WHY USAID/OTI IS IN UKRAINE
Russia's unprovoked and unjustified full-scale invasion of Ukraine threatens the sovereignty of a democratic partner and has profoundly altered core transatlantic security principles. Since 2014, OTI has worked in Ukraine to strengthen national unity and build support for Ukraine's reforms and Euro-Atlantic trajectory. Following Russia's full-scale invasion, OTI adapted its Ukraine Confidence Building Initiative (UCBI) to augment the U.S. response. UCBI 4 is a flexible, rapid-response mechanism designed to help Ukraine's citizens, civil society, and government authorities advance Ukraine's unified, democratic, and Europe-oriented recovery in areas most affected by Russia's full-scale invasion.
USAID/OTI’S ROLE IN UKRAINE
OTI works with Ukrainian civil society, government, media, and other partners along three main lines of effort:
- Enhance early recovery and resilience in frontline and liberated communities;
- Reinforce connections between areas temporarily occupied by Russia and the rest of Ukraine and maintain nonviolent civil action; and
- Increase engagement with narratives that reinforce Ukraine's unity and democratic values.
- OTI helps local governments in frontline and recently liberated maintain critical infrastructure operations. For example, OTI delivered 925 generators to local authorities to sustain emergency services, water supply systems, and communal enterprises and health facilities in areas (including liberated Kherson city) where the power supply may be disrupted by attacks.
- OTI support Ukrainian organization to creatively maintain connections with Ukrainians in Russian-held areas. This includes the "Train to Victory," a series of traveling train cars painted by Ukrainian artists to represent stories of bravery and resistance; the "Letters of Love" campaign, which delivered letters of support for Ukrainians in Russian-held areas; billboards in the Kherson region that shine a light on the courageous resistance of Ukrainians under occupation; and the "Yellow Ribbon" viral campaign, which encouraged people globally to post pictures wearing a yellow ribbon - a Ukrainian symbol of resistance - and reached over 31 million people, including Ukrainians in Russian-held areas.
- OTI has provided protective equipment and essential communications equipment to enable local and international journalists to continue their essential reporting on the war. OTI helped establish three press centers that have accredited over 2,000 international journalists from more than 50 countries, and has enabled ten Ukrainian media organizations to continue their work, reaching monthly audiences of approximately five million. OTI is also supporting Ukrainian media activists to counter Russian propaganda and reach domestic and international audiences with pro-Ukrainian narratives.