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UNICEF helps meet the hygiene and water needs of children affected by the crisis in Ukraine

25 February 2015

UNICEF estimates that 750,000 children and adults in Ukraine are in need of hygiene supplies and drinking water. As the number of displaced people within the country reaches one million (of which, 134,000 are children) children and their families are confronted with deteriorating access to safe drinking water, appropriate hygiene and sanitation, often lacking the basic hygiene supplies.

With the support of the UN Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF), UNICEF procured 3,080 baby, adult and family hygiene kits for children and families affected by the crisis in Ukraine. Safe drinking water has been provided to the people living in Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts reaching over 30,000 people, including children.

Displaced families with children flee their homes with few belongings and the first basic items they need are hygiene supplies including soap, oral hygiene items, towels, diapers and napkins for children. Many of them were forces to live in places with disrupted water supply and damaged sanitation system.

©UNICEF / Ukraine / 2015 / P. Zmey

Mothers with children receiving hygiene kits provided by UNICEF. Kramatorsk, Ukraine. February 2015

Olga is one of the many young mothers forced to flee from homes with their children to escape continuous shelling. Olga and her children were amongst those who received hygiene kits delivered by UNICEF to the volunteer’s centre in Kramatorsk.

"We come from Donetsk. I have four children: Anna (10 years), Anastasia (8 years), Timothy (5 years) and Nadezhda (11 months). We need diapers for my little baby in order not to spoil the furniture of the apartment we rent in Kramatorsk. Diapers are such a basic thing for us and so important for us! Prices for diapers have increased enormously and it is increasingly getting difficult for us to afford such a basic item.” - says the mother holding her little girl.

©UNICEF / Ukraine / 2015 / P. Zmey

Children and families lack basic hygiene supplies and safe drinking water. They are staying in line to get wash kits from UNICEF. Kramatorsk, Ukraine, February 2015.

Another family who arrived to Sviatohirsk from Debaltseve has been without safe drinking water for several weeks. “We were melting snow to get at least some water and stay alive. Water supply and sewerage systems in our city were destroyed by the heavy shelling. We could not take a bath for days and that was such a difficult situation for all and especially for the families with small children,” – said Lena from Debaltseve. Drinking water and hygiene supplies provided by UNICEF and its partners has been one of the first thing people needed upon their arrival from their forced journey.



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