Nearly 9 in 10 people in Ukraine do not have enough money to cover their living expenses, new report finds 

13th September, Ukraine: new report from global homelessness charity, Depaul International, shows 88 per cent of people surveyed in Ukraine do not have enough money to cover their living expenses. Only a third reported being satisfied with their current living conditions, with 31 per cent being forced to share a bedroom with another family and 43 per cent not knowing how long they will be able to stay in their current accommodation. 

Respondents included a high proportion of Internally Displaced People (IDPs), with just under half of respondents stating they had been displaced twice during the war. Support and connection with others helps people to cope with the change and trauma, however a third reported having no friends or family in their new area.

As the war shows no sign of abating, Ukrainians are relying on humanitarian assistance, government support and savings to supplement lost or irregular income. With people coping with trauma, living in precarious circumstances and unable to afford adequate housing, the charity warns of a significant risk of a rise in homelessness and people sleeping rough in Ukraine this winter. 

Depaul Ukraine, which has worked in the country since 2007, has set out in the report the second phase of its response, including a commitment to supporting people sleeping rough, preventing homelessness and building community resilience in the country.  

Targeted cash transfers will increase as 73 per cent of people cited cash as the highest priority need and the most useful form of assistance across all locations. The charity will continue to provide psychological support to those that need it including to veterans, as more and more are discharged from the military. A quarter of people interviewed accessing Depaul rough sleeping services were veterans of pre-2022 conflicts. The survey also found addiction levels are high among people sleeping rough with 44 per cent reporting alcohol misuse needs and 11 per cent of drug misuse needs. 

Today, the charity announces the international premiere of documentary “What did you do to the Russians” at The Frontline Club in London hosted by journalist and presenter, Shelagh Fogarty. The documentary, from Slovakian film makers Michal Fulier and Jana Buček Kovalčíková, follows teams from Depaul Ukraine and Depaul Slovakia, capturing the reality of Ukrainians reliant on humanitarian aid – echoed in the findings of the report. 

Father Vitaliy Novak, CEO of Depaul Ukraine, said:

“This report echoes what my teams and I see every day – people struggling to support themselves, unable to find employment and living in very difficult conditions.

“As we brace ourselves for the winter ahead, we remain committed to targeting aid where it is needed most, ensuring that the most vulnerable in Ukraine are not left behind.”

Matthew Carter, Group CEO Depaul International, said:

We cannot expect Ukrainians to process the trauma of the last 18 months and plan for the future if they do not have a certain or adequate roof over their head. For many people life in Ukraine remains precarious and insecure. 

“The findings of this report and footage from the documentary shows the vital importance of long-term support for communities and Depaul remains committed to providing this, now more than ever.” 

The report surveyed 526 individuals using a combination of an online national survey and face to face interviews. To support Depaul Ukraine’s lifesaving work, please donate here.