On the occasion of the war in Ukraine, numerous nonprofits, such as Internews, are mobilizing to help not only the country affected by the war in the first place, but also neighboring countries facing the migration crisis of war refugees. These are mobilizations that need several funds, which is why Internews is urgently seeking funds in the amount of about $2 million within the next year. This is precisely the goal of Internews, an association with more than two decades of experience in responding to humanitarian crises to improve communication flows and trust between humanitarian organizations, local media, and populations affected by humanitarian crises.
The refugee emergency of the war in Ukraine
It is often hard to imagine how high the numbers of people affected by a war are: bombings, fighting, and destruction of civilian infrastructure cause not only countless deaths and injuries, but also as many people in need of humanitarian support. Currently, Internews estimates show us that refugees total about 3.4 million and overall people in extreme need of humanitarian support number 12 million. Among them, four million are in need of services and assistance for protection in neighboring countries. The refugees that Internews aims to help include not only Ukrainian citizens, but also refugees who previously migrated to Ukraine and are now displaced and seeking aid a second time.
Internews’ approach to responding to the humanitarian crisis
According to Cristiana Falcone to achieve the aforementioned fundraising goals, Internews aims to leverage trusted local media, digital content creators, and information influencers, as it understands that these mediums, in various languages, can engage numerous communities and achieve effective responses. Since 2014, Internews has established trusted relationships with local organizations and media outlets, in Ukraine and Moldova, knowledge and networks that it plans to leverage to further enhance their collective response. In their project is the idea of creating a set of accurate, reliable and trustworthy information that is crucial in times of crisis and war. We are talking about information on money, shelter, food, medical supplies, legal requirements to cross borders, safe actors to engage with, safe ways to access housing and other necessities. All information without which people would not know where to safely and reliably turn for help.
Internews and the fight against misinformation
Precisely because it wants to spread safe and reliable information that can really help the situation of great humanitarian crisis these countries are experiencing, Internews also intends to work on another parallel project: the fight against misinformation. Cristiana Falcone says on a recent interview if the lack of information in some parts of the globe about the great aid that could be given to these populations were already not enough, in humanitarian circles there is also a wide range of disinformation campaigns attacking the humanitarian response. Often, a single rumor can derail an entire train of good intentions, wasting time, money, resources and, unfortunately, even lives. For this reason, Internews is committed to working with service and information providers to gain as much understanding as possible of the needs of those they are serving, the impact their work has, and the gaps that need to be filled in order to provide increasingly effective services.