Ukraine - Russia: advice and support

Advice and support for students and staff.

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Russia has invaded Ukraine. The situation is serious and travel to the region is not advised.

If you are a University of Sheffield student and you are currently studying abroad in Ukraine or Russia, please contact our Global Engagement Team as soon as possible via globalopps@sheffield.ac.uk. If you are a member of staff, please contact your department.

The Ukraine Crisis: Experts give their views

Our academics are providing expert comment and insight to the conclift in Ukraine.

Read more


Latest updates

Last updated: 24 March 2022


Message from the Vice-Chancellor

23 March 2022

Thank you to everyone who has written or spoken to me to share thoughts and ideas regarding our response to the Russian invasion of Ukraine. I am writing to you with an update on the steps we have taken so far and our plans for the coming months.

Our first priority is our current students and staff who have been impacted by the awful events in Ukraine. Our Welfare and Wellbeing Team in Student Support Services has made contact with all students from Ukraine, Russia and neighbouring countries to offer direct support. A number of students have told us that they are shocked and distressed about recent events and some are experiencing financial difficulties as a direct result of the war. These students are being fast-tracked for both wellbeing and financial support. If you are aware of students in your department who may need additional support, please contact Student Support Services via email: support@sheffield.ac.uk

We have asked managers across the University to check on the welfare of colleagues from Ukraine and Russia. We are also mindful of the anxiety that all staff may be feeling at this time. Our staff wellbeing hub includes resources that may be helpful, and we also ask managers to raise any specific needs with the HR manager for their faculty or department:
https://staff.sheffield.ac.uk/health-wellbeing
https://staff.sheffield.ac.uk/hr/teams/business-partnering

We will also do what we can to help students and scholars fleeing the war in Ukraine. The University Executive Board has identified £1 million of funding to be used towards a package of support for those affected. This package will include new scholarships for students who are transferring from a Ukrainian university or who are due to begin their studies this autumn. The new scholarships will build on our existing support schemes for those escaping conflict and persecution, including our asylum seeker scholarships. Once confirmed, we will share information via our main scholarships web pages: https://www.sheffield.ac.uk/funding

These funds will also be used to support students and scholars experiencing financial hardship, and will offer opportunities for displaced academics. Since I last wrote to you, a team from the University and Students' Union has formed a University of Sanctuary Ukraine subgroup to coordinate our response. This group has been in contact with local refugee groups, national organisations and the Council for At-Risk Academics (CARA). As you may be aware, we have previously worked with CARA to welcome academics fleeing war in Syria and other countries. Our English Language Teaching Centre (ELTC) has also offered its support in responding to this crisis. As well as offering English language training to our scholarship recipients and other students, the ELTC can help to train volunteers who are supporting refugees in our wider Sheffield community.

A number of you have asked what you can personally do to support those affected by the war in Ukraine. We will be keeping our Ukraine web pages up to date with links to appeals for support and information sent to us by leading aid agencies. You may have seen that the government has launched a scheme called Homes for Ukraine that asks individuals and organisations to register interest in becoming a sponsor for those fleeing Ukraine. The University is in touch with government departments about this scheme, and we will keep you updated as it progresses.

In my last update I also mentioned our response to the sanctions against the Russian government. The University has a contract with gas company Gazprom UK, which is a subsidiary of the Russian-owned Gazprom. We do not intend to renew our contract with Gazprom UK and we are investigating options around changing our supplier before our current contract ends in 2025. Through our work on sustainability, we are exploring how we can reduce our reliance on fossil fuels, including natural gas.

Finally, I want to say thank you for the way in which you have responded to this conflict here at Sheffield. Many of our academics have been in touch with our media team to offer important analysis of the issues surrounding Ukraine and Russia and have been featured in the media. Many more of you have offered support to colleagues, students and affected community members, and you have shown Sheffield's true community spirit during times of crisis.

I will continue to update you on our response to the war in Ukraine and we will also share information via our Ukraine web pages at: www.sheffield.ac.uk/incidents/ukraine-russia

Professor Koen Lamberts
Vice-Chancellor


University gas supply

10 March 2022

The University has been working closely with others to identify and review any actions we can take to support the ongoing sanctions against the Russian government. We do not intend to renew our contract with Gazprom UK and we are also looking at options around switching our energy supplier before our current contract ends.


Latest update from Universities UK

8 March 2022

Read the statement from Universities UK


Message from the Vice-Chancellor

3 March 2022

The University Executive Board (UEB) members have discussed the shocking events in Ukraine and the global reaction to the Russian invasion.

Our thoughts are firmly with everyone affected by what is happening in Ukraine. We know that many in our University community are concerned about the situation and I want to let you know about some of the steps that the University is taking to support our students, our staff and the wider community in Sheffield and beyond.

We have been in contact with all students and staff who were in the region and offered to support their return to Sheffield. If you know of any members of our community still in Ukraine, Russia or Belarus who have not been in touch with the University, please speak to your head of department as soon as possible.

Support for our students and staff at this time is our main priority. Our Welfare and Wellbeing team in Student Support Services has directly contacted all our Ukrainian students to offer support. I have also asked heads of departments to check in with students and staff and to direct those who are worried to the support we have available via the student support and staff wellbeing hubs:

Sheffield has a proud history of welcoming people who have had to leave their homes because of wars and humanitarian disasters. The University is a member of the Council for At-Risk Academics (CARA) and we have begun work to look at opportunities we may be able to offer to scholars and students who are fleeing Ukraine, Russia, Belarus and other affected countries. We have also been in contact with our local and regional partners to discuss South Yorkshire's response to the current crisis and to find out what coordinated activities are planned to support those experiencing the devastations of war.

Some of you have asked us how you can donate to help people in Ukraine and neighbouring countries. The UK government has told us that they will match donations up to £20 million that are given via the Disasters Emergency Committee appeal. The Disasters Emergency Committee brings together 15 leading humanitarian charities who can coordinate support in times of crisis. We will be adding links to the DEC appeal to our incident page along with other suggestions of ways that you can offer support.

Disasters Emergency Committee appeal

You can donate on the Disasters Emergency Committee appeal website.

At times of global crisis it is critical that people have access to high quality, independent and truthful expertise and analysis. I know that some members  of our academic community have research interests and experience in areas related to Ukraine, Russia, peace and conflict, and have been sharing their commentary via the media. I encourage those of you who are able to share your expertise in these areas to do so. You can contact our media team if you would like support in this.

I also want to let you know that UEB is working closely with the Russell Group, Universities UK, the Department for Education, the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy and others to identify and review any actions we can take to support the ongoing sanctions against the Russian government. We will remain in close contact with national agencies around this and will keep you updated.

Finally, I would like to thank you all for the support you have shown each other at this time. Sheffield has a remarkable community of staff and students who always come together to offer help to others in times of need.

If you have any further thoughts about how the University can respond to the events in Ukraine, please contact me via vc@sheffield.ac.uk.

Professor Koen Lamberts
Vice-Chancellor


Travel advice

Ukraine

The UK Government’s Foreign, Commonwealth, and Development Office (FCDO) advises against all travel to Ukraine. British nationals are advised to register their presence  with the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO) as soon as possible to follow the advice of the Ukrainian authorities while remaining in Ukraine.

For the latest travel advice, please visit the FCDO web page for Ukraine.

Russia

The UK Government’s Foreign, Commonwealth, and Development Office (FCDO) advises against all travel to Russia.

If you are a student currently studying in Russia you will be contacted directly by the Global Engagement Team. If you are a member of staff currently in Russia, please contact your department.

For the latest travel advice, please visit the FCDO webpage for Russia.


Support

We understand that the current situation may be distressing to members of our University community, particularly those with family and friends in Ukraine and Russia. Our support services are here to offer wellbeing and practical advice.

Support for students

Student support services are available to all students who may be affected by the ongoing situation. A University login is required to access the pages below.

Support for staff

The staff wellbeing hub offers a range of support for staff, including confidential counselling and guidance. A staff login is required to view the hub.

Peace Vigil

The University's Chaplaincy Centre has set up a daily Peace Vigil, which takes place every day Monday to Friday for up to 30 minutes at 12.30pm in the Octagon (L7 Gathering Room).