HelpAge International is calling on those providing the emergency response to ensure that the rights and needs of older people are considered in their response plans.
This will require them to think of the following factors:
Evacuation must include support for older people with disabilities and other at-risk groups and their caregivers, particularly in hard-to-reach areas.
Emergency shelters and relief points must ensure prioritised and dignified reception of older people.
Support services must consider older people’s specific health, safety, psychosocial, and mobility needs, as well as further referrals to multi-sectoral agencies.
Relocation to temporary accommodation must take into consideration the requirements of older people and people with disabilities in consultation with them.
Communication with the people affected at all stages must be in a language they understand and information must be communicated via multiple mediums and in accessible formats.
HelpAge International has been supporting older people in Ukraine since 2014. We work in Zaporizhzhia, Donetsk, Dnipropetrovsk, Kharkiv, Lviv, Chernivtsi, and Ivano Frankivsk regions, including in shelters and collective centres for the displaced. Our staff and volunteers are supporting older people in our program areas to ensure their safety and access to services. We are also closely cooperating with local and international partners to further support and advocate for the rights of older Ukrainians in the face of the new wave of displacement.