Crisis Units to Ramp Up Coordinated Government Response to the Pandemic in Ukraine

May 27, 2020

United Nations Development Programme is providing integrated support in key strategic areas

Photo: Shutterstock

Kyiv, 28 May 2020 – The Government of Ukraine, with the support of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Ukraine, has set up two Crisis Coordination and Management Units to provide a coordinated, efficient, and inclusive response to the COVID-19 crisis in Ukraine.

The units, which were set up in cooperation with the Prime Minister’s office and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, will focus on improving coordination between ministries, government institutions and oblast and local authorities to ensure there is an effective and efficient response to the coronavirus outbreak.

UNDP Resident Representative in Ukraine Dafina Gercheva said that the support is part of a broad package of assistance her organization is providing to help the country prepare, respond and recover from the COVID-19 crisis.

“There are three immediate priorities on the table,” she said. “They are to strengthen the resilience of the health systems; enhancing national capacity for effective and efficient crisis management; and assessing the socio-economic impacts of COVID-19 – offering policy options and response measures to recover back better and greener. UNDP’s focus remains on the most vulnerable people and those who may otherwise be left behind.”

“We have to ensure that in rebounding from the pandemic, the progress Ukraine has made on the path to sustainable development is safeguarded and that no one is left behind as the country goes forward,” Gercheva said.

UNDP is providing the Prime Minister’s Office with a wide range of technical assistance and strategic policy advice, including assessing the social and economic impact of the COVID-19 crisis,  developing a national socio-economic recovery strategy, formulating a whole-of-government humanitarian response plan, and ensuring the coordination of strategic gender-responsive outreach.

"Modern crises are much bigger than the borders of one country, or even a continent,” said Deputy Prime Minister for European and Euro-Atlantic Integration Vadym Prystaiko. “So an effective response, in particular to the crisis due to the COVID-19 pandemic, requires systematic international cooperation. The Government of Ukraine appreciates the support of UNDP, which allows us to form together effective solutions to overcome crises, both current and future."

The organization is also helping to strengthen the communication capacities of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to manage the crisis, counter disinformation and fake news, mobilize resources for humanitarian assistance and support the coordination of international medical procurement through Ukrainian embassies abroad. Another area of support involves strengthening digital governance working modalities, providing support to key government institutions to transition to online working arrangements, as well as helping state institutions to improve public communication around important health issues.

“We very much appreciate the support that UNDP is providing to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs,” said Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba. “It significantly strengthens the Foreign Ministry's ability to respond to the coronavirus crisis and overcome its consequences for Ukrainian society and economy. The pandemic is a challenge to the whole world, and the most effective response to it is global solidarity.”


The socioeconomic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic is already visible, disproportionately affecting vulnerable and marginalized populations including women and girls. Women are at the forefront of the fight against the outbreak as health care workers, scientists, researchers, educators, and family caregivers.

The pandemic is global, deadly and multifaceted. It is a health, humanitarian and development crisis.  The world will get through this crisis, but only if we act now, together and in solidarity. All humanity needs to fight back.  

UNDP is entrusted with the technical leadership in the socio-economic recovery response to the COVID-19 pandemic and as such is coordinating the UN’s comprehensive national level assessment of the impact of COVID-19 as per the UN Integrated Framework. 

Media inquiries:

Yuliia Samus; UNDP in Ukraine Communication Officer