Poland is the European country receiving the highest number of refugees from Ukraine (already over 1M according to the United Nations estimates). They are mainly women and children, and arrive in the new country with little to no information on the assistance available and the possible options they have. TSF is starting a new information diffusion project to provide them with essential, tailored information to help them stay safe in the present and make the most informed decisions for their future.

A dedicated team was in Poland this week to finalize the first steps of the implementation of this project. “Thanks to our experience in implementing a large scale information diffusion project in Mexico, we know that it is essential to tailor the installations and the content to each context and location. It was thus important for us to discuss with the refugees, coordinate with the local partners and the other humanitarian organizations assisting the refugees, in order to share information that meets their needs,” explaining Armando Samayoa, TSF Delegate for the Americas & the Caribbean, who launched the information diffusion project in Mexico.

In collaboration with the United Nations Agency for Refugees (UNHCR) and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), TSF will install informative screens in different reception sites for refugees in Poland. These safe spaces are set up by UNHCR and UNICEF to welcome refugees from Ukraine once they arrive in Poland, and provide special support to the most vulnerable populations, like women and children. In each place, the information displayed will be adapted to the location and the needs of the assisted populations.

Before launching the project, the team in the field has assessed the needs and identified the kind of information that would be the most relevant and important for the refugees arriving in Poland and for those already settled in the country who go to the reception sites to receive cash assistance or psychological support. Besides administrative and legal assistance, mental health support will be one of the most important needs. Therefore, the content will range from practical information on administrative procedures to security and legal advice, but one of the priorities will also be to pass on reassuring messages and mental health support.

It would be really good to have all the information gathered in one place. Lots of people arrive here and have no information at all. There is a huge influx of people lacking information. Besides, young people can access to some of this information through social media but old people can’t“. This is how a Ukrainian family at the Blue Dot in Krakow welcomed the information on the implementation of this new project.

An agreement is already in place with Two Blue Dots and one Protection Hub in Warsaw, Gdynia and Rzeszow. The other locations are being assessed and validated in collaboration with the local partners. Arriving in a new country, often leaving on short notice, after long and tiring journeys, can be extremely challenging and sometimes dangerous. The information provided on the screens will help these refugees to take again control over their life in a safe environment.

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