Creating resilient families in Ukraine

“This project supports parents who are close to burnout. The materials enable them to trust me and open up without fear of judgement.”

Victoria is a mentor for displaced families in Ukraine – and a big advocate of Viva’s Resilient Families programme.

When the Ukraine crisis broke out in February 2022, we became involved in conversations with different organisations and networks seeking to respond quickly. One of these was Innovista, a charity focused on equipping leaders and with a wide network of partners in Ukraine and Moldova.

With them, we rapidly redeveloped our Covid Phone Mentoring programme into a new version that directly addressed the issues which families face during conflict – and ‘Resilient Families’ was born.

Victoria told our partner Innovista about a family where the youngest child, aged six, was really struggling – not eating, speaking and refusing to go to school.

She says, “Resilient Families had a profound effect on them as a family. It enabled them to ‘speak out’ and not keep secret what they had been carrying for almost a year. The session where we talked about mental health was very intense and the family discussed emotions and feelings for the first time.”

A smartphone app measures the programme’s impact. Our data shows the material is reaching a wide range of situations – some families who are still in Ukraine, some who are in Ukraine but left home, and some in another country. Many are separated from immediate family so Resilient Families is extra crucial for support. Please pray for many more people to access this Programme.

Article by Kezia M’Clelland, Viva’s Children in Emergencies Specialist