The UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR), with the support of the United Nations International Computing Centre (UNICC), has teamed up with ServiceNow, British Telecom (BT), and Thirdera to establish a regional contact centre (RCC) for refugees fleeing the ongoing war in Ukraine.
According to UNHCR, more than 8 million Ukrainian refugees were recorded across Europe by the end of February 2023, a year after the war began.
"Partnering with UNICC and the private sector has allowed us to launch this Regional Contact Centre, the first of its kind, enabling us to communicate with the people we serve, providing them with information, and referring those with vulnerabilities to the services they need," says Mohammed Ghafour, Community-based Protection Officer at UNHCR.
The RCC brings together the best of ServiceNow, BT, Thirdera, and UNICC's digital expertise and solutions to offer refugees a user-friendly, multilingual platform for accessing vital information on emergency services, assistance, and psychosocial counselling services.
The platform also provides information on education, employment, healthcare, housing, and legal support, giving a sense of normality to those in the direst of circumstances.
"We believe that our strength and depth on the ServiceNow platform and Customer Service Management solution will make for a fast implementation, allowing Ukrainian refugees to get access to the necessary support that they need in these difficult times," Rian Butcher, Senior Managing Director, EMEA, at Thirdera.
The cost-free phone calling system is now available in Hungary and Poland and can be scaled up to other countries in the region. The RCC is operated by teams based in nearby Poland and Hungary who speak both Ukrainian and Russian.
"One of ServiceNow's core values is that technology should be used as a force for good, so we wanted to help refugees get to safety as quickly as possible," added Nick Tzitzon, Chief Strategy and Corporate Affairs Officer at ServiceNow.
The RCC platform, a cost-effective, cloud-based solution, is built around a BT solution integrated with case management from Thirdera, using ServiceNow's Customer Service Management (CSM) application.
The solution is designed to be used in other situations. For example, it can be rapidly deployed to support UNHCR and partner UN organizations dealing with emergencies elsewhere around the world, making this a future-proof solution.
"We are proud to collaborate with ServiceNow, BT, and Thirdera to rapidly deploy and maintain an innovative platform that is being used to provide support to those affected by the war in Ukraine," concluded Sameer Chauhan, Director of UNICC.