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05.15.2024

Ukraine: Kharkiv Evacuations Exacerbate Humanitarian Needs

Washington, DC (15 May 2024) – Russian forces have advanced their offensive in the northern Kharkiv region of Ukraine, which was previously occupied in 2022. The area – including the city of Kharkiv – is experiencing heavy shelling and around 7,000 people have evacuated to date, exacerbating the ongoing humanitarian needs. Project HOPE is supporting communities throughout the region with mobile medical units and ambulances, essential supplies and mental health support.

Ilya Gabrichidze, Project HOPE’s Program Coordinator in Kharkiv, said:
“Now we’re seeing towns in the Kharkiv region fall under Russian occupation once again. As we see an influx of evacuations, there is a need to support communities with water, bedding, hygiene supplies, and fuel. Today, our team delivered 100 hygiene kits to centers housing internally displaced people in the region, and are planning additional deliveries of hygiene supplies, bottled water, and fuel cards in the coming days. We are continuing to operate mobile medical units and ambulances along the frontlines to ensure health access for impacted communities and will continue offering free psychological support through our mental health centers in the city of Kharkiv for newly arriving evacuees.”

Anatoliy, a Ukrainian civilian who experienced Russian occupation in 2022 and recently evacuated from Vovchansk with his mother, said:

“When the second offensive began, we could not sleep for four days. Day and night, there were only air strikes, more than 100 explosions. And the worst thing is that the planes started dropping 500kg aerial bombs, which are much worse than the artillery we’ve experienced. My mother and I were hiding in the house, it was shaking so much that we thought it would fall apart. We did not want to leave and thought we would survive somehow. Then the police came and told us to get ready in three minutes. I didn’t take anything and had to leave just like that. The clothes we were wearing were our only possessions.”

Project HOPE has been working in Ukraine since the Russian invasion in February 2022, supporting health clinics with supplies and medicines, reconstructing medical facilities, training health workers, and providing mental health support to those impacted by the war. Additionally, Project HOPE has been supporting Ukrainian refugees in Poland and Moldova with primary and mental health support.

Photos and videos are here and interviews are available upon request. Contact cridgway@projecthope.org (Whatsapp: +1 707-480-6975) or media@projecthope.org.

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