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WFP distributes complementary cash assistance to pensioners in Ukraine thanks to European Union and other donors

KYIV – The UN World Food Programme (WFP), in collaboration with the Ministry of Social Policy and the Pension Fund of Ukraine, has started transferring complementary cash payments to pensioners in regions most affected by the war.

In accordance with the policy of the humanitarian country team in Ukraine, WFP prioritizes the use of cash assistance to support Ukrainians affected by the war. WFP has distributed more than US$500 million to more than 3 million Ukrainians since April 2022, in close coordination with the Government and other humanitarian actors.  

Through this new initiative, WFP provides complementary cash assistance for pensioners living in territories of active or possible hostilities (as determined by the Government), who receive less than UAH 3,000 (US$81) in pension payments and have not received other forms of cash assistance since March 1, 2023 (such as living allowances for internally displaced persons, or cash assistance from international organizations). 

Pensioners meeting the conditions for this assistance will receive a monthly payment from WFP for an amount equal to the difference between the pension they already receive and the amount of UAH 3,000, with the minimum payment amount set at UAH 100. The funds are paid directly by WFP to the bank account on which pensioners receive their usual pension payments, with no need to register or apply for the additional assistance. 

The programme targets approximately 260,000 pensioners initially, who will receive the payments for at least four consecutive months. For the first payment this month, WFP expects to distribute approximately US$3 million. 

“With prices rising due to the war, we know that millions of people living in regions most exposed to fighting find it difficult to afford basic necessities, and that many of them have been skipping meals or buying lower quality, less nutritious food”, said Matthew Hollingworth, WFP Country Director in Ukraine. “We work to support the most vulnerable through existing social assistance systems to ensure that our programmes complement the Government’s assistance,” Hollingworth added. 

"During the war, Ukrainians living in the territories where hostilities are taking place often need additional financial support. The joint project of the Ministry of Social Policy, the Pension Fund and the WFP made it possible to provide such support - and to provide it to those citizens who do not have cash supplements from other sources," said First Deputy Minister of Social Policy, Daria Marchak. 

The programme is initially funded by the European Union, with additional contributions from Norway, Sweden and private donors.  

The European Union is one of WFP’s main partners for cash and food assistance in Ukraine. Last month the EU donated an additional €6.4 million to WFP to support cash assistance to vulnerable Ukrainians. Overall since March 2022, the European Union has contributed more than €25 million to WFP for both cash assistance and food distributions to Ukrainians living near frontline areas.    

Cash assistance is one of many ways WFP supports Ukrainians affected by the war. WFP also distributes food parcels in areas closest to the frontline, where food is hard to find or very expensive, and is supporting the safe release of mined agricultural land in the Kharkiv region to help farmers and food producers resume work. WFP also chartered 24 vessels carrying Ukrainian grain through the Black Sea Initiative, which, while active,  helped to sustain agricultural activity and boost Ukraine’s economy.  


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The United Nations World Food Programme is the world’s largest humanitarian organization, saving lives in emergencies and using food assistance to build a pathway to peace, stability and prosperity for people recovering from conflict, disasters and the impact of climate change.


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Antoine Vallas, WFP/Kyiv, +380 952501154

Nataliia Nychai, WFP/Kyiv, +380 931880938

Anastasiia Honcharuk, WFP/Kyiv, +380 660565415