SITUATION AT A GLANCE
New logistics capabilities for Ukrainian refugees
- HCSOM is the largest aid organization in Hungary and in the region
- number of its full-time staff: 4500, number of volunteers 12000, number of social institutions 380
- technical capacities: 5 ambulances, 15 vehicles providing general medical services, 5 buses providing medical assistance, 3 mobile kitchens, nearly 100 mixed-profile minibuses, 10 trucks and a sufficient amount of other mobile equipment
- mobile camp with a capacity to accommodate 500 people, with tents, containers, sleeping and WASH facilities, as well as health care support
- on-site guide point
- in the immediate vicinity of the Ukrainian border (within 30 km) six of our charitable institutions/groups are in operation:
- Gacsály residential institution for 160 people
- Tarpa residential institution for 100 people
- Fehérgyarmat institution providing day care assistance for 50 people
- Vásárosnamény charity group warehouse + office
- Szatmárcseke charity group warehouse + office
- Kisvárda charity group warehouse + office
Winterization Plan for the Ukrainian refugee response
In anticipation of the cold weather and the arrival of the winter crisis period, the winterization of the humanitarian program for Ukrainian refugees has begun. In the process, great attention is being paid to effectively meeting the needs of vulnerable refugee families, including the elderly, children and people with disabilities.
As the original refugee reception centers were built during the winter, the necessary infrastructure is mostly already in place and just needs to be put into operation. The winterization tasks are being carried out within the framework of the so-called Winterization Program of the Hungarian Charity Service of the Order of Malta.
Priority tasks identified for winterization are as follows:
- the air conditioners used in the summer will be replaced with winter heating units, so that Ukrainian refugees arriving at the relief point can wait in 4 heated containers and, if necessary, 2 heated medical containers;
- Relief workers will provide donations of warm clothes and blankets to the arrivals, which will be prepared in a separate tent in a clear and easy-to-read way, so that everyone can easily find the clothes they need;
- personal hygiene kits will be provided on request for those arriving at the relief point;
- hot meals will continue to be provided free of charge at the aid point, but the number of portions will be increased, as well as the calorie content of the meals and the general composition of the food packages will be adapted to the winter weather conditions;
- hot tea, coffee and soup will continue to be available free of charge for those who come;
- in addition to clothing, sleeping bags will also be provided to refugees where necessary;
- patio heaters will be placed outdoors, and a training video has been produced to instruct colleagues on how to operate them safely.
Integration and support activities for livelihood establishment at the national level
The Hungarian Charity Service of the Order of Malta continues to assist Ukrainian refugees on a national level, including hotspots in Beregsurány, Budapest, Debrecen, Miskolc and Győr, where it receives and assists families according to their needs – providing temporary accommodation, organizing transportation, etc. In addition to the relief hotspots, the Hungarian Malta has an extensive logistics network with warehouses and donation collection points across the country.
Refugees currently residing in Hungary are in a situation of habitual residence, their priorities are to receive assistance with settlement and permanent residence. This is a completely different task in character from the previous ones, the level of action and development assistance following the humanitarian aid. To this end, the Hungarian Charity Service of the Order of Malta has extended its integration program, which began in 2015 and was extended in 2018, to include refugees from other third world countries, in particular Ukrainian refugees.
Under this program, we provide Ukrainian refugees with:
- reception and any related essential tasks
- assistance with legalisation, citizenship administration and livelihood establishment in Hungary after arrival
- social work for integration, and psychosocial support
- other elements of livelihood establishment, such as health care, language training, cultural integration and labor market integration
- follow-up, care and accompaniment by family-focused social workers
- health status assessment (chronic diseases, medication needs, etc.)
- for children, acceptance of school certificate, continuation of education
- assessment of work experience (previous jobs, qualifications, experiences, interests, other foreign language skills, etc.) and labor market integration
- Hungarian language training
- inculturation support
- group and individual mental health sessions, provisions of psychological support
- material and financial support at individual and family level
- individual housing (separate homes for each family) with full coverage of expenses for utilities, telephone and Internet
Within the framework of this program, the Hungarian Charity Service of the Order of Malta is currently providing long-term integration support to nearly 500 Ukrainian families nationwide.
The humanitarian activity of the Hungarian Charity Service of the Order of Malta since the outbreak of the Ukrainian war
Since the onset of the war in Ukraine, the Hungarian Charity Service of the Order of Malta assisted a total of 52 388 refugees, distributed 253 million HUF worth of donations, and delivered 183 tons of aid to Ukraine.
Since the beginning of the conflict, the Charity Service transported or organised the transport of 21 331 persons to their desired destinations. The organization provided 9049 refugees with shelter within its own institutions or in accommodations offered by partner organisations and donors. Altogether 505 refugees received medical care from the Hungarian Charity Service.
The donation collection points, opened to receive non-perishable foods and hygiene products are operating in 68 locations nationwide. The donations distributed so far to support refugees have amounted to 253 million HUF. However, besides distributing donations to Ukrainians within Hungary, assisting the people in Ukraine is also an important part of the Charity Service’s work. To this end, 183 tons and 192 million HUF worth of donations were delivered to Ukraine.
Photos: Hungarian Charity Service of the Order of Malta