.
Our Restoring Family Links team can help people who have lost contact with relatives in Ukraine or Russia due to the current situation. We assess cases, and work through the global Family Links Network to assist people to re-establish contact with family members. Please be aware that because of the evolving situation this may take some time.
Our Restoring Family Links hotline is available Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm (AEST) on 1800 875 199 or via email at email@example.com.
Donations above $2 are tax-deductible in Australia. You will receive a receipt in your name in an email when you donate online.
Australian Red Cross will not deduct more than 10 per cent of money raised to cover indirect essential costs such as receipting donations, IT costs, costs to send the money overseas and overheads. Any interest earned on donations will be invested back into the appeal.
We welcome volunteer support, but we can’t send volunteers overseas to help in an emergency or humanitarian crisis. When we need to send people overseas, we have a roster of skilled aid workers with extensive experience in their field, together with previous international experience, and training in how our emergency operations work. To volunteer with Red Cross in Australia, visit redcross.org.au/volunteer to search volunteer opportunities.
We really appreciate the generosity, but we are not accepting in-kind donations for food, clothes, medical equipment or other items, as we’re unable to distribute those overseas. There are several good reasons for this. Every item has to be checked, cleaned, sorted, packed, transported, stored and distributed, which hugely increases the cost of the relief effort and diverts from work that may be needed on the ground.
Also, the items donated aren’t always what people need. But cash helps people make dignified choices that are right for them. Even worse, unwanted boxes of donated goods can clog ports and post offices and actually prevent the delivery of essential items like medicines and relief supplies.
The website DonateResponsibly.org has a great explanation of what can go wrong.
If you have good-quality clothes or household items, our Red Cross Shops would gratefully accept them, to on-sell in Australia and raise funds for our vital work. Find out how you can donate.
We are using the money donated during the bushfires to help those directly affected by the fires – including those who lost loved ones or homes, and those who were injured. We won’t and can’t use those funds for any other purpose.
As of 31 December 2021, 96% of the funds raised for the bushfires have been disbursed or spent. We know from our work after other disasters that recovery takes years, not months. This is why we are still supporting bushfire affected communities and will continue to do so. Red Cross is actively supporting the ongoing bushfire recovery efforts in Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria and South Australia. The remaining funds are allocated for this ongoing recovery support, across a 3-year program. This work includes psychosocial support, capacity building, community recovery and advocacy. For more information visit redcross.org.au/bushfirereport.
Photo, top: Anette Selmer-Andresen / IFRC. Photo, bottom: The emergency healthcare unit of Hungarian Red Cross at the Ukrainina border. Tamara Vukov / IFRC.