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UNHCR establishes call centres for Ukrainian refugees


People fled Ukraine as of Feb 2023


People displaced internally in Ukraine as of Feb 2023


Of the population forced to leave their homes as of Feb 2023

Establishing a central call centre

As of February 2023, nearly 8 million people have fled the war in Ukraine to neighbouring countries and across Europe. UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, is on a mission to safeguard the rights and wellbeing of refugees and ensure that they can exercise the right to seek asylum and find safe refuge in another state, and return home voluntarily when they choose and when it is safe to do so.

UNHCR, with the support of the United Nations International Computing Centre (UNICC), partnered with industry experts ServiceNow, British Telecom (BT) and Thirdera (formerly Silverstorm Solutions) to set up a regional contact centre (RCC) for refugees fleeing the ongoing war in Ukraine. The new UNHCR RCC solution offers refugees a user friendly, multilingual platform to access vital information on emergency services, assistance and psychosocial counselling services, as well as identifying vulnerable refugees and referring them to specialists for follow up support. The RCC also provides information on education, employment, healthcare, housing and legal support.

The service, which is a cost‑free phone calling system, is now available in Hungary and Poland and can be scaled up to other countries in the region, depending on needs.

Geneva, Switzerland
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Partnering with UNICC and the private sector has allowed us to launch this Regional Contact Centre, the first of its kind, enabling us to communicate with the people we serve, providing them with information, and referring those with vulnerabilities to the services they need.

Mohammed Ghafour

Community‑based Protection Officer

The RCC platform offers a cost‑effective, cloud‑based solution for UNHCR’s efforts in the field. It is built around a BT solution integrated with case management from Thirdera, using ServiceNow’s Customer Service Management (CSM) application, to create and keep interaction records with callers, and identify and refer vulnerabilities to UNHCR and its partners for follow up and response.

With the long-term in mind, the RCC solution is designed to be used in other situations and can be rapidly deployed to support UNHCR and partner UN organisations dealing with emergencies elsewhere around the world.

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