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Useful 10:45 20 Nov 2022

Helping children during war: how to get aid and how it works?

On World Children's Day, we explain who and how is helping children in Ukraine now: from humanitarian and medical aid to mental and educational support.

What is the problem?

Since February 24, the lives of Ukrainian children have changed forever. Today, every Ukrainian child needs more support than ever. russian invaders occupied part of Ukraine's east and south, where children suffer from a lack of drinking water, food, and medicine; they are unable to study adequately, receive medical treatment, and freeze in half-destroyed houses with no heating. More than 11,000 young Ukrainians were illegally deported— taken to russia or the temporarily occupied territories of Ukraine. Shelling of residential buildings, hospitals, and educational institutions continues in the frontline areas. Tens of thousands of families of internally displaced people with children have to build a life "from scratch." With limited resources, they try to provide children with basic needs, education, and leisure time, to restore children's psyche destroyed by the war. 

As a result of the russian federation's full-scale armed aggression, 437 children died, and 838 were injured. Three thousand one hundred eighty-two children were left without parental care, and 541 lost their parents or had no contact with them.

Even in the deep rear, no child is entirely safe as air raid sirens sound every day throughout the territory of Ukraine, and any place in our country can become another target for russian missiles.

russia's military aggression brought loss, mutilation, uncertainty, fear, and anxiety into the children's lives. Our children have lost the usual routine and regularity of life. And the worst thing is that every one of the 7.5 million Ukrainian children was touched by the war in one way or another. Since February, they have been all children of war forever. 

What is the solution?

We must save and protect the smallest Ukrainians, who will become the future of our country. War has no weekends and holidays, and children need help every day. Today, charity funds come to the aid of Ukrainians. To find out how, where, and what kind of support you can get, read the selection prepared by Rubryka.

How does it work?

Humanitarian aid

Happy Child

Допомога дітям під час війни: як отримати і як це працює

The Happy Child Charity Fund was established in 2007 as an association of like-minded people who decided to help the most underprivileged children of the Zaporizhzhia region together. Its creators were young Zaporizhzhia residents and volunteers. Today, the fund actively assists Ukrainian families with children who lived or are living in war-torn Donetsk, Kherson, and Zaporizhzhia regions until February 24 or even now.

By applying to the fund, you can receive financial assistance, food, necessities, and things for children—diapers, baby food, etc., and support in the children's medical treatment.

The fund pays special attention to evacuating families with children to safer regions of Ukraine and abroad. The fund will help pay for travel by train, bus, and other types of transport in the territory of Ukraine and Europe (that is, you will not worry about travel expenses). In addition, the fund will share available information about asylums, shelters, housing, transport, and living conditions in different countries. And they will also refer to local organizations that help refugees from Ukraine.

SOS Children's Villages

Допомога дітям під час війни: як отримати і як це працює

The SOS Children's Villages Ukraine Charity Fund has been operating in the territory of Ukraine for 18 years. This organization engaged in a comprehensive approach to the problem of orphanhood before the full-scale war. The organization's primary activity was to prevent children from getting to orphanages, instead to support foster families and family-type children's homes. 

Since the beginning of russia's full-scale invasion of the territory of Ukraine, the charity organization SOS Children's Villages has significantly expanded the list of its responsibilities. Today, here the following groups can receive multi-purpose assistance:

  • families with children who suffered from the war;
  • children who lost their parents or guardians due to the war;
  • children in orphanages and other institutions;
  • families with children with disabilities and special educational needs;
  • families with children with chronic/severe diseases;
  • single parents;
  • families when at least one parent has a disability;
  • pregnant women 

The fund helps with evacuation and accommodation. It provides psychosocial support and humanitarian aid, supplying necessary food products, non-food products, and medicines. It also implements advocacy initiatives to change policies and practices that affect the well-being of children at risk of losing parental care and those who've already been left without parents, helping to bring deported russian children home. 

"We want every child in Ukraine to have a chance to become a happy adult. Today, our life is unpredictable, but faith in a happy future and people's support gives us the strength not to stop on our way," the foundation says.

In Mother's Palms

Допомога дітям під час війни: як отримати і як це працює

Mother's Palms provides humanitarian assistance to mothers with children who have found themselves in difficult life circumstances due to the war. If you have a child and have lost your job and found yourself in a challenging situation as a result of military operations in Ukraine; you are in a flashpoint under shelling, were forced to leave your home as a result of shelling or house destruction; moved to other regions of Ukraine from occupied or de-occupied settlements, you can apply for help from this fund. 

Applications for assistance are accepted in the following directions:

  • Diapers and hygiene products.
  • Medicines for children and mothers.
  • Baby food.
  • Product sets for mother and child.
  • Toys, sweets, educational and development materials for children.

As of today, more than 7,500 mothers and children have received an assistance package from the fund.

Club Dobrodiyiv

Допомога дітям під час війни: як отримати і як це працює

Children's Aid Fund Dobrodiy Club supports families in conditional physical safety but who found themselves on the verge of survival, having lost their jobs and homes. The Dobrodiy Club buys essential hygiene products and products for families with charitable contributions and helps to equip family-type homes. During the eight months of the full-scale war, the Dobrodiy Club has already processed 10,000 applications for assistance to families with children! Community volunteers also conduct workshops and online classes for children. And the children thank the volunteers with their drawings and smiles. The foundation admits: "Sometimes we don't understand who is helping whom: are we helping the children or are they helping us through the dark times?"

Mom Plus Me

Допомога дітям під час війни: як отримати і як це працює

The Mom Plus Me Charitable Foundation in Dnipro has been taking care of orphans since 2007, cooperating with children's institutions and hospitals, holding festivals, and supporting the talents of orphans. The foundation's primary goal was to give a chance for a successful future to children left without parents. With the start of a full-scale war at the beginning of 2022, the foundation helps all children of Ukraine: displaced people, large and low-income families, orphans—everyone who needs help. From February 24, the foundation's employees work in 5 major areas:

  • Directly helping families with children with food products, hygiene products, baby food, diapers, etc.
  • Collecting and sending humanitarian aid to people in flashpoints and temporarily occupied settlements.
  • Giving children back their childhood—giving gifts, organizing holidays, making their dreams come true, and providing psychological support.
  • Help Dnipro hospitals as part of the Health project—buying and handing over medicines, special food for seriously ill children, and medical and surgical supplies.
  • Supporting shelters, asylums, orphanages, and foster homes—together with benefactors, they donate food, hygiene products, medicines, equipment, furniture, etc.

Caritas Ukraine

Допомога дітям під час війни: як отримати і як це працює

The word "Caritas" means love and mercy, compassion and charity. Caritas Ukraine is one of the largest international networks of charitable organizations worldwide and in Europe. The work of Caritas Ukraine is focused on six main areas:

  • Helping children, youth, and families in crisis;
  • Health care;
  • Assistance to people with special needs;
  • Social problems of migration;
  • Assistance in emergencies;
  • Development of communities.

All local Caritas organizations, except those in regions with active hostilities, work to assist internally displaced persons (IDPs) and vulnerable individuals during a full-scale war. In particular, you can get consultations (services) from a lawyer, child and adult psychologists, and a crisis consultant. 

Child-friendly Spaces operate based on the foundation, where children attend informative, creative, and entertaining master classes. The fund provides humanitarian aid in the form of food and hygiene kits, diapers, baby food, and cash grants for hygiene and food products. The center's specialists also conduct developmental classes for children and youth with disabilities. 

"We continue to make every effort to help people who were forced to leave their homes with the most necessary things, and we also admire the solidarity of Ukrainians ready to help and share with those in need. Everyone is called to be a gift for other people," says the foundation's president, Tetiana Stavnycha.

Children of Heroes

Допомога дітям під час війни: як отримати і як це працює

The Children of Heroes Charity Fund was created to provide long-term support to children who lost one or both parents as a result of russia's war in Ukraine. The fund assists in six areas, which include psychological, legal, financial, medical, emergency assistance, and socialization. 

The aid is not only for an emergency but also strategic. The foundation undertakes to support each child until they reach adulthood, and even after that, to accompany them in the educational organization to provide opportunities for internships and work. "This is our contribution to forming a strong and healthy Ukrainian society," the foundation emphasizes.

Currently, Children of Heroes cares for 1,154 children who lost one or both parents due to the war. In total, the foundation wants to take care of 5,000 children, so it is actively looking for the wards to help them survive the loss of their loved ones and provide them with the necessary things.

Psychological help

Voices of Children

Допомога дітям під час війни: як отримати і як це працює

The Voices Children Charity Fund says that no child should be left alone with war trauma. The fund's current activities are as follows:

  • Psychological assistance to children and parents affected by the war;
  • Emergency assistance to women and children—IDPs from all over Ukraine—with basic necessities, accommodation, and relocation;
  • Creation of centers for conducting group classes with children who were evacuated from shelling;
  • Individual assistance to families with children affected by the war.

Voices of Children is 48 professional psychologists, two mobile psychological assistance teams in the Kyiv and Mykolaiv regions, and 645 volunteers who responded from all over the world. The fund has six locations in Kyiv, Lviv, Chernivtsi, Ivano-Frankivsk, Truskavets, and Berehove, where specialists and volunteers of the fund are constantly working. To give children a voice, the foundation's team creates video content and promotes children's rights to change the country's system of protecting children's rights.

The foundation is convinced that every child should be heard and their rights should be protected. If your child needs psychological support, contact the foundation's specialists.

Gen.Ukrainian 

Допомога дітям під час війни: як отримати і як це працює

Gen.Ukrainian is a public organization of like-minded people and philanthropists who have united to help the children of Ukraine. The initiative was created to do its best to overcome the psychological trauma of children who faced the horrors of war. Here, children who survived the war events which traumatized them—witnessed murders, survived shelling, were under occupation, were subjected to violence, and lost their parents and relatives—are treated here.

To rehabilitate children from flashpoints this summer, a non-governmental organization created a Gen.Camp (treatment at the camp is free), where they gathered the best child psychotherapy practitioners. A comprehensive psychological rehabilitation program for a child includes individual and group therapy, cognitive-behavioral therapy, art therapy, animal therapy, and therapy with the Tomatis device, with a personal program for each child. In the camp, specialists help children overcome the trauma of war and regain the joy of childhood. The NGO is confident that the future needs to be restored now.

La Strada-Ukraine

Допомога дітям під час війни: як отримати і як це працює

The NGO La Strada-Ukraine created the social campaign With You 24/7 to tell all Ukrainians, all children, and mothers who were forced to leave abroad due to the war in Ukraine, and children, teenagers, and young people who remain in different regions of Ukraine: "You are not alone! You have a place to turn to for psychological support and help wherever you are now."

  • I feel depressed.
  • I miss home.
  • I am bullied at school.
  • I broke down again.
  • I am fearful for my parents.
  • I have no friends.
  • I don't know what to do.
  • I need to talk.

Children share these and many other acute problems with La Strada psychologists. Specialists of the organization know how to listen and how difficult it is to cope with various situations: "We are there so that you do not feel alone. If you need to talk about your problems, emotions, difficulties, and relationships or simply share your successes and achievements with someone and feel warmth, acceptance, and support, contact the National Hotline for Children and Youth: La Strada-Ukraine

Online resilience workshops by Svitlana Roiz

Допомога дітям під час війни: як отримати і як це працює

Every Tuesday and Friday, NGO Smart Osvita and nus.org.ua conduct online workshops on resilience with children psychologist Svitlana Roiz. 15-minute meetings consist of practical tasks that build stress resistance. Links to workshops are updated here. Together with Ukraine's Ministry of Education, Roiz took part in developing a series of informational videos to provide quick psychological help to a child. In particular, they explain how to take care of a child in a shelter during the evacuation and how to talk to them if the mother or father is defending Ukraine in the armed forces.

Social Assistance Service

Kharkiv Regional Charitable Foundation Social Assistance Service also provides psychological support to children affected by the war. As part of the project called "Group rehabilitation therapy meetings for families with children who suffered from russia's military aggression in Ukraine in 2022," free psychological assistance is provided to war-affected families with children living in Kharkiv and Kharkiv region. The organization offers group and individual therapy sessions designed for adults, children, or families.

You can fill out an application for assistance by following the link.

Stolen Spring

NGO Office of Regional Development within the #VkradenaVesna [Ukrainian, stolen spring] project works with children, parents, as well as teachers of Kyiv, Odesa, Mykolaiv, Kirovohrad, and Vinnytsia regions

  • creating an inclusive environment to overcome the direct impact of the war, which children suffered as a result of russia's armed aggression in Ukraine;
  • forming a culture of communication with displaced children who have post-traumatic syndrome;
  • teaching to understand the needs and emotions of children who've suffered psychological trauma;
  • developing a safe environment, teaching children to overcome emotional swings in the educational process, and communicating with their peers.

By studying, Ukrainian teachers and educators can create a safe environment for children traumatized by the war. It will be possible to apply for participation soon.

Medical assistance

Тabletochki

Допомога дітям під час війни: як отримати і як це працює

Tabletochki is a charitable foundation helping children with cancer in Ukraine since 2011. Before the full-scale war, more than 500 families and 21 children's oncology departments throughout the country were under the care of the foundation every month. Over 6,500 families received targeted assistance during the foundation's operation.

During the full-scale invasion by the russian army, Tabletochki, as part of the global initiative SAFER Ukraine, helped evacuate more than 1,000 families with children with cancer and children with severe blood diseases to leading clinics in the USA, Canada, and Europe. During all months of the war, Tabletochki continues to assist children with cancer and their families in Ukraine and abroad. 

The fund also supports projects of partner volunteer organizations to provide medical and humanitarian aid to hospitals in the east of the country and Ukrainians in temporarily occupied and liberated territories.

Tvoya Opora

Допомога дітям під час війни: як отримати і як це працює

The Tvoya Opora charity foundation was founded in 2014. It was created to help seriously ill children and orphans. Currently, the fund works in the following directions:

  • Assisting children with congenital heart defects is the largest project of the fund. Within its framework, they gave supported medical institutions in Ukraine. Under the patronage of the foundation are 67 hospitals in 20 regions of Ukraine—both front-line hospitals and medical facilities in relatively calmer areas;
  • assistance and care of orphanages;
  • targeted assistance

The foundation's mission is to return joy and freedom of life to children. "If we undertake to help, we do not abandon our wards. In the fight against adversity, we forever become their support because we do not constantly understand one-time help where it is needed. We act for the benefit of children," the foundation emphasizes.

Kiddo

Допомога дітям під час війни: як отримати і як це працює

Since 2013, the Kiddo Charity Fund has helped Ukrainian families fight severe diseases, and doctors to save children's lives. Nine years ago, successful women in business, primarily mothers, decided that they could help children whose lives directly depended on the availability of expensive drugs, surgery, or a course of rehabilitation.

Since the first days of the full-scale war, the Kiddo team has not stopped working on the foundation's system projects. But the present war opened up new areas of activity for the fund.

The project team was engaged in the re-equipment of hospitals and clinics, completed tactical first-aid kits and medical backpacks for the Ukrainian Armed Forces, helped relocate families with children who needed treatment and could not stay in the country, delivered humanitarian aid and drinking water, supported and provided necessary supplies to pregnant women. Today, the fund's primary activities are:

  • targeted assistance to children with complex diagnoses;
  • purchase and transfer of equipment, consumables, and medicines to departments of children's hospitals;
  • provision of hospitals with medications and consumables necessary for the treatment of children in severe conditions after injuries, for emergency operations and emergency care;
  • professional development and training of doctors.

The Kiddo team's primary goal is a world without children's tears, pain, and danger.

Even more helpful solutions!

Education and leisure

Even during the war, special educational initiatives allow for continuing the educational process according to Ukraine's state standards and educational programs. They can be used by children who remain in Ukraine and evacuated outside our country.

Допомога дітям під час війни: як отримати і як це працює

  • The All-Ukrainian online school is a Ukrainian national online platform for mixed and distance learning of students and organized support for teachers of 5-11 grades. The platform contains video lessons, tests, and materials for independent work in 18 main subjects. All educational content corresponds to the current state educational programs, and the Ukrainian Institute for Education Development checks its quality. The Ministry of Education and Science of Ukraine proposes the list and topics of the courses.

Children can use the platform during distance learning and familiarize themselves with a topic they missed at school due to illness or other reasons. For teachers, recommendations have been developed for conducting mixed and distance learning using the educational materials of the platform.

The All-Ukrainian online school aims to provide every Ukrainian student and teacher with equal and free access to high-quality educational content. You can learn how to use the platform here.

Допомога дітям під час війни: як отримати і як це працює

  • The SpivDiia.Dity project is an educational project that provides all willing children from 5 to 12 years of age with the opportunity to develop, learn about the world through active games, creativity, and live communication, and receive support from professional mentors during classes.

All mentors have experience working with children and conduct classes in three main areas: activity, creativity, and STEAM. (STEAM is an educational activity where children get interesting new information about the world around them).

The team of the SpivDiia charitable foundation, with the support of UNICEF and the Ministry of Youth and Sports of Ukraine, implements the project. It has been working for eight months to provide Ukrainian children with the opportunity to receive quality non-formal education and a safe space where they can just be themselves.

Resources with school textbooks:

  • Electronic textbooks and educational materials from the International Ukrainian School of the Ministry of Education and Science of Ukraine;
  • Free books for students abroad;
  • A list of electronic textbooks for schoolchildren collected by the Institute for the Modernization of the Content of Education;
  • Nova Shkola is a YouTube channel with multimedia textbooks from grades 1 to 11.

URRF IREX РУБРИКА

This article was created by the Rubryka online publication within the Ukraine Rapid Response Fund program, implemented by IREX with the support of the US State Department. The content is the sole responsibility of the Rubryka online publication and does not necessarily reflect the views of IREX or the US State Department.

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