Norwegian Refugee Council Considers Housing Programmes Important for the Ukrainians

2Today, on December 5, Chairman of the Fund’s Board Serhii Komnatnyi and First Deputy Chairman of the Board Ivan Parukh conducted a working meeting with representatives of the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC) – NRC Country Director in Ukraine Christopher Mehley and Protection and Advocacy Coordinator Kristina Nechayeva.

The Head of the Fund got the guests acquainted with the programmes being administered by the State Fund for Support of Youth Housing Construction. He emphasized that 110 regional housing programmes for citizens operate along with the state ones. The Norwegian Council’s representatives were interested first and foremost in the variants of providing IDPs with housing. Relevant information was given regarding this issue. In particular, 20 local programmes envisage IDPs’ participation.

Having dwelled upon the Fund’s cooperation with international governmental and non-governmental organizations, Serhii Komnatnyi shared some ideas, which are at the stage of conceptual procession now, including those with foreign partners of the State Fund for Support of Youth Housing Construction. This includes development and adoption of legal basis of social rental housing, setting of housing cooperatives for IDPs.

Another mechanism that can potentially bring displaced person closer to his/ her own housing is forming a pool of donors to launch the mechanism of apartments purchase envisaged by Affordable Housing programme with the help of loans with 7 % interest rate with the first installment of 10 % of housing cost. This, in Serhii Komnatnyi’s opinion, will extend the circle of real applicants for their own housing at the expense of those who can’t afford contributing 50% of its cost. The refunding of loans would be directed at new borrowers’ financing.

3NRC representatives presented the directions of NRC’s activities. Its representation in Ukraine was opened in 2014 to provide practical assistance to people who suffered from the war in the East of our state. NRC’s main activities are legal consulting of IDPs, housing and infrastructure renovation located near confrontation line, as well as providing IDPs with primary living needs. Therefore, the guests were primarily interested in the conditions of work of Luhansk and Donetsk regional departments of the State Fund for Support of Youth Housing Construction.

Assessing the received information, Christopher Mehley called the programmes of the State Fund indeed important for people, the ones bringing real benefits to Ukrainian citizens.

Parties will continue the commenced dialogue for searching sustainable solutions for the sake of IDPs – the citizens of Ukraine.