Stepping up to support Ukrainians arriving in Ireland
We quickly identified practical ways in which we could ease the stress of starting a new life in an unknown country. By working closely with government departments, we developed key supports and created informational videos in Ukrainian, which were shared via social media directly within the Ukrainian community. Some of the initiatives developed included:
- Removing fees on money sent to or received from Ukraine, through our partner Western Union, in Post Offices.
- Assisting with the opening of over 2,800 current accounts, that were fee free for 12 months.
- Offering a physical postal address for those who did not yet have a permanent fixed address through our Address Point service, enabling access for Ukrainians to any social welfare payments to which they are entitled.
- Providing over 15,600 An Post Mobile sim cards with one month of free credit, as well as free calls and texts to the Ukraine for those arriving into Ireland following the Russian invasion.
- Accepting over €1.25m in donations at local Post Offices, with donations going to the UNICEF and Irish Red Cross Ukraine support appeals, and for which we waived our handling fees.
- Providing free postage for over 90,000 letters and parcels to Ukraine, working with our partners in the Polish postal service and Ukrainian postal service, Ukrposhta, which continues to operate despite the massive challenges facing its staff and distribution system.
Polina Afanasyeva is a Ukrainian journalism student who fled the war in Ukraine and found a home with a host family in Dublin. She joined An Post as a member of our communications team based in the GPO. During her time with An Post Polina worked on a variety of communications projects including documenting An Post’s range of supports for Ukrainian refugees in Ireland.
“Millions of Ukrainians have fled their homes and have gone abroad in search of refuge, it is so dangerous to stay there. Irish people have come together and helped, your sincerity has so impressed me. I want the war to end. I also want to say ’Thank You’- Ireland has
done everything to support Ukraine and has done everything to support us here “ – Polina Afanasyeva
- Our employees also volunteered to support the Irish Red Cross in managing the large response from people across Ireland who pledged to help accommodate Ukrainians arriving in March 2022.
“An Post and most especially the staff stepped up when it was needed. … without the assistance of An Post, we would not have been able to respond as quickly as we did.” – Liam O’Dwyer, General Secretary of the Irish Red Cross in Ireland.
“This year has been tough but with your support we could adjust to our new reality and stand up to the challenges. Your hearts have been beating in one rhythm with Ukrposhta, for which
we are endlessly grateful.” – Ukrposhta, the Ukrainian postal service.