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Response to the war in Ukraine

UNDP Resilience Building and Recovery Programme

The war in Ukraine has caused a tremendous loss of life and livelihoods, putting stress on the economy, and forcing millions of people to leave their homes. As the fighting continues, the negative repercussions ripple across Ukraine, the region and the world.  

Development Never Stops. Neither do we.

As the destruction intensifies, efforts to rebuild continue unabated. Relying on its expertise in converging humanitarian, development and peacebuilding goals, UNDP, as part of the coordinated UN response, is assisting the people and the Government of Ukraine to recover and reconstruct now, ensuring that immediate needs are linked to long-term goals. The work we implement today will have a long-term sustainable impact, supporting the country’s efforts to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals.

Leveraging its almost 30-year history in Ukraine and its established presence on the ground, and in close cooperation with state authorities and local communities, UNDP prioritizes approaches that are inclusive, just and green. Throughout the war, UNDP has been working with local authorities to sustain essential service provision, to facilitate access to humanitarian aid, to support mine clearance and debris removal so people can return home, and much, much more.  UNDP’s support, in line with Government priorities, focuses on five key areas of support:

1. Government Capacities for Crisis Response and Management

Photo: UNDP Ukraine /Pavlo Petrov

The Government of Ukraine is facing unprecedented challenges in responding to the impact of war. Assessments of war-induced damage and coordination of recovery and reconstruction are key to prioritize and sequence vital recovery work. To date, UNDP has mapped and assessed war-damaged infrastructure in 60 settlements in the Kyiv region alone, with plans to continue in all affected areas throughout the country, using machine-learning algorithms, big data scans, Geographic Information Systems (GIS), remote sensing, and drone image analysis to complement recent assessments by the World Bank and the European Union.

UNDP is also boosting the Government’s crisis response capacities, providing supplies, training and logistical support to national and regional emergency services, and providing technical assistance to the National Recovery and Reconstruction Plan.

2. Sustaining the Provision of Public Services

Photo: UNDP Ukraine / Andriy Krepkikh

With civilian, transport and energy infrastructure being destroyed, and thousands of civil servants displaced, providing public services has became a challenge when people need them most. UNDP is helping local governments across Ukraine to provide immediate support through mobile administrative services. UNDP also is helping local authorities to analyse and address current gaps in social care services with a ‘build forward better’ approach.

 As a key partner of the Ministry of Digital Transformation, UNDP provides continuous support to the expansion and digitalization of essential and priority public services. Since the onset of the war, UNDP has supported the registration of 1.4 million internally displaced persons on the flagship Diia platform and helped develop 13 new digital solutions for key public services.

3. Emergency Works Facilitating Return and Reconstruction

Photo: Oleksandr Ratushniak / UNDP Ukraine

Attacks on energy infrastructure have left 10 million people without electricity. With the onset of winter, providing energy and heating to the wider population will be critical to avoid a fresh wave of displacement and increased humanitarian needs. UNDP is actively supporting energy security, with work ongoing to restore energy supply to critical public facilities (including hospitals, fire and police stations), through provision of energy equipment, water supply and heating. Going forward, UNDP will provide technical support for the implementation of an EIB loan for comprehensive energy rehabilitation of public buildings (such as hospitals, schools and kindergartens), for the benefit of approximately 300 municipalities. With this, UNDP is contributing not only to immediate response and winterization needs, but also setting the trajectory for green recovery.

UNDP’s interventions in assessing the presence of explosive devices and supporting debris removal and recycling are making it possible for people to return home. All clearance work is done in a way to support a circular economy and the rapid recovery of affected communities. Once completed, our work in Kyiv oblast will create safe access for over 1 million people.

4. Incomes, Livelihoods and Private Sector Response

Photo credit: Oleh Matsko / UNDP Ukraine

Due to the effects of the war, Ukraine expects a 39 percent contraction of the GDP in 2022. Ukraine’s micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs), which employ over 7 million people and are crucial for economic sustainability at the local level, are the hardest hit. UNDP’s strong relationships with business organizations has made it possible to engage with over 10,000 MSMEs with business support services during the war.

In addition, UNDP is helping relocated businesses, particularly those run by women and vulnerable groups, to resume operations in their host communities with market assessments, job creation projects, capital grants, and access to networks.

5. Civil Society and Maintenance of the Social Fabric

Photo credit: Yuliia Samus / UNDP Ukraine

The active role of civil society is needed to promote inclusive participation and engagement in the recovery process, and thus to ensure its success. UNDP assists the government, National Human Rights Institution (Ombudsperson), civil society and the people of Ukraine in advancing democratic policies and practices needed to accelerate progress on sustainable human development. This work includes advocating for human rights and gender equality for all, supporting anti-corruption efforts, and empowering civil society and youth activists.

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