The report Fleeing Ukraine: Displaced people’s experiences in the EU presents the results of a survey conducted with over 14,500 refugees who fled Ukraine after the Russian invasion. 

The European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA) conducted the survey in 10 European countries (Hungary, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, Bulgaria, Czechia, Germany, Italy, Spain and Estonia) in August and September of 2022. The survey report presents an analysis of the refugees’ experiences on many issues, such as arriving in the host country, housing, education, work, income and social support as well as health and wellbeing.

The survey results on refugees’ access to education show that less than half (43%) of the respondents who were in education shortly before leaving Ukraine have continued it in their host country (remotely in a Ukrainian school or on site in the host country). Some of the main reasons for not participating in education was its completion and not knowing the host country’s language. Among the respondents living in Poland, other important reasons included the need to care for children or an older person, lack of time or computer equipment. The share of refugee children who continued their education (remotely or on site) was much higher and reached 92% for 12–15 year olds and 73% for 16–17 year olds. The majority (71%) of children who attended schools in their host country were not taught any subject in the language they mainly spoke at home. The surveyed children also indicated the lack of quiet or private space for learning.

Two-thirds of the respondents were not employed during the time of their studies; among the persons living in Poland, 42% of the women and 54% of the men were employed. Unfortunately, almost half of the employed respondents were working in jobs below their qualifications and the share of such persons was higher for women than men (51% and 39% respectively). According to the respondents, the main barriers impeding their employment were the lack of knowledge of the host country language, the need to look after a dependent person (a child or an older person) and advanced age. Among the refugees who found employment, around one-third reported to have experienced exploitation in the workplace, such as having to work long hours, being underpaid or not paid for the work performed or working without a contract.

More detailed results and analyses are available in the report at the FRA website.