ZOA works in three regions: around Uzgorod in the west, in Chernihiv in the north and in Kherson and Mykolaiv in the east of Ukraine. The region around Uzgorod is relatively safe, and this has led to an influx of extremely large numbers of internally displaced persons. Chernihiv, Kherson and Mykolaiv have been Russian controlled and were located at the former frontline, which resulted in high levels of damage to houses and other infrastructure.
Cash for shelter
In the areas around Chernihiv and Cherson, ZOA focuses on 'cash for shelter'. Eligible households receive an average of around 2000-2500 euros to repair their homes. This approach appears to work very well. “The materials are readily available,” Hielke says. “The Ukrainian market is so robust. And everyone has a cousin, son or neighbour who can help to get the work done.”
Focus on vulnerable groups
ZOA aims to assist the most vulnerable IDP's around Uzgorod with cash transfers. Single mothers with children are given priority, as are the elderly and families with more than three children. An on-site assessment by ZOA's Disaster Response Team has shown that it is precisely these vulnerable people who need cash transfers. Emergency aid specialist Hielke Zantema: “Many people who had a financial buffer have fled the country. The people we are now helping in Ukraine barely have the means to travel. We can help these people quickly and effectively via cash transfers.”
Flexible emergency assistance
Through an online cash transfer system, displaced persons receive monthly credits that they can withdraw both in Ukraine and in neighboring countries. This enables people to provide for their most necessary needs themselves, when they need it. Cash transfers are therefore complementary to the distributions that are currently taking place on a large scale.
ZOA is collaborating with the Christian Emergency Relief Cluster in this emergency relief campaign. ZOA's efforts are particularly complementary to the activities of aid organisation Dorcas, that also works in Transcarpathia. The organisations coordinate the implementation of their programmes.