By Kinga Komorowska, communication officer at Caritas Poland - Caritas Poland, in cooperation with the Polish Ministry of Foreign Affairs and other Polish NGOs, organised a humanitarian aid convoy for the internally displaced persons (IDPs) settled in Mariupol, in the oblast of Donetsk, Eastern Ukraine.
Caritas Poland contributes with 4300 food and hygiene parcels, 2000 sleeping bags, 460 blankets and 260 camp beds. 2 Caritas Poland employees - Marta Titaniec and Tomasz Kaliński - also accompanied the convoy.
Caritas Poland has been supporting the victims since the beginning of the conflict in eastern Ukraine:
- In February 2014 Caritas Poland channelled PLN 150,000 to Caritas Spes in Lviv to help the victims of the Maidan revolt.
- In March 2014, in agreement with the Polish Post, the "Family to family, Polish families for Ukrainian families" action was organised and over 9000 parcels were sent to 96 Ukrainian parishes.
- In cooperation with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Caritas Poland has organised summer camp for over 600 Ukrainian children, so far.
- More than 1300 Ukrainian children have participated in summer camps organised in Ukraine and Caritas Poland has allocated €140,000 for this purpose. In addition, about 1000 Ukrainian children have spent their summer holidays in Poland.
- Last August Caritas Poland transferred €20,000 for IDPs near Kharkov, in response to the appeal of Caritas Ukraine.
- Caritas Poland supported the needy in Crimea with €15,000.
- In cooperation with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Caritas Poland organised a winterisation support programme amounting to PLN 250,000.
- On 27 November 2014 Caritas Poland sent a humanitarian aid convoy for IDPs settled in the Diocese of Sambirsk-Drohobych. The local Caritas helped to distribute the aid packages to the IDPs in need.
The situation in Ukraine is worsening. Despite the appalling figures - 5 million people in need of humanitarian assistance and 1.3 million internally displace persons (IDPs) - the response to this humanitarian crisis continues to be severely underfinanced. Caritas organisations across Europe are acting in solidarity with Caritas Ukraine and Caritas Spes. Caritas Russia and Belarus are also involved in this help. In this light, Caritas Poland's most recent contribution is of great importance to alleviate the suffering of the IDPs in Eastern Ukraine.
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