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Overview of the activities of the Estonian Refugee Council on February 9, 2024

  • We have grown into the largest humanitarian organization in the Baltic States! 
  • We delivered 4 generators to Ukraine, the purchase of which was supported by Estonian donors through the "Give Spark" campaign. Generators are in operation in the local governments of the Zaporizhzhya region, where they help to keep the necessary equipment running in case of power outages and allow those in need to charge communication devices. 
  • We went on a monitoring visit to Kyiv, Dnipro, Zaporizhzhya and Zaporizhzhya region, among other things, we registered for the first time those in need near the front in Komyshuvakh
  • We made videos of Ukrainian women's businesses that got wind from our "Empowering Women" programme. Watch on our YouTube channel. 
  • In December and January, we collected more than 33,000 euros in donations. Thank you!


Humanitarian Assistance Programme
  • We provide multi-purpose cash assistance, with which people can buy food, medicine, hygiene supplies and other basic necessities. As of now, we have given cash-based aid to more than a quarter of a million, or about 264,396 people, worth a total of about 48.5 million euros. Cash-based support per household member in one month is 3,600 UAH (about 92 euros). You can get help for a total of three months. A separate call centre and application platform has been opened for applying for cash-based support in Ukraine: We currently provide support in Zaporizhzhia, Donetsk, Luhansk, Kharkiv, Kherson and Mykolaiv regions. 
  • We offer winter survival financial support to purchase solid fuels such as coal, firewood, briquettes or pellets or to pay for gas heating bills to vulnerable households living in rural and suburban areas. You can apply for help in the same areas where we also offer general cash-based support. During the entire winter season, households are entitled to heating assistance of UAH 17,500 (EUR 450). At the moment we have supported over 15,000 people
  • We have provided food aid to more than 35,000 people in Kharkiv, Donetsk, Kherson and Zaporizhzhia regions. We are part of the Joint Market Monitoring Initiative (JMMI), within which we help the humanitarian aid sector to keep a constant overview of where and how markets in Ukraine are functioning, whether and how quickly essential goods prices rise, etc. Our area of responsibility is Zaporizhzhia, Kherson and Donetsk regions.
  • We started with cash-based aid in Armenia, currently, we have reached over 400 people. Our target group is people aged 70+. The amount of cash-based support per person is 50,000 AMD (approx. 114 EUR) per month.


Livelihoods and Economic Recovery Programme
  • We offer vulnerable women the opportunity to participate in entrepreneurship programmes to gain new knowledge and earn a sustainable income. In addition, we issue agricultural grants. You can find more information about ongoing programs and how to apply on our livelihood programme page.
  • A 6-month mentoring programme is underway in the entrepreneurship programme conducted in cooperation with ERC and Garage48. Last year, 11 sessions were held within the mentoring programme, this year we will continue with individual need-based sessions. Study visits to local businesses will continue in February, where the hosts will share their experiences and programme participants will be able to get an insight into the inner world of local businesses.
  • As of January, the phase of the hydroponic plant growing programme in Jordan ended, during which we built 17 greenhouses. In addition, 100 beneficiaries participated in hydroponics training to increase their knowledge of water-efficient farming methods. Greenhouses allow beneficiaries to grow food for their own consumption or to monetize crops to increase income.


Counselling Programme
  • We advise people on pre-registration in Tallinn (Vambola 6, Eesti Pagulasab office) every day between 10am and 5pm. The helpline +372 5881 1311 (open Mon-Fri from 10 am to 5 pm), e-mail is open to all refugees and institutions and people who help them. Viber, Whatsapp, Telegram channels are also open for counseling at +372 5464 0007. 
  • Monthly trainings supporting adaptation continue across Estonia on five topics: education system, entrepreneurship, legal issues on the example of Estonia and Ukraine, field of work and digital skills. Counseling takes place all over Estonia, both in the form of contact education and online, and nearly 5,000 refugees have taken part in them. 
  • We focus on providing emergency accommodation to those refugees who have suddenly lost their place of residence.


Mental Health and Psychological Support Programme
  • In the direction of mental health, we offer the MindSpring programme to refugees all over Estonia. The first groups started in March 2023 and to date there have been more than 20 groups, 163 people have participated in the groups in Keila, Haapsalu, Viljandi, Pärnu, Sillamäe, Tallinn and Tartu. In January, three youth-oriented groups gained momentum.
Community Programme
  • We organize regular group activities and community events as part of the community programme. In 2024, we will continue with community events and, in addition, we will launch a community council for refugees who have settled in Estonia, more information coming soon.

The community and advocacy programmes are supported, among others, by the United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR).

  • In Georgia, this year we are helping to empower civil society and give more voice to refugees through community councils. Community councils are informal representative bodies of Georgian IDPs and Ukrainian refugees.


Advocacy and Protection Programme
  • In January, we focused on the bottlenecks related to refugee children on the border between the right to asylum and the guarantee of basic rights, including increasing parents' awareness of the child protection system, as well as topics related to, for example, the mobilization of Ukraine and increasing the registration of persons who have received temporary protection in the local government. 
  • We convened the Estonian Refugee Organizations Round Table.

The activities of Estonian Refugee Assistance are largely supported by institutional donors: the European Union (ECHO), the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), USAID/Bureau for Humanitarian Assistance (BHA), the Estonian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, etc.

As individuals and companies, our activities can continue to be supported on our website.

MTÜ Eesti Pagulasabi is a public interest non-profit organization founded in 2000, whose goal is to stand up for the rights and well-being of refugees in Estonia and abroad. The Estonian Refugee Council is a humanitarian aid organization certified by the European Union.

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