One hundred days of war in Ukraine

As the war in Ukraine passes the 100-day mark, IMS’ efforts of supporting independent public interest media inside the country and in the region continue unabated.

Despite severe logistical challenges and safety risks, many Ukrainian media outlets have continued operations since the invasion. One such example is Suspilne, Ukraine’s public broadcaster. Suspilne Media is the largest independent media company in Ukraine, with an audience of 13.3 million, and they have continued broadcasting since the Russian invasion began on 24 February. The TV station provides vital news and information to citizens. Their network also shares reports and eyewitness coverage with their counterparts in Europe, the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) Members.  

On 1 March, a TV tower in Kyiv was bombed and five people lost their lives. The TV tower was located less than 500 metres from the head office of Suspilne Media. Due to the risks of more shelling, the editorial team decided to relocate from Kyiv to a backup office in Lviv.  The team that moved to the backup office consisted of 126 people, and Suspilne urgently needed new equipment to organise broadcasting. IMS was able to purchase the equipment in Denmark (worth DKK 1 million) and deliver it safely to Lviv in March. 

In total, IMS’ support amounts to (as of June 3): 

  • Directly supporting 17 local public interest media organisations to ensure continuation of operations (four NGOs and 13 media outlets). 
  • Redistribution of funds from IMS partners as local micro-grants to over 35 local public interest media organisations. 
  • Five media development organisations received  support to provide emergency assistance to media workers in Ukraine 
  • IT equipment worth of DKK 1 million, safely delivered into Ukraine for the country’s public service broadcaster, Suspilne. 

IMS and partners are committed to promoting ethical, robust, gender-sensitive journalism, especially in wartime. All contracts with public interest media include a special provision to ensure professional journalism without discrimination or hate. 

Individual journalists and media workers have also received support: 

  • Through the DJ Safety Fund mechanism for individual journalists, a total of 14 journalists received direct support. Half of them are women. 
  • Personal protective equipment (PPE) such as helmets and bulletproof vests have also been distributed to Ukrainian journalists: 
    • 50 gas masks. 
    • 50 sets of body armour and 50 helmets in smaller sizes, mainly for women journalists.  
    • 25 sets of body armour and 25 helmets in larger sizes, mainly for men journalists.  
    • 100 Velcro “press” patches. 

Women and men need different sizes of protection gear. Wearing the wrong size may be life-threatening. That is why IMS have ensured that various sizes have been made available to reporters covering the war. 

Yulia Abibok, a Ukrainian journalist who received PPE, says:  

“I know that the IMS has approved issuing me a bulletproof vest, a helmet and a gas mask. I want to express to you my enormous gratitude for your support. My primary reason for leaving Ukraine was the lack of these things, which means inability to work in the country under the current conditions. I didn’t even have a chance to borrow them because no one had those in small sizes. You are giving me the very possibility to come back.”  

Learn more about how you can support Ukrainian journalists with your donation.