The war in Ukraine continues to be of immense concern. We are an international University with a deep commitment to social responsibility and democratic values. We strongly condemn any acts of aggression and specifically the attack on Ukraine being carried out by the Russian government and armed forces. Our thoughts are with all Ukrainian citizens and colleagues, especially those who have lost loved ones in this humanitarian disaster.
As an inclusive community, we have come together to respond to need in a number of ways, from student-led vigils and fund-raising activities through to the deployment of relevant academic expertise and the provision of institutional humanitarian support. As part of a large-scale twinning initiative supported by Universities UK (UUK) and the Ukrainian Ministry of Education, Durham University has been matched with Zaporizhzhia National University (ZNU).
The safety and wellbeing of our staff and students is paramount, and we are committed to supporting all staff and students who are impacted by the war. We continue to provide to our current students affected by the conflict, and we are developing ways of helping those whose education may have been disrupted by this and other conflict situations. Alongside our support for continuing students, we will also be offering Sanctuary Studentships, on a recurring annual basis, to support students displaced by conflict.
Our work with the Council for At-Risk Academics (CARA) fellowships continues and we have taken the decision to commit to funding for additional fellowships on an ongoing basis, taking the number of CARA fellowships we offer to six per annum.
We continue to work closely with our local authority Durham County Council. We have joined their Humanitarian Steering Group. We are working to provide interpreting, translation and other linguistic support in Ukrainian, Polish and Russian. Along with DCC and the UK Government’s Department for Work and Pensions, we are exploring the possibility of offering individuals from conflict-affected countries opportunities to apply for employment with us.
We have registered for the Government’s ‘Homes for Ukraine’ scheme, which provides accommodation for those who have been displaced, for an agreed period. We are working with Durham County Council to house people who have been displaced in identified University accommodation.
In line with the UK Government, our major funders and the higher education sector more generally, we have reviewed our research collaborations with institutions and other entities in Russia and Belarus. Durham University is suspending all bilateral research collaborations with organisations in these countries. No new research collaborations with Russia or Belarus will be initiated while Russia continues its aggression against Ukraine.
We express our support and respect to all those affected by this war, both within our University community and beyond, regardless of nationality.