The need for protection in Ukraine
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 vulnerable populations. From children, to LGBTQI+ communities, to people with disabilities and illnesses and the elderly, there are many who are either displaced, or they 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 relationship 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).
NP's work in Ukraine
During our rapid response and start-up phase, NP 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.
From connecting an elderly man named Yuri to the medical services he needed in Kharkiv, to assisting a woman with heat sickness in Mykolaiv, NP is advocating for civilian needs and capabilities to the international community.
The future of NP's work in Ukraine
NP will focus on addressing urgent civilian protection needs for vulnerable communities across Mykolaiv, Kharkiv, and Odesa Oblasts. The team will provide protection for communities in hard-to-reach places and connect them to humanitarian services like food, water, and medicine. NP will be assisting vulnerable populations, such as single parent households, child-headed households, unaccompanied minors, the elderly, those living with disabilities, and LGBTQI+ people.
“My husband broke his hip before the war. He can’t walk.
Tatiana and Konstantin, an elderly couple in Kharkiv