Our response to the Ukraine crisis
An update on our Ukraine Emergency appeal
Please read an update on how your donations have helped children with disabilities and their families so far, and the challenges they are still facing
We have been observing with alarm and sadness the invasion of Ukraine and the deterioration in relations between countries in the region.
In light of recent events in Ukraine, and our prior experience working in the country, we have decided to launch an appeal to raise money for groups particularly affected by the conflict.
We are in close contact with these NGOs and parent lead organisations in Ukraine, and raising money to provide them with assistance in any way we can. Children with disabilities are particularly vulnerable right now, and we want to make sure that we use the connection we already have with these local organisations and parents to provide focused assistance to them.
At the same time, we are providing help to migrant communities in the UK. Our existing Open Doors project, launched in 2019, works with Eastern European and Central Asian Migrant women in the UK facing issues as a result of their migrant status. Since this project’s conception, we have provided dedicated psychological support groups for these women to discuss their issues collectively, with many Ukrainian women attending such sessions. We now wish to provide dedicated mental health support groups to Ukrainian migrants living in the UK.
You can donate to our work in Ukraine working with children with disabilities, their families and local NGOs HERE
You can donate to our Open Doors project, working with migrant communities in the UK HERE
Staff and children sheltering in a Kropyvnytskyi basement
"Attention! Go immediately to the shelters, take your dogs too!" Vika, age 11.
Open Doors project participants gathering for a support group
Project work - 2015-2019
In the UK parents of children with disabilities, working in close partnership with professionals, have played a strategic role in child disability policy since the 1960s. HealthProm supports parent-led civil society organisations in Ukraine to have a similar impact. From 2015-2019, with grants from the EC, UNICEF and UK FCO, HealthProm led an initiative to mobilise parent leaders in ten regions to advocate for vital policy change and the development of services to support families at the earliest stage in their children’s lives. Working closely with our local partners, the Charitable Foundation Early Intervention Institute and the National Assembly of People with Disabilities in Ukraine, we strengthened the capacity of parent organisations to voice their personal experience and the need for evidence-based policy, build strategic partnerships with key allies and regional governments, run advocacy campaigns and build a national platform for change, the All-Ukrainian Parents Forum for Early Intervention.
During this phase of our work, parent organisations in two regions achieved formal commitment to the development of Early Intervention (EI) services, and in all regions parent advocacy for change continues. One of the EI services that has resulted from their efforts, in Vinnitsiya region, is now (in the context of Covid-19) providing online EI support for families, backed by in-service online staff training and mentoring from our partner, the Charitable Foundation Early Intervention Institute. Five early-stage services in Kharkiv region are being similarly supported, and in Luhansk, one of the two regions most affected by the conflict, a new parents’ organisation, formed during this phase, has since persuaded the regional capital authorities to fully fund an Early Intervention service previously delivered part-time by volunteers. The potential transformative impact of parent advocacy has been recognised by the Human Rights programme of Open Society Foundations, which has awarded five two-year grants to parent organisations to continue their efforts to work for an inclusive society in Ukraine.
Local partners: Charity Fund Early Intervention Institute, Kharkiv; National Assembly of People with Disabilities