Evacuation of children from orphanages and foster families from Ukraine
UPDATE May 11
Fundacja Happy Kids is a leading Polish non-governmental organization, founded in 2001 to provide a chance for a happy childhood for children in Polish orphanages with little to no chances for adoption. It has created 17 family-type foster homes and provides professional foster care, child protection, medical and psychological support to children with psychological trauma, intellectual and physical disabilities, and reunites previously separated groups of siblings in one home.
Since the Russian invasion, Happy Kids assisted Ukrainian authorities in emergency evacuations of children from state orphanages and their caregivers to Poland. Starting as early as February 28th, in cooperation with the city of Łódź and local and international partners, Happy Kids has assisted in evacuation of approximately 2,000 civilians including 1,500 children and guardians from foster care institutions from Kharkiv, Kherson, Lviv, Kiev, Odessa, Poltava, Zhytomyr.
The youngest survivor was 7 days-old when crossing the border. The evacuation were conducted in close cooperation with the Department of the Protection of Children’s Rights and Adoption of the Ministry of Social Policy of Ukraine and Polish authorities, and UN Global Compact Network Poland.
Thanks to the generous support of our donors, we were able to:
assist orphanages, foster families or other forms of foster care, which require immediate evacuation from Ukrainian territory affected by war,
provide support in transportation to the border between Poland and Ukraine,
assist the evacuated children at the border crossings
work with local governments to secure and prepare accommodations ready to meet the needs of the evacuated groups
Now that the children and their care-givers have managed to flee the horrors of war, we focus on providing them with an environment, where they can feel safe, happy and at home. We assist in the following areas: infrastructure and furnishing, food security nutrition, equipment and supplies, direct cash transfers, health care, psychological support and educational support. A significant proportion of children suffers not only from psychological trauma, but from physical or intellectual disabilities. Our continued support, whether a hearing device, specialised therapy, a Polish-language tutor or simply a new bed, would not be possible without your help.
Please consider joining us in providing safety in Poland for most vulnerable Ukrainian children until they will be able to safely return home
In the interest of preserving the life and health of children, in the face of the ongoing war in Ukraine, The Children’s Aid ‘Happy Kids’ Foundation, in cooperation with the City of Łódź, has launched an action to save the most vulnerable victims: children from orphanages and foster care.
The evacuation of orphans from orphanages, foster families and other forms of care from Ukraine to Poland, is coordinated by Aleksander Kartasiński – the President of the ‘Happy Kids’ Foundation and Social Plenipotentiary of the Mayor of the City of Łódź, Hanna Zdanowska, for contacts with Ukrainian authorities on the organization of care for Ukrainian children in Łódź. The ‘Happy Kids’ Foundation is carrying out the evacuation of young refugees in close cooperation with the Department of the Protection of Children's Rights and Adoption of the Ministry of Social Policy of Ukraine and the Ministry of Family and Social Policy of the Republic of Poland. Our organization, together with the City of Łódź, coordinates the relocation of refugees throughout the country in agreement with local government units.
Since the beginning of the war, we have already saved thousands of children (including those with dysfunctions and disabilities) together with their guardians: incl. from Kharkiv, Kherson, Lviv, Kiev, Odessa, Poltava, Volyn, Zhytomyr. The youngest survivors were not even one year old. It is still a drop in the ocean of needs. The situation of children in orphanages and foster care in Ukraine is exceptionally critical.
The intensity of military operations and the cruelty of the Russian aggressor against Ukrainian civilians make our actions focus on saving as many children as possible - in the shortest possible time. At the same time, we are also acquiring places that meet decent housing conditions, adapted to the needs of the evacuated groups of children.
They find a safe haven and care in the Family Orphanages of the ‘Happy Kids’ Foundation, foster families, orphanages in Łódź and other local governments from all over Poland that offer help.
The donations will be allocated for both the immediate needs - transport, food, cleaning products, clothes – and the long-term activities aimed at comprehensive care for war victims, including specialist medical treatment, psychological therapy or legal care.
Let’s save the lives in need together.
We thank you from the bottom of our hearts for every kind of support.