The war continues to increase humanitarian needs in Ukraine, especially affecting people who remain close to the front line. Fighting and hostilities ruin infrastructure, housing, and people’s lives. More than 16,000 civilians have been injured and more than 9,000, including 500 children, have been killed since the beginning of war on February 24, 2022.
Zaporizhzhia, a large industrial city in southeast Ukraine located 30 kilometres away from the front line, is not only attacked by rockets and shelling on a daily basis but is also the center of a nuclear catastrophe threat due to the military tension around the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant. Despite the above, people are coming back to Zaporizhzhia, either because they can’t afford living in other parts of Ukraine or abroad (due to language and adaptation issues), or simply because they miss their family and friends. The level of humanitarian needs in the region is high because of the hostilities, and a lot of people require windows and roofs repairs. The areas closer to the front line also lack jobs and store supplies.
Our pensions are not enough for present-day living. We need to buy food, pay for the apartment, and buy fuel.
Vladmir is a 74 year-old retiree who used to fix fridges and air conditioners while his wife was a cook. They both live in Zaporizhzhia city.
I feel a bit scared to be in Zaporizhzhia, so I live in our summer house in Zaporizhzhia oblast, bordering the oblast of Dnipro. I fish in a bay there. I catch fish and share it with my wife and our cat. Before the war escalated, everything was great. Our children had apartments and a car.
On August 9th, one of Zaporizhzhia’s residential districts got hit by a missile. This is the second time Vladimir’s family was affected by a rocket strike.
The first time my son’s apartment got damaged in Autumn, the windows were destroyed. Luckily, our family was at the summer house. This time my apartment in the city was affected. My son and his fiancé were there. They were frightened by the explosion, but didn’t get hurt, only the windows got damaged again. There’s no way my apartment will get hit a second time.
Unfortunately, besides 400 damaged apartments, human casualties were also reported. Three people are known to have been killed by the missile strike and nine were wounded.
We hear explosions often, but this time it hit very close. I'm in a bit of a shock right now. My father was on the way to a place where the rocket hit, he was just one minute away when it struck. When he got home, he was holding his side, bleeding. I was really scared. The ambulance took us to the hospital. My father is better now.
Following the missile strike, Acted responded with a rapid cash assistance registration in less than 48 hours, registering 67 people among which Marina and her family were able to have access to this essential cash assistance. Acted has the capacity to provide multi-purpose cash assistance within 3-5 days to communities suddenly affected by shelling. The cash is provided in one payment of 61 EUR per person per month for three months of assistance.
Under this 12-month project supported by the European Union, Acted and Estonian Refugee Council deliver multi-purpose cash assistance to vulnerable people living in highly targeted, rural, and frontline territories of Ukraine.
*The names have been changed to protect people’s identity.