March 8, 2022
Help for Ukraine! Information and advocacy resources to help the students in Ukraine
The Russian invasion of Ukraine has triggered international condemnation and what risks to be the worst humanitarian crisis on the European continent in 20 years. The European Students’ Union, together with the Global Student Forum and the Ukrainian Association of Students issued a joint statement condemning the invasion, and many ESU member unions published their statements against the war. The response of the European civil society has been a big mobilisation across the frontiers to provide help and support to people fleeing Ukraine and to those remaining in the country.
This page aims to provide some useful information for students in Ukraine and crossing the border with neighbouring countries, and for activists in Europe and elsewhere who want to support Ukrainian students.
Are you a student in Ukraine?
- The Ukrainian Association of Students (contact: firstname.lastname@example.org) and our member unions, in the neighbouring countries and beyond, are fully committed in supporting people studying in Ukraine that are still in the country or have crossed the border. Check our members’ list and find which unions can help you!
- ESU members and partners are compiling a file with information of help for people fleeing Ukraine, divided per country. The file contains two sheets: ‘Help/Support’ and ‘Transportation’, which includes information on border crossing and once crossed the border. The document is constantly updated: check it regularly!
- The European Youth Forum has gathered three documents to help students in Ukraine: a document with some useful links for the population still in Ukraine, which also includes transport links, at the border and outside Ukraine; a list of safety/security tips; a guide for refugees from Ukraine, in Russian, English and Ukrainian.
- Are you an international student in Ukraine? The Ukrainian government announced the creation of an emergency hotline for African, Asian and other students wishing to leave Ukraine because of Russia’s invasion. The number is: +380934185684. Furthermore, here you can find a series of contacts for people trying to cross the border, asylum and legal advice in Germany, hosts in Germany and Finland, means of transport, psychological support (document not managed by ESU). The Global Student Forum (GSF) is made of continental student organisations, including from Africa and Latin America. Should you need assistance from the student organisations, look if the union of your country is member of GSF. You can contact GSF at email@example.com.
Would you like to support Ukrainian students?
- Look for associations organising donations, giving voluntary help, sending humanitarian aid to Ukraine. In particular, for the organisation of humanitarian help and convoys, get in touch with the Red Cross of your country (here the contacts of the EU Member States’ and Nordic Red Cross offices).
- Donate: the Ukrainian Association of Students have started a bank account to support the Ukrainian efforts of these moments. UAS is committed to use your funds in accordance with your wish (for instance, donations with the subject ‘Humanitarian aid’ will be used only for humanitarian purposes), based on their best conscience and knowledge of the situation. UAS is ready to provide details of future funds movement to ensure full transparency. More details on how to donate to UAS here. Furthermore, the Eastern Partnership Civil Society Forum gathered a series of organisations open for funds, specifying the different aims of these associations: more info here.
- Join a demonstration: you can see here the demonstrations near you, or you can organise one and register it.
- Demand that your Ministries and Higher Education Institutions do their part in welcoming and supporting students and academics leaving from Ukraine (and Ukrainian students already abroad) in pursuing their academic life: you can take inspiration from the joint statement by ESU and several European and international youth and Higher Education organisations. Ask ESU and, especially in cases of international students leaving Ukraine, the Global Student Forum to cosign your demands and support you in addressing your institutions/ministries.
- The Ukrainian Association of Students published an appeal to the Ministries of Higher Education of the European Higher Education Area and to the European organisations in Higher Education. If you share those demands, you can send them to your Ministry. ESU supports the suspension of Russia and Belarus from the European Higher Education Aream and demands to cease contact and cooperation with any central government agency of Russia or any other country that actively supports the Russian invasion of Ukraine and to ensure that they only engage in cooperation with organisations and institutions from Russia where these are clearly based on shared European values.
We recognize the courage shown by those members of Russian civil society who are engaging in protest against the Russian invasion of Ukraine, in spite of great personal risk and ask all members and consultative members of the EHEA to offer support and protection to members of the Russian higher education community taking a public stance against the invasion. Furthermore, we need to recognise that many Belarusian students are de facto living in exile from their country, and with the rapidly deteriorating situation of civil liberties in Russia, this is going to be the case for Russian students in Europe. We ask the Member States and Higher Education institutions to consider the possibility of extending their visas and study periods in Europe.
You can find the PDF version of the guide here!