On 7 and 8 December, on neutral ground (Hungary), the Council General International received a delegation of four Ukrainian SSVP ladies. As the airspace is blocked because of the war, there are no flights in the Ukraine, so the delegation travelled by train and car to meet us.
Conflict in Ukraine
For many Ukrainians, their only thought now is how to survive the winter cold, which sometimes lasts until even April, with temperatures going as low as -25° C.
As we look forward to gathering with family and friends in the comfort, warmth, and safety of our own homes this Christmas, our thoughts naturally turn to those less fortunate.
Nine long months have passed since the full-scale invasion of Ukraine and still the conflict shows no sign of abating.
Just 48 hours before the horrendous missile attacks which rocked Ukraine on October 10th, I lit a candle and prayed for the people of Ukraine in Kyiv’s iconic gold domed church of St Michael.
Fr. Vitaliy, a missionary of the Congregation of the Mission in Ukraine, is also president of the Board of Depaul Ukraine, an organization that is part of the worldwide Vincentian Family, which is doing important work helping those affected by the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
The General Council International of the Society of Saint Vincent de Paul (SSVP) signed a collaboration agreement with Depaul International, donating 10,000 euros per month for a minimum of twelve months.
After words of welcome, Fr. Vitaliy spoke about the founding of Depaul in Kharkiv in 2006 and its journey to becoming a lifeline for the country’s homeless ever since.
Russia’s war on Ukraine has brought so much pain and suffering. It has resulted in a humanitarian crisis which will only get worse as winter approaches.
The recent blasts across Ukraine have rocked the nation. Our staff and volunteers are safe and well, and we are continuing our work across Kyiv, Kharkiv and Odesa, delivering vital food, hygiene kits and helping to repair homes.
Ukraine faces a perilous winter without urgent funds, says international homelessness charity.
SSVP and Depaul are together, in close collaboration, in an effective humanitarian action in Ukraine
The response the Society of St. Vincent de Paul (SSVP) in Ukraine can make to these problems is limited.