DRC in Ukraine: Support for IDP collective centres in Western Ukraine
They fled to save their lives from the war in Ukraine, but now struggle to find a safe place within their country while waiting for peace to return. DRC has mapped the needs of 20+ IDP centres in western Ukraine and 6 have already applied for grants to improve basic living conditions.
/ Lubov from Women's Prospects in Lviv
As part of the emergency response, DRC supports local NGOs to help them improve the conditions of the shelters. Among the NGOs that were supported by DRC is Centre Women's Prospects. On the 26th of February, they organised a shelter for women and children near the railway station in Lviv, western Ukraine. As for now, more than 400 persons found here place for a short-term stay, hot food and the possibility to rest after a long hard trip. Women came here usually with children. They can stay here for some time and figure out what to do next.
"Our shelter is not just a place to sleep. Here people can get away from stress, recover, believe in other ideas," says Lubov, head of the NGO Center for Women's Prospects. “I realized we should launch such a place after I settled people in all my friends’ houses in a day but I kept getting calls for help”.
Previously, the shelter premises were used as an office of Lubov’s friend, but with the outbreak of war in Ukraine, he allowed the NGO to use some rooms as a shelter for free.
"In more than a month, hundreds of people stayed here. Some stay one night, some two, some five. People must be treated with dignity here. I know the conditions in other shelters and they, unfortunately, are much worse," says Lubov.
Up to 50 people can live in this shelter in Lviv at a time, but for a short period. In addition to a place to sleep and free meals, the shelter offers counselling by a psychologist. Also, there are art therapy groups for children. Currently, Lubov sees a need for a long-term type of shelter.