The availability of the housing program for internally displaced people in Ukraine: barriers and facilitators



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The purpose of this thesis is to research a housing program for internally displaced per-sons (IDPs) in Ukraine and identify factors hindering its successful implementation (suc-cess in this thesis is defined as high rates of participation). Housing policy is important to be researched because it has a crucial influence on the ability of IDPs to adapt to a new community. Access to adequate and affordable housing is the first step in their pro-cess of resettlement and integration. The Affordable Housing Program (AHP) of Ukraine was designed according to the pref-erences of IDPs and provided them with funding for housing purchase since 2017, but the program lacked participants. To find out why, there was, firstly, a detailed analysis of program design and its’ requirements conducted. After that, 24 Ukrainian IDPs were interviewed including AHP participants and the control group of other IDPs. The re-search supported the hypotheses of the thesis and concluded that the main factors con-tributing to hindering the program are (hypothesis 1) administrative issues with the pro-cedure (the most important of them being the long waiting queue for the assistance) and (hypothesis 2) the high financial requirements of the program, which were difficult to be met by participants. Two other hypotheses of the research were not supported. The first one stated that the IDPs do not participate in AHP because of the lack of knowledge about the program, when in actuality they were well-informed about assistance programs. The other stated that IDPs have no need of private ownership of housing, but the interviewees expressed an aspiration to purchase housing. Despite those aspirations, IDPs were rather limited in their financial abilities to purchase housing, even with AHP assistance. Thus, it was concluded that the state should provide displaced people with different kinds of programs helping not only with purchase, but also giving options of affordable temporary accommodation. Otherwise, the general in-tegration of IDPs into a new community (as well as their employment, political partici-pation, getting healthcare, education and other services) will be hindered by the absence of such a primary need as housing.