Conflict in Ukraine – International and in Canada

Two Red Cross volunteers packing supplies

Humanitarian Crisis in Ukraine and surrounding countries
People arriving in Canada from Ukraine

Humanitarian Crisis in Ukraine and surrounding countries

The conflict in Ukraine is having widespread and devastating humanitarian impacts.  Millions have fled the country and millions more are internally displaced. Red Cross teams on the ground in Ukraine and surrounding countries are continuing to provide life-saving humanitarian assistance to those impacted.

At border crossings and across the region, this invaluable support includes food, clean water, cash distribution, hygiene kits, first aid training, medical supplies, health care, including psychosocial support, and winterization items like stoves, fuel and winter clothing.

How the Canadian Red Cross is helping in Ukraine and surrounding countries

The Canadian Red Cross has launched the Ukraine Humanitarian Crisis Appeal to respond to  the vast humanitarian needs that continue to arise due to the conflict. Donations will enable the Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement to respond to humanitarian needs in Ukraine and surrounding countries, which includes immediate and ongoing relief efforts.

To date, the Canadian Red Cross:
  • has contributed more than $107 million to the humanitarian response. This include more than $52 million to the ICRC to provide support in Ukraine, in partnership with the Ukrainian Red Cross, with the remainder going to IFRC to support activities in Ukraine and neighbouring countries.
  • has mobilized several humanitarian experts to support the response in areas such as operations management, migration and displacement, cash assistance, health coordination, shelter and winterization, and communications.
  • has sent more than 39,000 emergency relief items, such as blankets, tarps, and cooking supplies, to Ukraine and neighboring countries, thanks in part to generous support from the Government of Canada.
  • is supporting Mobile Health Units that have provided primary healthcare to more than 3,200 patients in remote areas of Ukraine, where infrastructure have been damaged and access to healthcare has been impacted negatively.
  • provided funding and technical support for the urgent repair of the heating and water supply system of the neonatal and pediatric wards of the Regional Children's Hospital of Cherkasy before the beginning of winter.
  • is supporting the recruitment of 10 psychotherapists for one year at Lviv Regional Clinical Hospital to address the mental health and psychosocial needs of the people impacted by the conflict.

The humanitarian crisis in Ukraine and surrounding countries is evolving daily, and we are committed to continuing to work with the International Red Cross, the Ukrainian Red Cross Society and other local National Societies,  on how to best support those affected by this conflict in the days, weeks and months ahead. 

See our responses to frequently asked questions about the Red Cross response to the humanitarian crisis in Ukraine.

How people living in Canada can help people impacted by the conflict in Ukraine

We are grateful for the concern and generosity of people living in Canada for those affected by the conflict in Ukraine. Here are two of the best ways you can take action today to help those in need:

Make a donation
The easiest way to support the work of the Canadian Red Cross is to donate online, give us a call at 1-800-418-1111. Making a financial donation is always the best way to support our humanitarian efforts on the ground.
The Canadian Red Cross has two options (international and domestic) for people who would like to support the people impacted by the conflict in Ukraine.

International -- Ukraine Humanitarian Crisis Appeal
Money raised by the Ukraine Humanitarian Crisis Appeal will allow the Canadian Red Cross to send personnel, equipment and funds to support the Red Cross Red Crescent Movement response in Ukraine and surrounding countries, including support to those displaced. This could include preparedness, immediate and ongoing relief efforts, long-term recovery, resiliency, and other humanitarian activities as needs arise.
Domestic -- Ukraine Humanitarian Support in Canada Appeal
Money raised by the Ukraine Humanitarian Support in Canada Appeal will enable the Canadian Red Cross to respond to humanitarian needs in Canada as they arise for people displaced due to the conflict in Ukraine. Our work will help to bridge the gaps in social services and support affected individuals and families as they transition to life in Canada. These services may include immediate and ongoing basic needs, referral services, financial support, psychosocial support, granting to community organizations, services to help people displaced connect with their loved ones, and other critical activities that may evolve and change.
Your financial donation directly impacts our ability to take action. Learn more about how you can donate to make a difference.

Organize a fundraiser
If your community group or organization wants to host a fundraiser to help us continue to do our work, our Red Cross fundraising specialists can help support your vision. To create a community fundraiser for the Canadian Red Cross, you can complete our online form to get started today.

How will donations to the Ukraine Humanitarian Crisis Appeal donations be used?

Money raised will enable the Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement to respond to humanitarian needs in Ukraine and surrounding areas. Funds contributed to date are being used to provide neutral and impartial emergency assistance such as vital medical supplies, food, water, clothing, shelter, hygiene items, heating fuel, psychosocial support, and other urgent items to help those in need.  Teams have been on the ground working around the clock to provide humanitarian aid to those impacted, including those who have been displaced.


Ukraine Donor Report July 2022

What is International Humanitarian Law?

International Humanitarian Law (IHL) is a set of wartime rules that protect people who are not (or are no longer) participating in hostilities, including the civilian population, combatants who are no longer fighting because they are wounded, humanitarian workers, medical personnel, and prisoners of war. IHL also restricts the means and methods of war. Its purpose is to limit and prevent human suffering in times of armed conflict. Learn more about International Humanitarian Law.

As part of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) is a neutral and impartial humanitarian actor mandated to speak with all parties who make and influence decisions impacting the victims of armed conflict, and our ability to reach them. Our neutrality and the space to discuss humanitarian issues directly with the parties allows us to move aid across frontlines, facilitate safe passages of civilians, and carry out other vital humanitarian activities.


People arriving in Canada from Ukraine

The people arriving in Canada from Ukraine were forced to leave everything behind, only bringing whatever they could carry. People in vulnerable situations, including women, children, people living with disabilities and the elderly, are among the most impacted. The Red Cross has extensive experience in welcoming new arrivals to Canada, having played an instrumental role in providing support to Syrian refugees in 2016 and Haitian asylum seekers in 2017.

How the Canadian Red Cross is helping people arriving in Canada from Ukraine

In partnership with the Government of Canada, the Red Cross is providing reception services for people displaced from Ukraine as they arrive in Canada at Toronto Pearson International Airport.
Services may include:
  • Reception and registration
  • Information and referrals to additional supports
Registration with the Red Cross helps to connect people to necessary information and resources as they arrive and settle in Canada. It also provides Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada with information which can be used to better understand the needs of people arriving.  
Information on how to access government services and referrals to community service providers are distributed upon arrival.
Experienced clinicians and mental health specialists are also on-site to help refer those needing medical attention or who may be struggling to cope with the impacts on their mental health with appropriate service providers.

The Canadian Red Cross is also providing temporary accommodation in Montreal and support services in Toronto to those fleeing the conflict in Ukraine. This assistance is being provided on behalf of and through referrals from government partners.

At the request of government authorities, the Red Cross provided support services to people fleeing the conflict in Ukraine who:
  • Arrived at Vancouver International Airport until June 30, 2022. These support services have now been transitioned to social services agency S.U.C.C.E.S.S.
  • Arrived at Edmonton International Airport until June 30, 2022.
  • Were staying at temporary accommodations following their arrival at Montréal-Trudeau International Airport on May 29, Halifax Stanfield International Airport on June 2, and to people who arrived at the Greater Moncton Roméo LeBlanc International Airport on June 7.

Welcome Package

If you have arrived in Canada from Ukraine, the Welcome Package below provides resources to help you during this transition period.

Helpful Links