Since the start of the full-scale invasion, 5 million people in 8 regions have received aid through the company's Humanitarian Fund

After the full-scale invasion of the Russian Federation, Ferrexpo, like other representatives of steel companies, actively participated in powerful assistance to the country. An iron ore company with assets in Ukraine, which had more than eleven years of experience in cooperation with local communities as part of its charitable initiative, created a special Humanitarian Fund with funding of $15 million – on February 27 one year has passed since its start. In order to support the state’s economy, in April 2022 the group paid in advance more than $35 million (1 billion UAH) in corporate income tax.

Operational reaction

From the first days of the Russian invasion, Ferrexpo supported the communities located next to its enterprises, as well as the regions of Ukraine that were affected by active hostilities from the beginning. Already on February 27, 2022, the company announced the creation of a special Humanitarian Fund to prevent the humanitarian crisis caused by the war. Since its organization, the foundation’s team has been working at an intense pace.

“We received a huge number of applications. Everything had to be considered and processed quickly, because the situation in the first months of the Russian invasion was very difficult and emotional. The fund’s activities began with the definition of a clear work algorithm and areas of responsibility, and effective communication in the team was set up. These steps helped build system support. In addition, all members of the team understood the importance of helping Ukrainians in such a difficult time for the state,” noted Yuriy Khymych, head of corporate social responsibility programs of Ferrexpo in Ukraine.

To ensure prompt response, the Ferrexpo management and the teams of the commercial directorate and the corporate social responsibility (CSR) department of the group’s Ukrainian enterprises were involved in the work of the fund.

Ukraine was also supported by Ferrexpo’s foreign partners. Thus, with the funds provided by the industrial concern Zeppelin (€10,000), the company purchased medicines for Mykolaiv. The companies ThyssenKrupp and Caterpillar, in turn, sent humanitarian aid for the displaced people – food, household goods, furniture, and more.

Ferrexpo also participates in all-Ukrainian charity programs. In particular, the group became a sponsor of the project of psychological support for mothers and their children, which is implemented by the Maria Yefrosinina Foundation «Unbreakable Mom». The company helps finance a special rehabilitation center in the Carpathians.

Help algorithm

During the year of the Humanitarian Fund operation, the company increased its initial funding tenfold – from $1.5 to $15 million.

More than 70 projects are implemented within its framework:

  • logistic support of humanitarian cargo from Europe to Ukraine;
  • purchase of ambulances for hospitals in central Ukraine;
  • repair of premises in local communities for the accommodation of displaced persons;
  • provision of medical equipment and medicines for the treatment of the wounded people;
  • purchase of electronic equipment for documentation by the Ukrainian authorities of damages caused to communities,
  • assistance in transporting animals from zoos in eastern Ukraine.

The Ferrexpo Humanitarian Fund closely cooperates with representatives of local authorities, military administrations, and critical infrastructure institutions, which allows to quickly respond to the urgent needs of the regions. Interaction is carried out exclusively in the legal field, through requests certified by official persons, for example, the mayor’s office or regional military administration. The fund does not ignore any application, it considers and calculates requests, approves them.

“During this extremely difficult time for Ukraine, thanks to the activities of the Ferrexpo Humanitarian Fund, we were able to provide assistance in the amount of $12 million to meet the humanitarian needs of communities in eight regions of Ukraine –  Sumy, Chernihiv, Kharkiv, Mykolaiv, Zaporizhzhia, Dnipropetrovsk, Poltava, and Kyiv. We remain in constant contact with the leaders of the most affected regions of the country, we constantly work with humanitarian requests to ensure the priority needs of the population,” noted Yuri Khymych, head of corporate social responsibility programs of Ferrexpo in Ukraine.

Aid to the military

As a socially responsible business, Ferrexpo has been providing humanitarian support to defenders of Ukraine since 2014. With the start of a full-scale invasion, the company significantly increased this work. The group helps the territorial defense forces, the Armed Forces of Ukraine and rescuers of the State Emergency Service.

Since the beginning of the humanitarian program, the company has handed over 22,400 units of ammunition and protective equipment to the country’s defense forces, in particular, uniforms, body armors, helmets, tactical shoes and first aid kits for the military according to NATO standards for a total amount of $2.7 million.

Ferrexpo also purchased three TOYOTA Land Cruiser-based armored ambulances with a total cost of $300,000 to transport the wounded from the front line – they were specially made in the UAE.

With the beginning of the full-scale war, more than 600 Ferrexpo employees joined the ranks of the Armed Forces – they were all provided with ammunition and protective equipment at the expense of the enterprises. The group pays UAH 500,000 to the family of each employee who gave his life for Ukraine. Employees who have completed their service in the army due to injuries have the opportunity to undergo physical rehabilitation on the basis of the company’s medical and sanitary department, individual psychological consultations and consult on further work at the group’s enterprises.

Support for immigrants

Since the beginning of the war, the Poltava region, where Ferrexpo’s assets are located, has received thousands of displaced persons from various regions of Ukraine who suffered as a result of the Russian invasion. The group provides comprehensive support to those who were forced to leave their homes due to hostilities.

The company provides food, medicine and psychological services for more than 3,000 displaced people. Medical care is also available for them on the basis of its medical and sanitary department. Ferrexpo has been providing its hotel and recreation facilities free of charge for the accommodation of internally displaced persons (IDPs) who came to Horishny Plavni from Kharkiv, Donetsk, Sumy and Zaporizhzhia regions. Since the beginning of the war, 88 evacuees have been employed at the group’s enterprises in Ukraine.

The company provided humanitarian aid in the amount of about $170,000 to a hub for IDPs in Poltava. In addition, Ferrexpo purchased and transferred more than 722 tons of products, more than 25,000 units of household goods for displaced people in the communities of Ukraine.

Community needs

The company already had long-standing partnerships with communities of presence. Thanks to social partnership agreements, projects designed to improve the lives of local residents were implemented here every year. Due to the invasion of the Russian Federation, the initiatives of 2022 were transformed to meet the urgent needs of the people. Through Humanitarian Fund, the group also supported those regions that were invaded by the occupying forces or suffered from hostilities.

The requests that were processed during the year of the war were versatile – from food, hygiene products and ammunition for mobilized employees and rescuers to medical equipment, ambulances and specialized equipment.

Applications were changing depending on the current situation. In particular, communities liberated from the occupiers in Kyiv, Chernihiv, and Sumy regions needed construction equipment, Kharkiv and Zaporizhzhia needed medicines and products, and one of the most urgent issues for Mykolaiv – water supply.

Humanitarian aid Ferrexpo, GMK Center

In particular, Ferrexpo purchased utility and computer equipment, Starlink and communication equipment for Okhtyrka (Sumy region) and the village of Makariv (Bucha District, Kyiv region). In total, the group handed over 14 pieces of equipment – excavators, loaders, tractors for rebuilding territories after the destruction, as well as 20 generators and 70 tons of diesel fuel.

For half a year, the group purchased and delivered meat products for the Kharkiv region – the total amount of this assistance amounted to over UAH 35 million. In addition, the company transferred $500,000 to support war-affected people. For Mykolaiv, where the water supply situation is difficult, Ferrexpo purchased water containers for a total of $84,000 and helped drill wells to provide drinking water to the townspeople.

The group noted, that common to all regions was a great need for vehicles. For 2022, 111 cars were transferred from the company’s balance sheet, worth more than $5.5 million at replacement cost. As part of the humanitarian fund program, 55 vehicles were purchased for the amount of 81 million hryvnias ($2.3 million).

In addition, Ferrexpo continued charitable projects in support of Ukrainian doctors. In 2022, the company purchased 6 ambulasnce for three regions – Chernihiv, Dnipropetrovsk and Poltava with a total cost of more than $300,000, as well as 39 units of medical equipment for medical facilities in these regions. Hospitals in Kremenchuk, Horishni Plavni, Mykolaiv and Kharkiv received medicines worth more than $800,000.

According to Ann-Christin Andersen, head of the Ferrexpo health, safety, environment and community committee, independent non-executive director of the Ferrexpo Board of Directors, the company understands its own role in Ukraine thanks to its experience of cooperation and presence in the life of the country through the Ferrexpo charity fund, which has been providing for more than 11 years direct support to communities.

“We are proud that thanks to our position as a long-term investor in Ukraine, its people and economy, with the beginning of the war we were able to provide targeted support through the special Ferrexpo Humanitarian Fund not only to our communities, but also to other regions of Ukraine that were affected by active hostilities,” said Ann-Christin Andersen.

Ferrexpo remains with Ukraine in the most difficult times for the state and will make every effort to continue providing support. The humanitarian fund is designed to respond quickly to the humanitarian crisis and help overcome it to those who suffered as a result of hostilities or were forced to leave their homes.