Since the very beginning of the Russian full-scale invasion of Ukraine, National Network for Children has been active in assisting Ukrainian refugees along several lines:
– advocacy and campaigning at the highest state level and within several international coalitions;
– monetary support (from all our private donations from the end of February 2022 onwards) for the Women’s Consortium of Ukraine on the field in Ukraine;
– fundraising for refugees in Bulgaria;
– through the activities of our constituent NGOs – working directly with refugees around Bulgaria.
• Immediately after the start of the invasion, through an open letter, NNC called on the Bulgarian State to support the people of Ukraine with all its resources;
• Later on, we began providing regular expert assistance to the working group at the Council of Ministers dealing with the refugee situation;
• We have been also actively participating in all discussions of the international coalition of EUROCHILD and ECPAT – Eastern Europe on the Russian war against Ukraine;
• On the 28th of February, NNC launched the “Together for the Children of Ukraine” campaign and took the commitment to redirect all our private donations, within the next 6 months, to the Women’s Consortium of Ukraine, which is working on the field in Ukraine. This organization provides children and families with food, medicine, diapers, etc. around Ukraine, supports the evacuation of citizens and renders psychological assistance to them. Only in the first month and a half of the campaign, National Network for Children collected 13,360 Bulgarian leva for the children of Ukraine from 160 individual donors. The current amount of donations in this campaign is approximately 17 000 Bulgarian leva;
• Our member organizations around the country (incl. in Varna and Ruse, where we face the largest refugee flow) have been providing over 30 different kinds of services to Ukrainian refugees;
• Wе are constantly updating our website and other communication platforms with important announcements concerning Ukrainian refugees in Bulgaria (on different local campaigns and initiatives);
• Within our annual “Golden Apple” award ceremony, NNC awarded volunteers and organizations who had demonstrated exceptional activity in helping Ukrainian refugees in Bulgaria;
• Together with the Museum of Children’s Creativity (Ukraine) and Agency 121, NNC established the “For Ukrainian Refugee Children” Fund, which is providing financial support to NNC member organizations that are working directly with Ukrainian refugees. We have been collecting donations for the Fund within the interactive exhibition “Little Witnesses of the War”, which displays drawings by Ukrainian children who have found shelter in Bulgaria. The exhibition started from the Sofia metro and continued through several key locations in the capital city, including the Bulgarian National Assembly.
Our expert role is particularly important in the current severe political crisis in Bulgaria, in which the fourth parliamentary elections are to be held within just one year. National Network for Children remains in full mobilization mode and is determined to continue providing active assistance to Ukrainian refugees.