In terms of area, Ukraine is the largest state in Europe after Russia.

Since independence from the Soviet Union in December 1991, the country is politically organizing itself as a presidential republic and trying to position itself between Russia in the east and the European Union in the west. Not only the geographical location, but also the composition of the population, which includes Russia's largest group outside Russia, makes this difficult.

Ukraine is the poorest country in Europe with an annual per capita GDP income of US $ 2.963.

Ukraine is known for, among other things, the reactor accident in Chernobyl 1986. The nuclear disaster occurred during the Soviet era, but had economic effects until the 1990s. Chernobyl has been a ghost town since the disaster.

In November 2013 clashes broke out on the Crimean peninsula between separatists loyal to Moscow and pro-European forces. Since then, civil war-like conditions have prevailed in Ukraine. More than 1.6 million people fled the war region in Donbass. A solution to the conflict is still not in sight. Furthermore, women and children in particular suffer from the war. Poverty has risen sharply and many people can only afford the bare essentials - or not even that.

Ukrainian refugee family

Caritas-Spes is a relief, development and social service.

The organization has been a member of Caritas International and Caritas Europa since 1999. Caritas-Spes has more than 30 centers in 12 regions of Ukraine.

The mission of the organization is to fight poverty, exclusion, intolerance and discrimination, regardless of creeds, race or ethnicity.

The social activities of Caritas-Spes are:

  1. Helping needy children, including children's camps, life skills centers, family homes for orphans, social centers for street children, kindergartens and day-care centers;
  2. Support for seniors with health problems (home care and senior citizen housing),
  3. Help for the poor and needy,
  4. Combating drug abuse and helping people with HIV / AIDS,
  5. Moral, social and legal support for prisoners and their families.

With the crisis in the east of Ukraine, little hearts extended its work to the east. We support a container village for refugees in Kharkiv and a home for severely disabled children in Bohukhudiv outside the war zone. In addition, our circle of sponsored children has grown to 80. Our partner in the Ukraine, Caritas Spes, does an excellent job and we are very happy to be able to help so many children together with our local colleagues.