Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal Latest updates

Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal Latest updates

The Guardian: Women who fled Ukraine agonise over when to return

8 August 2022

A recent survey of Ukrainian refugees in seven countries by the United Nations high commissioner for refugees found that while most wanted to return to Ukraine eventually, only 16% planned to do so imminently.

Kompaniets and her family decided to leave Budapest and return home in June, but then a missile hit a nearby town and they put their plans on hold. 

“Every day my conscience is crying out that we are sitting here, I want to get back home and help out in any way I can,” said Kompaniets. The family is staying in a safe house run by Hungarian Interchurch Aid (HIA). 

DEC funds are supporting HIA's work inside Ukraine, and will continue to support refugees and displaced people for months and years to come, whatever the future holds.

i newspaper readers help give children in Ukraine a chance to laugh again

1 August 2022

Bodhana* plays with her son, Kuzma*, at the Centre for Development and Socialisation in Lviv, Ukraine

Bodhana* plays with her son Kuzma* at the Centre for Development and Socialisation in Lviv, Ukraine.

A shelter in a sports hall in Lviv in western Ukraine is abuzz with the noise of laughter, chatter and cheers, as Kristina* proudly watches her 10-year-old son Danylo* play table tennis with other displaced children.

It is thanks to the amazing generosity of the UK public - including i newspaper readers who have raised more than £857,833 for the DEC appeal - that families like Kristina’s are able to find safety and solace after having their lives ripped apart by the conflict.

The i newpaper has partnered with the DEC to support our appeal. Saleh Saeed, DEC chief executive said, “I would personally like to thank i news readers for the extraordinary generosity they have given to the DEC’s Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal."

Sports activities help displaced families in Lviv

29 July 2022

The day conflict broke out in Ukraine, this sports hall in Lviv was one of the many public building to provide shelter to displaced families. Since then, it has been a temporary home to over a thousand people. 

DEC charity Christian Aid and their local partner Hungarian Interchurch Aid began by supporting people with food, hygiene and shelter items. Staff and volunteers then asked families what other support they needed and the majority said they wanted to keep active as spending so much time indoors was affecting their physical and mental wellbeing.

Today, the centre is alive with sports facilities and activities taking place for all ages. Families like Kristina's say this is helping them to stay active, healthy, and take their minds off of their situation.

School pupils release video of uplifting New Order song to raise funds

14 July 2022

School pupils from St Matthew’s RC School in Manchester are releasing an uplifting take on New Order’s song ‘Ceremony’ this week, in support of the DEC Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal.

After discussing their feelings and worries about the conflict in Ukraine, pupils in Year 7, 8 and 9 enlisted the help of their music teacher and approached New Order to ask for permission to perform and release their own version of the band’s song, ‘Ceremony’, originally recorded in 1981.

Steve Millington, Head of Music at the school said, “When the conflict in Ukraine began, students were obviously disturbed by the images they’d seen... They came up with the idea of performing a song to raise awareness of the refugee crisis... I'd like to really thank New Order; they’ve allowed us to use the track, copyright free. They've been amazing.”

Taiwo Uthman, aged 14, said, “We've put our heart into this and what we'd like to see is people sharing the video and raising money for the refugees."

Shan Burhan, aged 13, said, “I joined this project because I like music and I think it can change people's lives... And giving to charity made me feel less anxious."

Ukraine conflict puts further strain on health facilities

28 June 2022

Around 20 people are reported to have been killed and dozens injured in a shopping mall in Kremenchuk, central-eastern Ukraine, as the conflict continues to devastate lives and put a strain on Ukraine's healthcare system.

Even before the conflict, health facilities in Ukraine were already under strain from the Covid-19 pandemic and years of under-investment. The urgent need to treat trauma patients is disrupting the provision of basic essential services, with the conflict driving shortages of staff and medical supplies at the same time as it creates a spike in public health risks due to displacement and poor shelter. 

DEC charities and their local partners are supporting primary healthcare services, providing trauma and first aid kits, surgical training, medicines, drugs, as well as supporting healthcare facilities with equipment such as incubators and oxygen compressors and vital pharmaceutical products. 

Cash vouchers help families in Romania buy essential supplies

24 June 2022

DEC funds are ensuring refugees in Romania receive cash vouchers that allow them to buy food and other essentials, according to their specific needs.

Saleh Saeed, Chief Executive of the DEC, visited some of families being supported by DEC charities in Bucharest, thanks to donations to the Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal.

Volunteer cyclists deliver food baskets in Kharkiv

9 June 2022

In Kharkiv, Ukraine's second largest city, DEC funds are supporting an innovative project that delivers regular food baskets to people's homes, thanks to a network of volunteer cyclists. 

The idea was born after fuel shortages threatened to impact aid deliveries. One volunteer, desperate to find a way to send food to her friend, put out a message on social media that spread among friends who remained in Kharkiv with their bicycles.

The cycling team's efforts are now a lifeline for 700 housebound people.

Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal raises £350 million

9 June 2022

An incredible £350 million has been raised so far

Three months after it was launched, the DEC Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal has raised £350 million. 

Donations to the appeal are continuing to fund work by DEC charities and their local partners in Ukraine and in neighbouring countries, meeting people's immediate and longer term needs. 

UK public's generous response to DEC’s Ukraine appeal sets new Guinness World Records title

11 May 2022

Simon Beresford Director of Fundraising and Marketing at the DEC holds the award certificate

The UK public response to the DEC Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal has set a new Guinness World Records title for the most money raised by an online campaign in one week. Following the incredibly generous support from the British public a staggering £61,997,547 was donated online between 3-10 March 2022.  

This is the second time the DEC has achieved a Guinness World Records title - the first being in 2004, following the Boxing Day Tsunami when £10,676,836 was raised online in just 24 hours.  

Simon Beresford, Director of Fundraising and Marketing for the DEC said: “At the DEC we have been overwhelmed by the incredible generosity and outpouring of support from the UK public to the people of Ukraine. It has been heart-warming to see the inspiring fundraising efforts which are ongoing, with donations flooding in from individuals, companies, schools and arts organisations across the UK.  

“We are of course proud and delighted to have taken a part in setting a new world record. However, most importantly what this means is that with the help of the generous UK public DEC charities and their local partners can scale up to respond to help the people of Ukraine.”  

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge meet DEC aid workers as Ukraine appeal reaches £300 million

21 April 2022

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge at the DEC office

The DEC welcomed the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge to its London offices today as it was announced that the Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal has raised over £300 million. 

The Duke and Duchess met aid workers who have recently returned from Ukraine and neighbouring countries. They also spoke to staff in Ukraine via video link to get a clearer picture of the current situation and hear about how aid is helping people in need.

The visit came as the 13 member charities of the DEC that are responding to the crisis laid out plans for their response over the first six months.

Thank you for supporting the DEC Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal

3 April 2022

It's been one month since the launch of the DEC Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal and the response has been incredible.

Thank you for your generosity, and for putting your trust in us.

DEC Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal reaches £260m after stars perform at Concert for Ukraine

30 March 2022

Concert for Ukraine

The DEC Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal has raised a total of £260 million following the Concert for Ukraine in Birmingham on 29 March, which raised over £13.4 million.

The concert, featuring artists including Ed Sheeran, Camila Cabello, Paloma Faith, Gregory Porter, Emeli Sandé, Nile Rodgers and Chic, and Ukrainian singer and former Eurovision winner Jamala, was broadcast live on ITV and STV, and streamed on ITV Hub.  

The event raised funds for the DEC and saw a surge in donations as 3.6 million people tuned in. Profits from ticket sales and an estimated £3 million in advertising revenue from ITV will also be donated to help DEC charities provide emergency aid to people fleeing the conflict Ukraine.

Concert for Ukraine

22 March 2022

On Tuesday 29 March 2022, a line-up of presenters and artists will come together for a live concert at Resorts World Arena, Birmingham.

ITV, STV, Livewire Pictures and the media and entertainment group Global will stage a two hour concert raising money for the DEC Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal.

Ed Sheeran, Camila Cabello, Emeli Sandé, Snow Patrol and Gregory Porter will be among those performing at the televised fundraiser.

Ukraine appeal reaches £200 million in two weeks

17 March 2022

200m graphic Ukraine

The Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal has reached £200 million in the two weeks since it was launched - the equivalent of £3 for every person in the UK.

The staggering total reflects the hugely generous response of the UK public towards people affected by the conflict in Ukraine, where the devastating conflict continues to force people to flee their homes and cross the border into neighbouring countries.

The number of refugees has passed 3 million, with almost 2 million more people displaced inside Ukraine as intense fighting, shelling and air strikes continue across Ukraine, affecting many civilian areas and destroying homes and vital infrastructure such as hospitals, schools and water supplies. 

Donations to the appeal are funding work by DEC charities and their local partners inside Ukraine and in neighbouring countries. They are helping people with their immediate needs while also planning to support refugees and displaced people over the coming months and years. 

“This amazing total shows what’s possible when we all come together as charities, as communities, as a country, to help people who are facing unimaginable hardships," said Sue Inglish, DEC Chair of Trustees. "Thank you so much to everyone who has leant their support to this appeal."

Afghan family in Ukraine forced to flee conflict for a second time in eight months

12 March 2022

An Afghan man and his son after fleeing to Romania from Ukraine

Samad* and his father after arriving in Romania. Pedro Armestre/Save the Children

An Afghan family who escaped violence in Afghanistan last year have been forced to flee for a second time after conflict broke out in Ukraine.

When the conflict escalated in Afghanistan in July 2021, 14-year-old Samad* and his family fled from Afghanistan to Ukraine, where they were rebuilding their lives.

“It was a very big thing for me to come from war, and live in a peaceful place,” says Samad about his experience of resettling in Ukraine. “This was very good for me and my family. I made friends... I came to school. And the people were very kind.”

The family could never have imagined that just months later their new lives would be shattered by war for a second time. Once again, they were forced to abandon everything they owned and flee – this time to Romania.

They drove for more than 30 hours on crowded roads before waiting for three days at the border, sleeping in their car while temperatures plummeted outside.

The overwhelming feeling of relief when Samad and his family crossed the border was sadly all too familiar. “Just like when I came to Kyiv, the feeling was the same when I came to Romania.”

DEC charity Save the Children is working at the reception centre where Samad and his family are staying and is supporting them with information and guidance, clothes, and shoes. You can help support families like Samad's fleeing the conflict in Ukraine by donating below.

*Name changed to protect identity

DEC’s charities warn of long road ahead after ‘horrifying’ hospital bombing

10 March 2022

A children’s and maternity hospital in Mariupol, Eastern Ukraine, was severely damaged in fighting there, underscoring the devastating effect the conflict is having on civilians, particularly children. 

Commenting on the bombing of the hospital, Save the Children’s Eastern Europe Director, Irina Saghoyan said: “It’s horrifying that a place people seek for help has become one of absolute and utter destruction. Where can families and children turn to if even hospitals are not safe?”
More than 2.3 million people have fled Ukraine since the conflict began, leaving their homes, jobs and loved ones. It’s estimated that half of the refugees are children. The UN estimates that 12 million are in need of life-saving assistance - 30% of the population. 

The public’s incredible generosity in giving to the DEC’s appeal - which has raised £150 million in its first week - is enabling DEC charities and their local partners to respond immediately to urgent needs both inside Ukraine and on its borders. But charities are also eyeing the long-term consequences of the destruction that’s causing so many to flee. 

DEC Chief Executive Saleh Saeed said: “We are in this for the long term, for families who have lost everything, whose homes have been bombed and livelihoods lost. The destruction of vital infrastructure such as hospitals – as well as causing terrible suffering now - painfully demonstrates the lasting impact that this conflict will have and just why so many people are fleeing. We’re incredibly grateful for the outpouring of support that we’ve seen from the British public that will allow DEC charities to help now and be there to rebuild lives in the months and years to come."

The BBC report below shows the aftermath of the bombing as well as other damage to Mariupol, which staff from the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) have described as “apocalypic”. “This is a city going without the very basics of survival,” says ICRC spokeswoman Crystal Wells. “No food, no water, no heat. The temperatures are freezing.”

Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal raises £150m in first week

10 March 2022

150m graphic

The British public has helped to raise over £150 million in a single week for the Disaster Emergency Committee’s Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal, including £25 million matched by the UK Government, in an inspiring demonstration of support for people fleeing the conflict. 

The fundraising effort has spread right across society, with schools, companies, arts organisations, celebrities and sports events all coming together to lend their support the appeal. Last night an event featuring Bob Geldof, Chrissie Hynde and Franz Ferdinand was held at the Roundhouse in London with proceeds going to the appeal. British Airways and the RFU have arranged a collection at Twickenham Stadium on Saturday as England face Ireland in the Six Nations, while the Royal Mail has added a postmark stamped on letters to highlight the appeal. 

'Why women and children fleeing Ukraine need your support'

9 March 2022

Helen Pankhurst, Senior Gender Advisor at DEC charity CARE International, has written an article for the Evening Standard on why women and children fleeing Ukraine need your support. Here's how it starts:

With every day that passes, the people who are fleeing their homes in Ukraine are more traumatised and more vulnerable. These are the people who thought and hoped the conflict might all be over quickly, or those for whom it felt impossible to leave. Now, even they are compelled to make that terrible journey in freezing temperatures, away from their homes and from their normal life.

Filippo Grandi, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, has called it a ‘human avalanche’ but an avalanche, while devastating, is over relatively quickly. Humanitarians know there will be no swift resolution to the humanitarian disaster unfolding in Ukraine and on the borders of its neighbours.

Child cancer patients among those to flee the conflict

7 March 2022

Nobody is spared the escalating conflict in Ukraine. Even those who were already facing the most challenging of circumstances – the elderly, the disabled, the infirm – are having to flee for their lives. In this harrowing film BBC Europe Correspondent Mark Lowen reports on the child cancer patients now being evacuated. “These children were already fighting one battle: against cancer,” says Lowen. “And now they’ve had to be evacuated... Young, defenceless victims now facing trauma on two fronts.”

£100m raised to support DEC’s Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal as charities scale up response

7 March 2022

£100m raised

The British public has helped raise £100 million in just four days to support the Disaster Emergency Committee’s Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal – the equivalent of more than £1 million an hour since the official launch on Thursday.

More than 1.5 million people have been forced to flee Ukraine due to the conflict, and many more have fled their homes inside the country. Most of the refugees are women and children. The UN estimates up to 4 million people may be forced leave the country and 7 million may lose their homes inside Ukraine. 

13 DEC member charities are working to meet the immediate needs of all people fleeing with food, water, medical assistance, protection and trauma care in Ukraine and across the border in neighbouring countries, either directly or through local partners. The charities have already started to use funds to deliver this vital aid and scale up their response. 

Jo Kitterick, Head of Supporter Engagement at DEC member charity CAFOD, said, "This amazing show of support for people fleeing the conflict has meant that we have been able to start spending money straight away to help more people... in their moment of greatest need."

BBC report: 'The perils of fleeing Ukraine'

6 March 2022

The BBC's Fergal Keane reports from Lviv on those fleeing Ukraine, including children with special needs and health conditions. “Their distress is difficult to watch... Just when you think this [conflict] cannot get any more obscene in the way that it ruptures human lives, no matter how young, it does: and the sobering sad thought is that it will continue to do so... They’ve been travelling 30 hours already. There are many more hours ahead."

Drone footage shows damage to civilian buildings near Kyiv

4 March 2022

Drone footage shared by Reuters has captured the aftermath of a battle in a residential area near Kyiv. The severe damage to some of the apartment buildings gives a vivid reminder of why more than a million people have fled the country since the conflict began.

'We must get humanitarian aid to those left inside Ukrainian cities'

4 March 2022

With charities scaling up to respond to what looks set to become the biggest refugee crisis this century, in this opinion piece published today in The Times, chief executive of the DEC Saleh Saeed stressed how urgent it was that aid continued to reach civilians that were unable to flee. 

As many as 6.7 million people are expected to be internally displaced in the conflict. “Many of the most vulnerable will find it hard or impossible to escape the fighting: the elderly, the infirm, the poor,” Saeed wrote. “A huge humanitarian crisis is already unfolding within Ukraine’s borders.” 

Saeed detailed the ways in which DEC member charities are already responding directly or through local partners within Ukraine “despite incredibly challenging circumstances.”


DEC Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal raises £55m in its first 24 hours following extraordinary outpouring of public support

4 March 2022

£55m raised

The UK has raised  £55 million on its first day, including generous donations from Her Majesty The Queen, HRH The Prince of Wales and HRH The Duke of Cambridge, and £20 million donated by the UK Government as part of its UK Aid Match scheme. 

DEC Chief Executive Saleh Saeed thanked the British public, the Royal Family, the UK Government, broadcast partners and celebrities for their support. He urged people to continue to donate, saying “the need is great, and the response needed is likely to run into months and years.” 

Saeed underscored that DEC is the most effective way to support those in urgent need. “While wanting to collect clothes and other items for people in need is laudable, the things people give today may not be what people need tomorrow. Donating through the DEC is the most helpful way people can assist.” 

DEC charities and their local partners are in Ukraine and across the border in the neighbouring countries, working to meet the immediate needs of all people fleeing with food, water, medical assistance, protection and trauma care.

DEC film on the humanitarian situation in Ukraine

3 March 2022

Conflict in Ukraine has forced over a million people to flee. Leaving behind jobs, belongings and loved ones. People are cold, hungry and heartbroken. DEC charities are in Ukraine and on the borders meeting people's urgent needs.

BBC Broadcasts DEC Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal

3 March 2022

Trigger Point and Hustle star Adrian Lester presented this appeal BBC One.

ITV broadcasts DEC Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal

3 March 2022

Game of Thrones and Eternals star Kit Harington presented this appeal broadcast on ITV, Channel 4 and Channel 5 and Sky.

Harington said “Thousands of people in Ukraine have fled their homes to escape conflict – leaving behind loved ones, homes and jobs. These people urgently need shelter, food and water. With your help DEC charities can help families affected by this crisis. Please donate now at”

DEC launches Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal

3 March 2022

Saleh Saeed, chief executive of the DEC, launches the DEC Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal

Saleh Saeed, CEO of the DEC, at the press conference to launch the Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal

The DEC has launched an urgent appeal to raise funds to help those forced to flee their homes in Ukraine in what is predicted to be the biggest refugee crisis this century. Appeals to raise funds to support those affected by the conflict will be broadcast on the BBC, ITV, Channel 4, Channel 5 Sky and commercial radio.

More than 1 million people have fled Ukraine in recent days and many more have been displaced inside the country due to intense fighting. Inside Ukraine, homes continue to be destroyed and essential infrastructure such as water supplies, hospitals and schools have been hit.

Speaking at a press conference in central London to launch the appeal, Saleh Saeed, Chief Executive of the DEC, said:  “The unfolding crisis in Ukraine is horrific and heart-breaking.  And the grim reality is that it is likely to get worse.”

The DEC brings together 15 leading aid charities at times of crisis overseas. Thirteen of these are responding in Ukraine and its neighbouring countries who have taken in refugees. Every pound donated by the UK public will be matched by the UK government through its UK Aid Match scheme up to the value of £20 million – the largest commitment ever made to a DEC appeal through UK Aid Match.