Ukraine: Summary of 2019 Humanitarian Response Plan

News and Press Release
Originally published


Five years into an increasingly protracted and complex crisis in eastern Ukraine, a multi-year strategy for 2019 and 2020 has been developed. While the alleviation of suffering of civilians through coherent and timely humanitarian action and protection support is paramount, this Strategy also seeks better collaboration across different institutional boundaries to reduce needs over time and build people’s resilience.

Humanitarian partners in Ukraine propose to complement the Government-led response and other humanitarian interventions with a focused and highly prioritised Response Plan totalling US$162 million to assist 2.3 million most vulnerable men, women and children on both sides of the ‘contact line’ in 2019. Of this, US$135 million has been identified as a critical priority requirement.
This two-year Strategy embraces the Humanitarian Development Nexus (HDN) and advocates for recovery and development efforts to be scaled up. The fertile ground for HDN in Ukraine and the three “Collective Outcomes” established in the Strategy provide an opportune avenue and shared aspiration towards which humanitarian, recovery and development actors will contribute in the coming years.


1. Two-year strategic planning horizon

The Humanitarian Country Team (HCT) has adopted, for the first time, a multi-year strategy for 2019 and 2020, which not only aims to meet the humanitarian and protection needs of the most vulnerable people, but also to reduce the need for prolonged assistance and to advocate for recovery and development efforts to be scaled up. Three “Collective Outcomes” have been defined towards which humanitarian, recovery and development actors will contribute.

2. Strictly prioritised humanitarian actions

For three consecutive years, all humanitarian partners have agreed to go through a strict and focused prioritisation process, using common and clearly-defined criteria to vet projects to ensure that the 2019 humanitarian operations will effectively maximise the available resources.

3. Geographically focused response

Taking into account the ‘do-no-harm’ principle, the planned humanitarian assistance has been extended to the area within 20 km on both sides of the ‘contact line’ to facilitate safe delivery of humanitarian assistance and protection.

4. Vulnerability priority through a ‘gender and age lens’

Being the first country in the world that applied the Inter-Agency Standing Committee (IASC) Gender with Age Marker (GAM) in the 2018 planning cycle at full scale,
Ukraine set an example by striving to address the challenges of gender and age mainstreaming further in 2019 and beyond. The mandatory GAM has been vigorously re-applied across the board to target meeting the critical needs of highly vulnerable people.

5. Accountable and principled humanitarian actions

Accountability to Affected People (AAP) is a centrepiece of the 2019 planning cycle.
All projects in the 2019 Response Plan adhere to the collective AAP framework and put in place appropriate AAP mechanisms to ensure quality and accountable programming.

6. Placing protection at the centre of the response

With frequent violations of International Humanitarian Law, the HCT continues to prioritise the centrality of protection in humanitarian response, capitalising on the existing HCT Protection Strategy. The humanitarian actions will seek to not only meet the immediate needs of people, but also help people stay safe from violence, coercion and abuse and to restore their wellbeing and dignity.

7. Cash – a dignified modality of assistance

In Ukraine, the use of cash has progressively been on the rise over the past few years. Cash-based assistance (including voucher) will continue to be utilised to deliver humanitarian aid as alternative or complementary to in-kind assistance, where feasible.

8. Response strategy adjustable to changes in context

Project proposals will be reviewed and updated on a regular basis. Submission of new projects will be allowed, if needed. This will keep the response plan ‘alive’, operational and adjustable to any changes in the context.

UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
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