A newly renovated school has been reopened in Kamyanske, Dnipropetrovsk oblast in eastern Ukraine today, as part of the European Investment Bank’s Ukraine Early Recovery Programme (UERP).

The school specialises in teaching foreign languages and has 61 teachers and 19 technical personnel working there in the current academic year. They are educating and nurturing a diverse group of students that includes children affected by the Chornobyl disaster, children with disabilities, and over 50 children that have been internally displaced by Russia’s war against the country.

The renovation project included the installation of thermal insulation on the building’s roof and façade and in its basement, the replacement of doors and windows with energy-saving ones, significant repairs to bathrooms, and interior finishing work. The improvements mean that the school can now welcome more students and is equipped to provide hybrid learning, facilitating education through both in-person and remote formats.

Additional improvements have made the school accessible and safe: ramps have been installed for easy access to the building, an IP video surveillance system has been installed, and critical utility networks — including electricity, water, sewage, ventilation and heating networks — have been upgraded. A computer network with server hardware has also been set up.

The total cost of the project was nearly €4.5 million, of which the EIB, the bank of the European Union, provided €3.63 million, and the rest was sourced from local funds. The project was implemented by the local authorities, and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Ukraine provided technical assistance.

In a statement for the opening of the newly renovated school, Deputy Prime Minister for Restoration of Ukraine and Minister for Communities, Territories, and Infrastructure Development Oleksandr Kubrakov underscored the importance of maintaining educational processes for children, even amidst the war. “In Ukraine, a staggering number of educational facilities have been impacted by war: at least 363 have been entirely devastated, with an additional 3,417 sustaining partial damage. Our mission is clear: 'We Build Ukraine' by reconstructing swiftly and better. This approach is also shared by our European partners at the European Commission and the European Investment Bank, who are dedicating funds to bolster recovery efforts in our communities.”

Ukrainian Minister of Finance Sergii Marchenko added: “Amid the war, we remain steadfast in advancing projects that tangibly improve lives throughout Ukraine. By renovating hospitals, schools and kindergartens, step-by-step we are helping to restore safe and comfortable conditions for people.”

Andriy Bilousov, Head of the Kamyanske City Council, also thanked the EIB and the European Union for their support. “We are delighted to be able to welcome children again in a new and improved school,” he said. “Kamyanske has accepted many internally displaced families with children, and we are responsible for ensuring decent and safe living and educational conditions for them. I am happy that the project is going ahead.”

EIB Vice-President Teresa Czerwińska, who is responsible for the bank's operations in Ukraine, said: “The brutal war has severely affected millions of Ukrainian children, necessitating immediate access to safe, inclusive education. Despite challenges, the EIB remains committed to local projects, such as the renovation of this school in Kamyanske, which we are opening today. This opening was also made possible thanks to the tireless efforts and dedication of our Ukrainian partners and construction workers. These kinds of investments secure Ukraine’s prosperous future within the European family by caring for its children today.”

Katarína Mathernová, EU Ambassador to Ukraine, said: “The ongoing Russian aggression has destroyed educational institutions in Ukraine, robbing Ukrainian children of their future. The renovation of Kamyanske school, funded by the EIB and the European Union, is yet another testament to the EU commitment to improving the learning environment for girls and boys in Ukraine. We invest in Ukraine’s future by helping restore what the war has taken away.”

Jaco Cilliers, UNDP Resident Representative in Ukraine, said that the Ukraine Early Recovery Programme has been an essential driver of the empowerment of Ukrainian communities.  “The renovation of this school is the result of the resilience and determination of the local community and great teamwork with Ukraine’s European partners. We’re happy to have contributed to this project, promoting inclusive education and ensuring a brighter future for the youth of Kamyanske,” Cilliers said.

Background information:

The renovation of Kamyanske school was carried out under the Ukraine Early Recovery Programme (UERP), a €200 million multi-sectoral framework loan from the European Investment Bank (EIB). By empowering local authorities to refurbish social infrastructure, the programme improves the living conditions of internally displaced people and their host communities. To date, around 100 subprojects have been completed, including 52 education buildings, 37 health facilities, and nine social housing blocks.

The Ministry for Communities, Territories and Infrastructure Development of Ukraine coordinates the programme together with the Ministry of Finance, while the reconstruction projects are fully managed by local government bodies.

UNDP in Ukraine provides technical assistance for the programme, ensuring the effective and efficient implementation of subprojects.