Ukraine - One year of war: Report on DRC's crisis response
I recently visited several areas in southern Ukraine. It is difficult to put into words the extent of the devastation I saw. After many months of intense fighting and shelling, several areas in the south of the country have recently become accessible. There, I saw how entire villages in ruins.
I have seen how the war has destroyed residential areas, schools and critical infrastructure. And people. And I have seen missiles sticking out of the ground close to houses. It is frightening to know what other unexploded remnants of war lie hidden beneath the rubble and snow. The need for mine clearance and long-term humanitarian support is enormous.
At the moment, the need for military support dominates the news, but it is important to stress the immense need for both emergency and long-term humanitarian support. Even if the war ended tomorrow, the humanitarian crisis would continue, and it could take decades for many people to get back on their feet. At the same time, mines and unexploded ordnance will threaten lives and livelihoods far into the future.
In this report, you can read about our work to support displaced Ukrainians in Ukraine, neighbouring countries, Denmark, and the rest of Europe. DRC Danish Refugee Council have reached more than 3 million Ukrainians with emergency aid and assistance the past year.
We also give voice to some of the people whose lives were changed forever on 24 February 2022. People for whom your support has made a huge difference. They share stories of trying to spare children from seeing bodies in the streets, of sheltering from bombs in tiny basement rooms for days and sometimes weeks at a time, and of losing everything and starting over in a foreign country, not knowing if they can ever return home. Nor if they have any home to return to.
According to UNHCR estimates, 17.6 million people in Ukraine are in urgent need of emergency aid. One-third of Ukraine’s 44 million people are either internally displaced or have fled the country. The consequences of the war in Ukraine are many and extend far beyond the country’s borders. The humanitarian situation worsens and needs grow as the war continues.
Thank you very much for your support over the past year. It has made a huge difference.
Secretary General, DRC Danish Refugee Council