The United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS)

Strengthening stability of heating supply for the people of Ukraine

More than 320 generators are supporting district heating and healthcare facilities in 13 regions of Ukraine.

The on-going conflict in Ukraine has resulted in substantial damage to the nation's infrastructure and energy networks. As of November 2022, the Ukrainian government confirmed that up to 40 per cent of the country's energy infrastructure had been destroyed. Regions across Ukraine have experienced disruptions in energy and heating supply due to the impaired infrastructure.

UNOPS has been working with the Ukraine Humanitarian Fund (UHF) to help the people affected by this. Together we are providing electricity generators to improve their living conditions and make sure they have access to essential amenities.

At the beginning of 2023, UNOPS helped deliver more than 300 electricity generators to 13 regions in Ukraine as part of an emergency response project to support the needs of Ukrainian communities. Funded by the UHF, the generators will power district heating and healthcare facilities, providing heating and access to essential public services in case of power outages. 

The generators will also make Ukrainian district heating and medical infrastructure more resilient against future shocks and power outages. They will continue to be used as alternative power sources, allowing people to heat their homes and public spaces, and will help to improve access to essential public services should power supply disruptions happen again.

“Emergency projects like this one are incredibly important to keep communities in Ukraine going,” says Tim Lardner, UNOPS Country Director in Ukraine. 

“The project team worked tirelessly to overcome numerous challenges, including supply shortages and logistical bottlenecks. Now that the generators are in place, they will support the resilience of Ukrainian district heating and medical infrastructure in the long term. Should power outages happen again, communities will be able to enjoy a sense of normality nonetheless,” he adds. 

Ukraine’s Minister of Health, Viktor Liashko, says that it has been one the hardest winters that Ukraine has faced “over the years of independence.” He says the ongoing conflict has severely impacted medical facilities across the country, and hindered access to critical healthcare. 

Thanks to support from international partners and the delivered generators, we have been able to power hospitals, ensuring uninterrupted access to critical medical services. I am sincerely grateful to all parties involved for their attention and support to Ukraine in these challenging times.

Viktor Liashko - Minister of Health, Government of Ukraine

Anna Yurchenko, Ukraine's Deputy Minister for Communities, Territories and Infrastructure Development, says the project is making a significant contribution to the emergency recovery of the country’s infrastructure. 

“We are grateful to the UHF-funded project – ‘Strengthening stability of heating supply for Ukraine population’ – implemented by UNOPS,” she says.

“This project helps seven regions of Ukraine to keep warm in houses, hospitals, schools, kindergartens, and other critical infrastructure. This project is a great contribution to the emergency recovery of infrastructure in Ukraine. We hope it is just the beginning of our cooperation,” she adds.  

Explore stories from some of the recipients of the generators.

Yuliya Halayda is the Acting Director of a school in Odesa with around 1,700 students. A missile attack on Odesa had just taken place the night before, affecting energy infrastructure. The power supply was switched off to preserve the grid and renewed after the alarm went off. In case of disruptions like these, the school’s boiler house can use the generator provided by the project as a backup power source.
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This school is also a heating point for the neighbourhood’s residents. When electricity is disrupted, they can come here to charge their phones or have hot drinks.
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This boiler house in Odesa provides heating and hot water to 8 residential buildings with more than 1,600 residents. Before it received the new generator, heating and hot water services were regularly disrupted for long periods of time because of missile attacks on the city’s energy infrastructure.
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Lidiia Burlachuk and Tetiana Voronchuk are heads of a homeowners’ association in Odesa. Temperatures inside the apartments in their buildings barely reached 15°C. The residents had to sleep in warm clothes and use hot water bottles to keep children warm at night. Some tried to warm their apartments with gas stoves, creating a hazard for themselves and their neighbours.
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This maternity hospital in Pervomaysk, Mykolaiv Oblast, which serves the local community, used to spend up to half a day without electricity.
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As a result, the patients had no light in the wards and no access to hot water, which the facility heats with an electric boiler. The patients and the facility staff used candles and flashlights to see in the dark.
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Chief Doctor, Oleh Chekryzhev, and laboratory staff member, Oksana Pysarenko, expressed hope that after connecting the generator, the maternity hospital would be able to offer more comfort to its patients.
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Oksana Pysarenko, laboratory staff member.
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The modular collective centre in Hostomel, Kyiv Oblast, hosts people whose residences were destroyed due to heavy fighting in the area.
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Volodymyr Havrysh, a warden at the centre in Hostomel, stresses that the centre’s infrastructure entirely depends on electricity. With the new generator in place, the residents can reliably have hot water and cook meals around the clock.
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Volodymyr Oliynyk – Deputy Mayor of Ladyzhyn in Vinnytsia Oblast – discusses the local energy infrastructure’s recovery from the severe impact of repeated missile attacks, which left residents without heating for over a month in the winter. The new generator is an important structural element of this recovery work.
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A boarding school for children with cognitive or developmental differences in Kotiuzhany, Vinnytsia Oblast, also received a generator.
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Oleksandr Yazdovskyi ensures that this generator supports the boarding school's infrastructure during electricity cuts so that the residents can enjoy uninterrupted services.
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About this project

Funded by the Ukraine Humanitarian Fund, the ‘Strengthening stability of heating supply for the Ukrainian population'’ project, implemented by UNOPS, provided generators to strengthen the stability of heat and electrical energy supply to communities in 13 regions most affected by the conflict. The project was implemented in cooperation with the Ministry for Communities, Territories and Infrastructure Development of Ukraine, the Ministry of Health of Ukraine, and several Oblast administrations.

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