According to the latest reports from Hungarian authorities at the Hungarian-Ukrainian and Hungarian-Romanian borders, the number of refugees admitted to Hungary has surpassed 530,000. This means that, in proportion to the country’s population of around 9.7 million, Hungary has welcomed the highest number of people fleeing the war in Ukraine.
From the very first days of the war, our humanitarian aid program has been going full steam ahead. By pledging several billion forints to support those in need, the Hungarian government has launched Hungary’s largest humanitarian program to date. Besides providing direct assistance to Ukraine, the government continues to coordinate the joint efforts of NGOs, charity organizations and volunteers through the National Humanitarian Coordination Council.
So far, Hungary has provided around HUF 2 billion in humanitarian aid (more than EUR 5.4 million), including HUF 1.35 billion (more than EUR 3.6 million) within the framework of the Hungary Helps Program. On top of this, the Hungarian government earmarked a total of HUF 3 billion (more than EUR 8.1 million) to support six charity organizations.
To centralize and facilitate the work of the organizations involved, the Hungarian government established a Humanitarian Transit Point in BOK Sports Hall, a sports and concert venue in Budapest. Here, facilities including catering, medical care, sanitation and internet access are awaiting all those in need. According to reports from Monday, nearly 9,500 refugees were provided with assistance at this transit point.
Meanwhile, Hungarian Railways (MÁV) has issued 173,000 ‘solidarity tickets’ to refugees, enabling them to travel freely in Hungary.
Education authorities reported that children are continuously being placed in Hungarian education facilities, with 181 kids already enrolled in kindergartens and 758 children going to school in Hungary.
In a statement issued following a meeting of the Humanitarian Council on Monday, Government Spokesperson Alexandra Szentkirályi said that Hungary’s public education institutions aim to help children integrate as quickly as possible. To this end, the government is providing refugee children with individual tutoring five days a week in addition to their compulsory schooling.
According to Szentkirályi, adults will also receive help to find a job: A company commissioned by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade is assisting refugees with employment issues at BOK Sports Hall, and employers can also get support with housing and travel costs for Ukrainian or dual nationals who crossed the border after February 24.
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