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UniCredit Bank and East Europe Foundation launched a joint social project "Heat of the Heart"


On March 12, 2015, UniCredit Bank and East Europe Foundation announced the launch of a new joint Heat of the Heart social project. The purpose of the initiative is to establish a system of mental health recovery and social inclusion of immigrants in Zhytomyr region.

According to the recent data as of February 2015 the total number of immigrants in Zhytomyr region is 6622 persons, including 1805 children, 2115 pensioners and disabled people, 874 men, 1828 women. Approximately 25-30 forced migrants are arriving every day. They are suffering post-stress condition which complicates adaptation to a new location and new cultural environment, and therefore they need urgent individual and group psychological assistance.

"Today the question of the work with consequences of events in the East of the country and with people who have become hostages of this situation is extremely sharp and needs every support from state as well as from society and NGOs. Due to the Heat of the Heart project internal refugees will be able to adapt quickly to the new realities of their life, a new environment and new opportunities - said Irina Kobylchenko, Director of Identity and Communications at UniCredit Bank. - I hope that our joint project will become an effective tool in the rehabilitation of the internal refugees and will draw attention of the community to the existing problems of adapting our citizens from the affected areas".

5 places of compact residence - Zhitomir Hotel, Teteriv Health resort for parents with children, Olympiets Sport camp, Denyshi Health resort, Sportyvnyi Hotel – were selected for the project implementation. In the frames of the project professional psychologists, who will obtain special education, will conduct individual and group meetings with migrants in order to provide permanent psychological assistance. It is expected that about 500 people of different age groups will receive psychological assistance and will begin the process of restoring their mental health. Also 5 seminars “Tolerance and prevention of cross-cultural conflicts” and "Life in a new city - benefits and challenges" training will be held. The participants will learn how to recognize and avoid hate speech; discover the problems of national communities and the human rights situation in the region. In addition, participants will learn modern methods of employment and self-employment in Zhytomyr region.

"We understand that people, who have been forced to flee their homes, have many extremely important priority needs. However, international experience shows that these people do not yet fully realize how strong is their need for qualified support that will help to accept situation and to adapt to new conditions. We sincerely hope that our project will help." - says Victor Lyakh, President of Eastern Europe.

To recall, earlier partners implemented a number of projects aimed at helping vulnerable groups in the process of social integration and the development of communities in Ukraine. The main focus of charitable projects was on such vulnerable local citizens as the elderly and young people living in small towns in Zhytomyr, Poltava and Cherkasy regions.



Ukrsotsbank is one of the largest universal banks of Ukraine, operating in the local market since 1990. The bank offers full range of services to individuals and corporate clients.

The renovated Ukrsotsbank emerged on 31 October 2016 as a result of strategic deal whereby 99.9% of Ukrsotsbank shares have been transferred from UniCredit Group to ABH Holdings S.A. (АВНН) in exchange for a minority 9.9% stake in ABHH. Thus, the bank has combined 26-year-old traditions of Ukrsotsbank’s client-centric attitude, European quality of service inherent to UniCredit, as well as international banking expertise of ABHH in a number of European countries including CIS. Thanks to the successful synthesis and synergy of the two assets of ABHH in Ukraine, Ukrsotsbank and Alfa-Bank, the banking market of Ukraine will see the rise of a new stronger financial institution. This, in turn, will spur up technological advance, increase efficiency, improve quality of service for the clients, reduce cost of banking services whereas their range will inevitably expand.

The extensive retail network of Ukrsotsbank consists of 237 branches, its headcount reaching nearly 5 thousand employees.

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