A group of Ukrainian refugees walk on the roadside after crossing the Siret border crossing on their way to buses chartered in Romania to take the new arrivals to accommodation in neighbouring villages or to different cities in Romania and Europe on March 05, 2022 in Siret border, Romania

Providing Relief to People Affected by the
War in Ukraine

International Medical Corps has expanded its relief efforts inside Ukraine in response to the war there, as well as in neighboring countries, to provide medical, mental health and protection services to the millions of people affected by the conflict, including refugees.

Through our eight operational centres throughout Ukraine and programmes in Poland, Moldova and Romania, we are working with health agencies and local partners to provide the following:

  • Primary and emergency health services
  • Mental health and psychosocial support (MHPSS), to treat the unseen wounds of war
  • Gender-based violence (GBV) response services, and protection services for women, children and other people who face risks during conflict
  • Cash assistance, enabling people to purchase food, blankets and other vital supplies
  • Water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) services
  • Medicines and medical supplies, including PPE, to help provide critical care and prevent infectious diseases among refugees and displaced populations

You can help provide relief to refugees, internally displaced people and at-risk communities in Ukraine and its neighbours. FIND OUT HOW >>

According to the United Nations, nearly 22 million Ukrainians—almost 50% of the population—are in need of urgent humanitarian assistance
International Medical Corps’ history in Ukraine dates back to 1999, when we delivered essential relief and medicines to healthcare facilities, and trained local doctors and medical staff
In 2014, following the collapse of eastern Ukraine’s health system, we again began providing outpatient primary healthcare, MHPSS, GBV and COVID-related services in the conflict zone there
The UN says 5 million people are currently internally displaced, and that there are nearly 6 million refugees in European countries, meaning that 11 million people—including roughly 5 million of the country's 7.5 million children—have fled their homes, about one-quarter of the entire population

Help people affected by conflict and war in Ukraine

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Our Response in Ukraine

The war in Ukraine is evolving rapidly. Waves of attacks, including the June 2023 breach of the Kakhovka Dam, have displaced civilians throughout the country and created millions of refugees. International Medical Corps, which has decades of experience in the country, is currently on the ground in Ukraine and Poland, and helped refugees in Romania and Moldova during the initial months after the invasion. Operating from nine offices throughout the country with a staff of more than 400, we are providing a wide range of context-sensitive humanitarian relief, including critical medical and social services, under increasingly difficult and dangerous conditions.

Here is an overview of the services we’ve been providing in Ukraine since 2014, and how our teams are expanding relief services as needed. For the most up-to-date information about our response, please see the situation reports in the Resources section of this page.

Medical Care

Before the war, we worked closely with local partners to operate mobile medical teams providing healthcare services—including specialties such as gynaecology and cardiology, as well as prescription medication—to villages around Mariupol, near the original line of contact in the eastern conflict. With war now raging throughout the country, we have moved hundreds of tons of critical medicines, supplies and equipment to overwhelmed healthcare facilities inside Ukraine, to serve millions of people, and will continue supplying hospitals as needed.

Across the country, International Medical Corps has identified different needs based on the local context, always working to ensure continuity of care in the country. We are ensuring that healthcare facilities in active conflict zones have the supplies they need—including medicines, blood, etc.—and are strengthening buildings to withstand attack, so these facilities can continue operating. In areas that have seen conflict but where the invader has been pushed back, International Medical Corps is helping to rehabilitate healthcare facilities that have been damaged by the fighting while providing the support needed to restore care to the community. In areas under threat of attack, we are upgrading systems, hardening facilities and ensuring alterative sources of water supply, among other measures. For example, the June 2023 breach of the Kakhovka Dam has disrupted water supply for hundreds of thousands of people and the healthcare facilities that serve them, and we are working to ensure that these people and facilities can continue to access clean water.

International Medical Corps currently has operations in Chernihiv, Dnipro, Kharkiv, Kyiv, Lviv, Mykolaiv, Odesa, Stryi and Vinnytsia. From these operational hubs, we also provide material support in the way of food, non-food items (NFIs), and medical supplies and equipment to Donetsk. In all of our efforts, rather than establishing a parallel system, we support and operate out of existing health centres or community spaces, helping to strengthen and supplement existing capacity. Our training programmes also seek to strengthen the capacity of Ukrainian care providers and first responders to provide emergency and trauma care.

In addition, for as long as we’ve been in Ukraine, International Medical Corps has been working with the country’s Ministry of Health (MoH) to coordinate efforts. We will continue to work with the MoH—as well as with local ministries of health in the country’s oblasts—to provide lifesaving services to community members, internally displaced people or those forced to flee across international borders.

Mental Health and Psychosocial Support (MHPSS)

After eight years of conflict in the east, the Ukrainian people already have been exposed to significant uncertainty and emotional distress, and levels of fear and anxiety about their exposure to violence and trauma—along with stressors related to displacement and family separation—have only risen as the war has escalated.

International Medical Corps works directly in communities and with local partner organizations to provide appropriate MHPSS programming and training to those in need. From 2014 to 2022, we used mobile teams to reach villages along the line of contact in the eastern conflict—and we have continued this work throughout the country, despite the invasion and wider scope of war. Our psychologists, case workers and community-based facilitators have established support groups to provide people—including caregivers—with psychosocial support.

We are continuing to increase the availability of comprehensive MHPSS services to address emotional distress, to provide psychological first aid (and train others to do so), and to prevent and treat mental health conditions, both in Ukraine and in surrounding countries. We are increasing mental health services by hiring mental health staff in primary healthcare centres; building the capacity of psychosocial support providers through training; providing psychoeducation, sensitization and mass media campaigns; and providing MHPSS support to MoH staff within International Medical Corps-supported healthcare facilities. We also are focusing on community-based activities involving psychosocial support for host communities and internally displaced persons (IDPs), as well as providing activities for children, to help host communities and IDPs better cope with the effects of the war.

Gender-Based Violence (GBV) and Protection Services

In situations of conflict and displacement, women and girls face new and heightened protection risks, which are compounded by interruptions in services and support networks. International Medical Corps has experience in Ukraine that can help. From 2015 to 2020, we delivered GBV prevention and response programmes in partnership with local organizations and communities, organising women’s and girls’ safe spaces, training caseworkers to provide individualised care for women and child survivors of violence, and mobilizing communities to reduce risks and prevent incidents of violence.

We also have supported children and adolescents residing in areas of conflict by creating safe spaces that promote well-being, as well as social and emotional development. And we have promoted essential life skills among these groups, including self-awareness, group and community interaction, peer and family relationships, and leadership.

Now, we are working to ensure that women and girls inside Ukraine, as well as those crossing into neighbouring countries, have access to safe spaces, material support and focused response services for survivors of rape and other forms of gender-based violence. We also are working to ensure the safety of children and adolescents, who are particularly vulnerable during times of war.

Aid to Refugees

In addition to expanding our existing programmes in Ukraine, International Medical Corps has set up a country program in Poland, and maintains a presence in Romania and Moldova, enabling us to provide humanitarian services throughout the region. We have established supply corridors, are procuring medicines, supplies and equipment based on requests we are receiving from hospitals and primary-care centers within Ukraine, and are moving these critically needed items across borders as needed. We also are working with government agencies to provide medical care, mental health and psychosocial support and protection services to refugees, both directly and with partners.

For example, in Poland—where we are a registered NGO and have set up a robust country programme—we are working with partners to provide health and MHPSS services to refugees. We also are distributing health- and WASH-related supplies—as well as non-food items (NFIs), such as diapers and towels—to shelters and reception centres, and offering employment opportunities to displaced Ukrainians with specialized skills to provide services to fellow refugees. And we are providing technical assistance on protection-related issues, with priorities including GBV prevention and response, child-friendly spaces, and psychosocial first aid (PFA) support and training.

In Moldova, we have worked with the Ministry of Health to strengthen its health system, particularly along the border with Ukraine, and have provided shipments of health- and WASH-related supplies to facilities and reception centres there. We also are providing training to strengthen the health system and help it prepare for potential additional waves of refugees.

Finally, if requested by national governments, we can deploy our Emergency Medical Team (EMT) Type 1, in either fixed or mobile configuration, to provide medical and other care to refugees. We are the only NGO in the world classified by the WHO as an EMT Type 1 provider for both configurations.


Situation Reports