13:11 20.06.2024

30 years and still standing with the people in Ukraine: UNHCR opens photo exhibition on its work with and for the people in Ukraine

4 min read

The UN Refugee Agency is launching a photo exhibition to highlight three decades of working with and for people affected by displacement and war.

20 Jun 2024

To mark 30 years of presence, work and impact in Ukraine, UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, is launching a photo exhibition, which will start in the Museum of the History of the City of Kyiv on 20 June on the occasion of World Refugee Day, and then travel across the country.  

The exhibition “Providing HOPE away from HOME” features 30 photos that capture significant milestones in UNHCR’s work in Ukraine — from supporting the return of Crimean Tatars to their homeland in the 1990s to assisting millions displaced and affected by a decade of war.   

Visitors will also be able to listen to audio narratives from people supported by UNHCR throughout three decades, and from the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, Filippo Grandi, as well as from UNHCR’s Goodwill Ambassador, American actor Ben Stiller.  

These first-hand accounts offer a glimpse into the remarkable resilience and courage of people who have been forced to flee from their homes and communities to save their lives and find safety and solutions.  

“With this photo exhibition, we highlight three decades of working with and for the people in Ukraine, and of ensuring access to protection, humanitarian support and durable solutions for forcibly displaced and other war-affected people, returnees, refugees and stateless people across the country. We at UNHCR are grateful for the strong partnership and collaboration we have enjoyed with the Government of Ukraine and its authorities, regional and local communities throughout these years. We are very proud to have worked with and for the incredibly courageous and resilient people living in Ukraine. Their strength and creativity in the face of unimaginable threats, pain and challenges continues to inspire and motivate us every day, as we deliver our protection, housing and recovery programs geared to preserve hope and belief in Ukraine as a country to remain in, return to, and build a home and a future in,” says Karolina Lindholm Billing, UNHCR’s Representative in Ukraine.  

“Our Government recognizes people as the highest priority. It is essential to support them during their displacement and create the conditions for their return. The strong partnership between the Government of Ukraine and UNHCR has been crucial in aiding millions of Ukrainians affected by Russia’s war. Support geared towards the recovery and reconstruction of Ukraine directly contributes to enabling displaced Ukrainians to return home. Together, we are committed to ensuring individuals receive the protection and assistance they need, paving the way for safe and dignified returns. It is also critical to support Ukrainians in preserving their identity and cultural heritage during these challenging times. This exhibition commemorates our joint efforts over the past three decades and reinforces our dedication to continuing this vital work,” says Andrii Sybiha, First Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine. 

“During the war, the topic of refugees and forced displacement has already become a daily reality for many of us, but it still remains very relevant and requires attention. Through the exhibitions at the Museum of the History of the City of Kyiv, we have already repeatedly used the language of art to show the daily destructive impact of the war on the lives of Ukrainians. With this exhibition, we want to emphasize that people who fled from the war need support in restoring hope for their happy future. Through the joint efforts, we will be able to draw the world’s attention to the courage and resilience of those who were forced to leave their homes and rebuild their lives due to the full-scale Russian invasion in Ukraine,” said Diana Popova, Director General of the Museum of the History of the City of Kyiv.  

After establishing an operational presence in Ukraine in 1994 and supporting the repatriation of Crimean Tatars who had been mass deported during World War II, UNHCR worked with the Government of Ukraine to build an asylum system in the country that enabled over 2,000 refugees from countries like Afghanistan, Iran and Syria to find safety and a new home in Ukraine.  

Since the start of the full-scale Russian invasion of Ukraine on 24 February 2022, the Agency supported 4.3 million people in 2022 with different humanitarian and recovery programmes; 2.63 million people in 2023; and has so far in 2024 delivered more than 857,000 multisectoral services to war-affected people across the country. 

The exhibition will be opened for the general public from 21 to 30 June in the Museum of the History of the City of Kyiv, Bohdana Khmelnytskoho St, 7, Kyiv. 

Opening Hours: 12:00-19:00 (Wednesday-Sunday) 

Admission: Free of charge