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European Neighbourhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations (DG NEAR)
News article4 August 2022Directorate-General for Neighbourhood and Enlargement Negotiations2 min read

European Union and UNDP support Ukrainian civil society in emergency response


Nineteen civil society organisations (CSOs) have started implementing projects to address the urgent needs among conflict-affected communities.  

Under the EU4Dialogue program, the European Union and UNDP awarded first 19 grants to the civil society organisations to support the first-line response and recovery among women and men from especially hard-to-reach and vulnerable communities in Ukraine. Selected projects cover psychological, legal and administrative aid provision to both IDPs and their host communities, as well as frontline communities, including the areas where the government of Ukraine regained control. In partnership with the civil society, UNDP helps bridge the gap between local authorities, humanitarian organisations and the most vulnerable groups, to ensure fair, inclusive and effective delivery of humanitarian and recovery assistance.

“The EU is working on all fronts to support Ukraine and its people. Since the Russian aggression started, the EU has mobilised around €6.8 billion to support Ukraine's overall economic, social and financial resilience in the form of macro-financial assistance, budget support, emergency assistance, crisis response and humanitarian aid,” said Lawrence Meredith, Director of Neighbourhood East and Institution Building at DG NEAR, European Commission.

“In addition, we have been tapping into our ongoing cooperation programmes to respond to the immediate needs on the ground. Within the framework of EU4Dialogue, we aim to support those civil society initiatives that are providing relevant assistance to the most vulnerable and conflict-affected people in their communities.”

“Since the first day of the war, UNDP has scaled up support to the people of Ukraine, focusing on immediate crisis response, maintaining core government functions and laying the groundwork for early recovery,” said Manal Fouani, acting UNDP Resident Representative in Ukraine. “We also focus on resilience and development for the millions of displaced people who have fled the violence, and engagement of the civil society in this work is critical for ensuring the support is immediately available to the people in need.”

The projects will be implemented across Ukraine in Donetsk, Dnipro, Kharkiv, Khmelnytskyi, Lviv, Poltava, Rivne, Sumy, Vinnytsia, Zakarpattia, and Zaporizhzhia oblasts. For instance, NGO “Pokrovsk Society of the Blind” will work to ensure communities in Donetsk Oblast have access to clean drinking water. Another project in Donetsk Oblast by the Center for Local Community Development NGO aims at creating a hotline for the residents near the contact line.

According to the latest estimates, almost 6.3 million Ukrainians have been displaced inside the country, while around 5.5 million have fled for temporary protection to neighbouring countries. As estimated by OCHA, nearly 16 million people in Ukraine are in immediate need of humanitarian aid.

The EU and UNDP agreed to redirect the funds of the EU4Dialogue project to address the most urgent needs of conflict-affected communities in Ukraine. The regional project aims to contribute towards building a durable foundation for conflict transformation by creating better socio-economic conditions and improving human security for conflict-affected communities.

The grant competition  “Civil society response to the needs of women and men, especially hard-to-reach and vulnerable groups” is still ongoing. Up to forty CSOs in total will be supported within the competition. UNDP Ukraine invites civil society organizations to submit their proposals.