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Nonviolent Peaceforce in Ukraine

In April 2022 NP began an assessment on the ground in Ukraine. Assessments are the first step before a full program begins. During assessments we build relationships with local people, get a deeper understanding of the conflict, and evaluate whether there is a need for Unarmed Civilian Protection (UCP). 

The team has been meeting with key people on the ground around the country—such as women’s shelters, student groups, and humanitarian partners—to collaborate on how and what way these groups would welcome UCP strategies. In violent conflict, there are a lot of unknown factors, but the strength of NP is we adapt to context and needs by listening to local people. The assessment team has identified key protection needs in Ukraine (detailed below) and is now in the second stage of assessment - seeking funding for this work.

Your support has made it possible for NP
to reach civilians across Ukraine

“My husband broke his hip before the war. He can’t walk.

Volunteers could have helped us to evacuate, but what would we do after the evacuation? Conditions in collective centers are overcrowded. How would I take care of him there?”

Tatiana and Konstantin, an elderly couple in Kharkiv
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In Ukraine, and around the world, civilians are paying the cost of conflict. Violence isn't solving problems – but we know there's another way. Join us to protect civilians and transform the world's response to conflict.

The need for protection

Although the headlines are dominated by news of heavy shelling and of Russian troop movement, the conflict has created multi-faceted crises and widespread needs. Within these spaces, a need for protection is clear: 

  • Protection of children. There are reports of children being forced to move to Russia. Children are traveling through the country alone because they do not have parents who can accompany them to safety. The children's caretakers made a choice that, even though they would be vulnerable on their journey, it was safer than staying in a war zone. Finally, there are children who are institutionalized in orphanages or with disabilities who are stuck in active war zones and unable to flee.  
  • Protection of women and girls. There was already high incidence of sex trafficking in the region. But now, as women move through the country, while men stay behind to fight, they are at greater risk of sexual and gender-based violence and trafficking, especially when trying to cross the border and find safety. 
  • Protection of people with disabilities and illnesses and the elderly. There are many who are unable or unwilling to evacuate, especially those who are living in institutions or hospitals. Not only are they at risk of injury or death from the war, but also are struggling to find food or the medicine they need to survive.
  • Protection within communities. Ukrainians have shared with us their concern over tensions rising within communities as the war drags on - especially the longer host communities in the West maintain support for millions of displaced families from the East. Without proactive relationships building and protection now, tensions rising in the future, coupled with the wide availability of weapons could lead to violence within local communities. 
  • Protection of the environment. War degrades the environment and the harm only worsens with the proliferation of weapons and militarization. In Ukraine, the harm to the environment could be catastrophic with the risk of attacks on nuclear and chemical facilities, use of cluster munitions, and unexploded ordnance (e.g. mines).

While every conflict and context is unique, these are protection needs that are familiar to NP and our work in violent areas around the world. Organizations in Ukraine are ready to work with NP when the funding is secured and begin providing protection together. We cannot stop a war alone, but we can stop harm to civilians where we are able to work in community. 


In A protection crisis

We Support Civilians

Startup Director: Felicity Grey
Current Assessment Start: February 2022
First NP Presence: 2014
Crisis Snapshot:

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Civilian deaths, including 268 child deaths
(June 1, OHCHR).
People leaving icon
Have left the country (June 2, UNHCR).
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Internally displaced Ukrainians
(June 2, UNHCR).
Preliminary Findings: Civilian Protection Needs & Responses Ukraine

Supporting local efforts is essential

This summary of preliminary findings presents key conclusions from the assessment conducted in April 2022 by NP and makes recommendations on emergency and future protection programming in Ukraine.

Read the Report Now
Kharkiv Snapshot

Kharkiv Snapshot

This snapshot presents key conclusions from a rapid protection assessment conducted in Kharkiv and Chuhuiv in May 2022 by NP. It builds on analysis and recommendations published earlier in May 2022 as part of a broader assessment of protection needs and responses in Ukraine.

Read the Snapshot Now
Word “library” is written in Cyrillic script on the building behind the local market that burned down in the bombing of Kharkiv city by the Russian forces. Kharkiv city, Ukraine, 25 May 2022. © Tetiana Gaviuk/Nonviolent Peaceforce
Word “library” is written in Cyrillic script on the building behind the local market that burned down in the bombing of Kharkiv city by the Russian forces. Kharkiv city, Ukraine, 25 May 2022. © Tetiana Gaviuk/Nonviolent Peaceforce

Updates from the Ground

Ukranian woman on left, NP staff on right, smiling and talking

NP Ukraine Assessment Announcement

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Équipe NP travaillant avec un groupe local à Zaporizhzhia
May 5 update

Réponses ukrainiennes locales édifiantes

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Kristina Preikšaitytė, Nonviolent Peaceforce Protection Officer, looks at the apartment building damaged by the Russian forces in Kharkiv city, Ukraine, 25 May 2022. © Tetiana Gaviuk/Nonviolent Peaceforce
June 6 Update

Snapshots from Kharkiv

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