EU and UNDP restore 15 war-damaged schools in Ukraine

Following reconstruction efforts led by the “EU4UASchools: Build Back Better” project, 6,406 children and 767 teachers were able to return to in-person classes in renovated educational institutions

May 8, 2024

Opening of the renovated Velykozholudskyi Lyceum in Rivne Oblast, February 2024.

Photo credit: David Myroshnychenko / E'COMM for UNDP in Ukraine

Kyiv, 8 May 2024 — The European Union (EU) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) have made substantial progress in revitalizing educational facilities throughout Ukraine. As of today, 15 schools in Mykolaiv, Rivne, and Zhytomyr oblasts have been completely renovated, ushering in a new phase of enhanced learning environments.

All these institutions suffered significantly because of the full-scale Russian invasion of Ukraine, which caused severe damage to the buildings. Thanks to the “EU4UASchools: Build Back Better” project, they have been extensively reconstructed, with roof replacements, installation of doors and windows, enhancement of drainage and ventilation systems, electrical upgrades, facade refurbishment, and more. Central to this effort is a commitment to inclusivity, environmental sustainability, and adherence to energy efficiency standards, to ensure that the renovated schools provide safe, conducive, and eco-friendly spaces for learning.

In addition to the repairs, the project has re-equipped 110 schools in Cherkasy, Dnipropetrovsk, Kirovohrad, Lviv, Mykolaiv, Odesa, Poltava, Rivne, Zakarpattia, and Zhytomyr oblasts with furniture — such as desks, chairs, blackboards, and bookcases — to provide a comfortable learning environment for students. Twenty-eight more schools are currently being renovated.

Claudia Amaral, Head of the EU Humanitarian Aid Office in Ukraine, said “Restoring schools is a vital contribution to restoring children’s access to education. Despite the ongoing war, we cannot allow the creation of a “lost generation”. The young people of Ukraine are the nation’s future.”

Jaco Cilliers, UNDP Resident Representative in Ukraine, said that only a third of children in Ukraine attend classes entirely in-person. “Together with the European Union and other international partners, we have an ambitious goal: to ensure the safety and well-being of tens of thousands of children, educators, parents, and other community members in the refurbished schools,” he said. “Therefore, our collaborative endeavours aim to not only rebuild damaged infrastructure but also to create nurturing, inclusive environments conducive to learning and growth.”


The schools were renovated as part of the “EU4UASchools: Build Back Better” project, which is being implemented by UNDP in Ukraine, with financial support from the European Union.

The project is intended to facilitate light repairs of 66 and re-equip 110 educational facilities in Ukraine. Specific repairs are being made to damaged buildings, selected in consultation with the Government of Ukraine, including light and medium repair works at schools with damage rates equal to or below 60 percent. Renovations include the installation of new windows, repairs of roofs and sanitary facilities, reconstruction of shelters, and other urgent and critical work.

Media enquiries: Yuliia Samus, UNDP Ukraine Head of Communications; e-mail: