War in Ukraine: responding

The brutal war in Ukraine has triggered the largest war-related migration of people since the Balkan War of the 1990s. This page contains information for parishes and individuals seeking to respond.
#WePrayForUkraine
  • The UN estimates that 12 million people inside Ukraine will need relief and protection, while more than 4 million Ukrainian refugees may need protection and assistance in neighbouring countries in coming months.
  • Most of those fleeing are women and children, the elderly and the sick. Most are leaving with the few possessions they can carry.
  • Those left behind face an uncertain future. People are living with no food, no water, no heat, no electricity. They need urgent respite from violence and humanitarian assistance.
  • Despite the heart wrenching stories and distressing pictures coming out of Ukraine, there are practical ways in which we can all help to show solidarity and support with those most affected.

Parish toolkit

Pray

 

The first thing we can do is pray. On the morning of the invasion of Ukraine the Archbishop of Canterbury and York issued a call for people to pray for the people of Ukraine and Russia and for peace.

Churches in UK and Ireland hold day of prayer for Ukraine

Christians across the UK and Ireland will be joining in prayer for Ukraine on Sunday April 3.

As well as individual churches incorporating special prayers into services, there will be public acts of witness at 2pm in towns and cities, organised by Christian Aid and Churches Together in Britain and Ireland (CTBI)

You can join in by:

  • Reading out one of our prayers for Ukraine in your service on 3 April
  • Organising a visible act of witness with other local churches at 2pm

Read more about how to get involved

A group of refugees prepare to cross the border from Uzhhorod in Ukraine to Vyšné Nemecké in Slovakia Ukrinform

Please find below two prayers which can be used to pray for the situation.

We also have a page of resources including prayers and readings chosen for prayer services for Ukraine.

Prayer for the Peace of the World

Almighty God,
from whom all thoughts of truth and peace proceed:
kindle, we pray, in the hearts of all, the true love of peace
and guide with your pure and peaceable wisdom
those who take counsel for the nations of the earth
that in tranquillity your kingdom may go forward,
till the earth is filled with the knowledge of your love;
through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord,
who is alive and reigns with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever.

Download the prayer for the Peace of the World graphic

A Prayer for Ukraine

God of peace and justice,
we pray for the people of Ukraine today.
We pray for peace and the laying down of weapons.
We pray for all those who fear for tomorrow, 
that your Spirit of comfort would draw near to them.
We pray for those with power over war or peace, 
for wisdom, discernment and compassion
to guide their decisions.
Above all, we pray for all your precious children, at risk and in fear, 
that you would hold and protect them.
We pray in the name of Jesus, the Prince of Peace.
Amen.

Archbishop Justin Welby
Archbishop Stephen Cottrell 

Download the prayer for Ukraine graphic

Give

There are two safe and secure ways where your gift can support those most in need:

The first is through the Disasters Emergency Committee’s Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal which is supported by a number of charities including Christian Aid, the ecumenical relief and development agency of the British and Irish churches. Your gift will help provide food, bedding and temporary accommodation for people who have fled the war in Ukraine.

The second is through the USPG-Diocese in Europe Emergency Appeal which is looking to support the front line work of chaplaincies across Europe as well as Christian charities carrying out humanitarian work both in Ukraine and responding to the arrival of refugees in neighbouring countries.

Please avoid organising charitable collection of toys, clothes and bedding as this is often inappropriate and not what is most needed. 

Act

There are thought to be more than three million refugees who have now fled Ukraine. Many of these will seek to join family or friends in other European nations. The UK Government has announced that there will be two routes for Ukrainians fleeing the war to reach the UK.

The first is a family visa system which is open to the extended family members of Ukrainians with permanent status in the UK (e.g. Indefinite Leave to Remain), and Ukrainian family members of British nationals and EU citizens with settled or pre-settled status. If you are in touch with Ukrainians in your community you can direct them to how to apply and the eligibility rules here.

Details of how individuals, companies and community groups can sponsor Ukrainians without family ties are now coming out. You can read fuller details of this in the toolkit above.

A Government FAQ and registration of interest form are now live. You can also register your interest as a potential sponsor at Sanctuary Foundation.

We will update this site regularly as more details emerge. The scheme is expected to launch for individuals on Friday 18/03/2022

If you have broader questions about how your church might be able to be part of sponsorship schemes you can also contact our National Community Sponsorship Representative Domenica Pecoraro.

This section will be updated as more details emerge.

Female choristers are shown singing in red cassocks in the cathedral Truro nave and a Ukrainian flag in front of them Hugh Hastings

Truro Cathedral Choir recording a setting of Ave Maria, by Ukrainian contemporary composer Valentin Silvestrov, to raise money for Ukrainian children through Unicef

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Contact the National Community Sponsorship Representative

Ukraine flag flying against a clear but dark sky

Churches stand with Ukraine

Churches and cathedrals have been lit up in the colours of the Ukrainian flag as a symbol of solidarity with those affected by the war.