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Ukraine map
UNICEF Photo: children huddle on the floor covering their heads with their hands © UNICEF/Maksym Darkin/2016 Schastia, Luhanska Oblasts. Children are undergoing shelling training organized by ICRC, Sep. 22, 2016.

Ukraine

In 2017, UNICEF and partners plan for:
2.5 million

people accessing safe water (for drinking, cooking and hygiene) through effective water treatment mechanisms and emergency repair of WASH infrastructure

500,000

girls and boys and their caregivers received mine-risk education (MRE)

110,000

children aged 3 to 16 years in conflict-affected areas accessing early childhood development and basic education

2017 Requirements: US$31,200,000

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Snapshot

Total people in need: 3.8 million
Total children (<18) in need: 1 million

Total people to be reached in 2017: 2.5 million
Total children to be reached in 2017: 475,000

The political situation in Ukraine remains tense and humanitarian access to non-government controlled areas (NGCAs) continues to pose a challenge. Breaches of the ceasefire agreement occur daily along the contact line,1 contributing to a volatile security situation that threatens further displacement. The conflict continues to impact nearly 4.4 million people in eastern Ukraine. Immediate humanitarian assistance is required for 3.8 million people, including 1 million children.2 UNICEF estimates that 200,000 children live within 15 kilometres of each side of the contact line,3 of which about 2 per cent are regularly forced to take refuge in improvised bomb shelters. Children are exposed to the risk of explosive remnants of war and landmines, and girls are particularly at risk of different forms of gender-based violence. UNICEF estimates that one school in five in NGCAs has been damaged and is in urgent need of repair. Given the extensive infrastructure damage, coupled with deepening poverty, access to safe drinking water remains a challenge for 2.9 million people in NGCAs alone.4 With primary health care services largely unavailable in rural areas and along the contact line, the risk of communicable disease outbreaks remains a concern.

Humanitarian strategy

2017 programme targets

Nutrition

  • 20,000 mothers in affected areas with improved knowledge on the benefits of exclusive breastfeeding

Health

  • 90 per cent of children under 12 months accessing routine immunization in conflict-affected areas
  • 20,000 pregnant women accessing basic life-saving drugs and medical equipment

WASH

  • 2.5 million people accessing safe water (for drinking, cooking and hygiene) through effective water treatment mechanisms and emergency repair of WASH infrastructure
  • 200,000 people accessing hygiene supplies and knowledge of basic hygiene practices

Child protection

  • 100,000 children and caregivers accessing immediate psychosocial support services
  • 500,000 girls and boys and their caregivers received MRE
  • 2,000 community professionals trained in identifying and responding to key child protection issues

Education

  • 110,000 children aged 3 to 16 years in conflict-affected areas accessing early childhood development and basic education
  • 10,000 youths, parents and teachers received life-skills training, including education-in-emergencies and coordination

HIV and AIDS

  • 12,000 HIV-positive patients accessing uninterrupted ARV treatment
  • 38,000 pregnant women tested for HIV

UNICEF will continue to strengthen the resilience of conflict-affected children and provide life-saving support in Ukraine. This will include ensuring access to education, safe learning spaces, community-based protection services and immediate psychosocial support for the most vulnerable children. By working closely with partner organizations, schools, community centres and through mobile teams, the programme will also support primary health care services in conflict-affected areas. Treatment of adults and children with HIV and prevention of mother-to-child HIV transmission will remain key objectives. Access to safe drinking water for displaced and host communities will be supported through the provision of critical chemicals for treatment plants, including those previously supported by other partners, rehabilitation of infrastructure and the creation of alternative sources. UNICEF will promote infant and young child feeding in emergencies, while improving coordination mechanisms through its leadership in the education and water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) clusters, the child protection sub-cluster and the nutrition working group. UNICEF will also contribute to the health cluster as well as the HIV/AIDS and mine action sub-clusters. Collaboration will continue with governments and partners at all levels.

Results from 2016

As of 31 October 2016, UNICEF had received US$26.6 million against the US$54.3 million appeal (49 per cent funded).5 UNICEF’s expanded capacity6 focused on the provision of psychosocial support to more than 207,000 children, youth and caregivers through school and community-based outreach interventions, with girls constituting 60 per cent of the total number. Life-saving mine risk education (MRE) sessions were provided to more than 250,000 children and their families. Rehabilitation of schools affected by the conflict and the provision of education materials and athletic equipment continued throughout the year. UNICEF reached 7,500 children in 29 educational facilities in Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts by installing new heating systems to prepare facilities for winter. Warm clothing was delivered to 10,000 children from families facing poverty in settlements on the contact line. In partnership with non-governmental organizations and utility companies, UNICEF supported water quality improvement and the repair and rehabilitation of WASH infrastructure, reaching 2.5 million7 people in high-concern areas in both government-controlled areas (GCAs) and NGCAs, including exit-entrance checkpoints. UNICEF advocated with the Ministry of Health to procure vaccines for GCAs. Delivery of antiretroviral (ARV) medications covered more than 8,000 patients in NGCAs.8 UNICEF also supported more than 29,000 safe deliveries by providing midwifery kits covering both GCAs and NGCAs.

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Funding requirements

In line with the country’s inter-agency 2017 Humanitarian Response Plan, UNICEF is requesting US$31.2 million to meet the humanitarian needs of children in Ukraine in 2017. This includes an additional US$500,000 to ensure effective cluster/sector coordination on national and local levels. This will cover both immediate life-saving interventions and more comprehensive and sustained services for all conflict-affected children in Ukraine. An additional US$5 million beyond the Humanitarian Response Plan is requested to reach 50,000 people with HIV and AIDS services. UNICEF is grateful for the funds received to date and is urgently appealing for additional funds to address the critical humanitarian needs of affected women and children and to provide crucial services, including WASH, education, supplies for HIV/AIDS response and MRE.

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1 Over the course of the conflict, the ‘contact line’ between GCAs and NGCAs has become a de facto border with five official exit/entrance checkpoints to cross it.
2 Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, ‘2017 Ukraine Humanitarian Needs Overview’, OCHA.
3 Findings are produced through an assessment of institutional facilities (i.e. kindergartens, schools, boarding schools, hospitals, etc.) operated by the Government of Ukraine on the contact line. The assessment will be publically available in January 2017.
4 Ibid.
5 Available funds included funding received against the current appeal of US$7.8 million and US$18.8 million carried forward from the previous year.
6 UNICEF operates through six zonal offices/presence, established in Kramatorsk (GCA), Mariupol (GCA), Donetsk (NGCA), Luhansk (NGCA), Kharkiv (GCA) and Dnipro (GCA), covering five regions (oblasts) of eastern Ukraine.
7 2.5 million people benefited from water quality improvement, which also includes 300,000 people benefiting from the rehabilitation of infrastructure.
8 This includes an optimized treatment that resulted in a cost savings that provided 2,000 people with treatment.