Nine long months have passed since the full-scale invasion of Ukraine and still the conflict shows no sign of abating. The last few days have seen increasing attacks targeted at civilian infrastructure, particularly those affecting critical water, communal heating, and energy supplies. Mass power outages have left millions of people without heating, light, cooking facilities, or means of connecting with loved ones. Snow is already falling in many Oblasts [administrative district], and concerns are growing for the safety of thousands of already vulnerable people.
Many of the recently liberated towns and villages where Depaul Ukraine is working have been without food and electricity for more than 8 months. Stories of rape and brutality are widespread. Such tales of human suffering are difficult to hear, and even harder to witness first-hand.
On a practical level, no phone signal and no internet make coordination of humanitarian work all the harder, but the team at Depaul Ukraine are undeterred. Across many of the hardest hit areas, staff and volunteers are busy handing out blankets and warm clothing. Food is being provided to thousands of people who would otherwise go without. Huge pallets of firewood and solid fuels are being delivered. Generators and torches bring light to villages that have been without power for 8 months or more. Materials to mend roofs and windows are being widely distributed. Winter will still be incredibly tough, but these measures will undoubtedly save lives.
Matthew Carter, Group CEO Depaul International, said:
“Recent weeks have seen an ever-increasing number of attacks targeting civilian infrastructure and power supplies. With temperatures frequently below freezing, and snow on the way, the devastating impact this will have on people’s lives is almost incalculable. The team is doing everything they can to help as many people as possible.”
“Yet amongst all the atrocities, we see such selflessness and compassion. So many people engaged in helping others, despite suffering greatly themselves. We are incredibly proud of the Depaul Ukraine staff and volunteers who work tirelessly in difficult circumstances.”
“We are so grateful to everyone who has donated, despite the financial pressures people are facing today. Your donations not only make our team’s work possible, they also remind the people of Ukraine that they haven’t been forgotten.”
To support the Depaul Ukraine Winter Appeal, please visit https://int.depaulcharity.org/