Monday, June 27, 2022
The event will present the important work that it being carried out through the key partnerships between UNICEF, the local authorities and youth organizations in the countries responding to the Ukraine humanitarian and refugee crisis.
Since the 24th of February, more than a quarter of Ukraine’s population has been forced to leave their homes: over 6 million refugees – 90 per cent of whom are women and children – have fled to neighbouring countries, with many immediately continuing their onward journey to other countries. The local governments in the refugee hosting countries are making huge efforts to meet the needs of children and their families and caregivers and provide adequate reception and services. UNICEF has a rich and long-term experience in partnering with local authorities in Europe for advancing child rights realization and improving wellbeing of children. The war in Ukraine and the refugee crisis has shown the critical role of local authorities in the crisis response, and the importance of multi-stakeholder partnerships to support the most urgent needs of children, where young people also play a prominent role. Youth organizations like the Scouts are among the first responders on the ground, helping their local authorities to provide services and care for the refugee children and families affected by the devastating war in Ukraine.
The event aims to give a platform for local governments and youth organizations in the refuge hosting countries affected by the Ukrainian crisis to present their role as a front-line respondent in emergency. It will raise awareness on the key roles and functions of local governments and other local stakeholders, such as youth organizations in emergency and disaster response and for strengthening community resilience.
The event will bring together local authorities from the main refugee-receiving cities across Europe, young people and UNICEF experts to discuss the role of local governments in crisis response, how to better address the urgent needs of children and young people fleeing Ukraine, changes in public policies and practices that would enable local authorities and other local stakeholders to be better equipped and positioned to respond to crisis and share knowledge and innovative practices and what is required to move from extraordinary crisis measures to sustainable approaches. It will highlight the importance of UNICEF partnership with local authorities in Europe for an effective coordination of humanitarian response that is best fit to support children’s needs.