Between February and October 2022, 4661 children in Ukraine remained without parental care. 250 of them are officially recognized as orphans or their parents are missing. The Ministry of Health predicts that the psychological consequences of the war will affect Ukrainians for 7-10 years and will not be spared from children. Their experiences under shelling, occupation and loss of loved ones can lead to significant psychological problems.
Amid the war, Ukraine is actively working to simplify access to psychological assistance. In particular, First Lady Olena Zelenska launched the National Program of Mental Health and Psychosocial Support. Thanks to this initiative, Ukraine is already building a system of training and certification for psychologists, psychotherapists, psychologists, social workers, and other specialists. This program also envisages the launch of a registry where Ukrainians will be able to select an individual specialist.
Psychological health support for minors is provided by Children of Heroes, a charity organization that takes care of children who lost their parents as a result of the war. Marta Bilyk, the foundation’s chief psychologist, emphasizes the importance of accepting psychological help:
“In all crisis, stressful, difficult situations, it is important that a child always has an adult by his side to whom he can confide his fears, worries and sadness. The children’s guardians and relatives usually need psychological support themselves, as their husbands, wives, brothers, sisters, and children are among the victims. Being captivated by their own feelings, adults often do not notice the child’s grief or do not have the resources or knowledge to support them.
In such situations, a child may experience a double loss – physical (of the deceased adult) and loss of emotional contact with those who remained close.
That is why it is important that families rely not only on their own strength, but also, first of all, turn to professionals for comprehensive assistance, including psychological,” the psychologist explains.
In order to ensure a child’s normal development, we should take care not only of his or her mental state, but also of the society around him or her. That is why the Children of Heroes CF collects information about free psychological assistance that adult Ukrainians can receive from specialized organizations.
We urge you not to neglect your psychological health and share a list of organizations that provide qualified assistance:
- Kyiv City Crisis Center “Sociotherapy”. It provides a wide range of psychological assistance to civilians and the military. The therapy lasts for a month on a full-time basis.
- Lifeline Ukraine. The organization accepts requests from all citizens and helps people in suicidal states. https://lifelineukraine.com/
- Right to Protection CF. Free psychological assistance is provided to IDPs, volunteers and organizations.
- Charitable Foundation “Strong“. Here, people who have experienced sexual violence after February 24 receive free psychological assistance.
- The “Veteran hub” helps the military, veterans and their families.
Hotline: +38 067 348 28 68
- PIN (People in Need). The organization provides first aid around the clock.
Hotline: 0 800 210 160
- Social project “Razom”
30 minutes with a psychologist
- Kellimni psychological help
chat Mon-Fri from 10:00 to 14:00
Psychological help online
- Hotline WORTH LIVING
Online assistance to civilians, military personnel and their families, as well as cancer patients.
As of October 2022, 650,000 Ukrainians have sought psychological help. The Ministry of Healthcare of Ukraine forecast a huge number of people who will need it because of the war. We are talking about 15 million people, 3-4 of whom will need medical treatment. Untreated mental disorders, especially those caused by war, can transform into sleep and eating disorders, exacerbation of addictions, cancer, and heart problems.
Source: Charitable Foundation “Children of Heroes”