If you are here to get some help with your Ukrainian, you have come to the right place! Learn how to ask for help in Ukrainian: useful expressions for different situations.

How to ask for help in Ukrainian

1. Допомагати

First things first: Ukrainian most helpful verb is допомагати to help. This is the one you must cry out in case of an emergency, for instance, if you see someone collapse on the street:

  • Допоможіть!
    Help!

In more relaxed situations, you can use допомагати in questions. Remember to use formal Ukrainian for ви and informal for ти.

  • Допоможеш? (informal)
  • Допоможете? (formal)                                                                                                                                                    Will you help?

This one-word question is the least formal. It is used in the case when the help is clearly necessary. For example, when trying to climb stairs with a baby pram or after you have told a story of your troubles:

  • Я переїжджаю, а в мене гора речей. Допоможеш?
    I’m moving out, but I have a pile of stuff. Will you help?

In the same situations, it is possible to go for imperative. In Ukrainian it sounds natural and polite enough, especially if used with будь ласка please:

  • Я нічого не встигаю! Допоможи мені!
    I have absolutely no time! Help me!                                                                                                                                                
  • Я не можу розібратися з цими інструкціями. Будь ласка, допоможіть.
    I can’t figure out these instructions. Please, help.
                                                                                                                
  • Ви можете мені допомогти
  • Ти можеш мені допомогти?
    Can you help me?

It is also possible to omit the subject: Можете / Можеш мені допомогти? This question is the most common and used in any social situation.

how to ask for help in Ukrainian

Dad, can you help me with the homework? – Sure thing. …Honey, can you help us with the homework? Photo credit

  • Ви не могли б мені допомогти, будь ласка?
  • Ти не міг би/могла б мені допомогти, будь ласка? (міг би is masculine, могла б is feminine)
    Could you help me, please?

This one is the most formal; you cannot omit any part of it. It is mostly used in workplace situations or with strangers. 

Now, you might add the objects (who and what) to specify what help you need. The structure is допомагати комусь (Dative case) з чимось (Instrumental case):

  • Допоможеш мені з вечерею?
    Will you help me with dinner?                                                                                                                                                  
  • Мою дружину звільнили. Чи не могли б Ви допомогти нам з кредитом?
    My wife has been fired. Could you help us out with the mortgage?

Another option is two verbs together допомагати (комусь) зробити:

  • Допоможіть мені знайти паспорт, будь ласка.
    Help me to find the passport, please.                                                                                                                                             
  • Можеш допомогти тут прибрати?
    Can you help to clean this place?
how to ask for help in Ukrainian

Help to find (it)! Photo credit

2. Виручати

Another useful verb is виручати to help (someone) out. When you are asking someone to give you a hand with something or to do something for you, виручати comes in handy. 

  • Виручиш?
    Will you help me out?                                                                                                                                                                      
  • Ти можеш мене виручити?
    Can you help me out?                                                                                                                                                                    
  • Ти не міг/могла б нас виручити?
    Could you help us out?

This is less formal, so you shouldn’t use it with Ви singular. However, it is appropriate if you are talking to two or more people (using ви plural):

  • Треба, щоб хтось посидів з нашою собакою. Ви могли б нас виручити?
    We need someone to babysit our dog. Could you help us out?                                                                                                      
  • Ми збираємо футбольну команду і нам бракує трьох гравців. Виручите нас?
    We are putting together a football team and we are three players short. Will you help us out?

ULP 2-56 | Порада | Asking for an advice + Accusative case in Ukrainian 

3. Робити послугу

There is another word which can be useful: послуга a favor. Usually, it is used for something big, some help that requires efforts:

  • Трамп заявив, що просив про послугу для США, а не для себе.
    Trump claims he asked for the favor for the US, not himself.

  • Можеш зробити мені послугу? Я написала резюме, треба, щоб хтось його вичитав.
    Can you do me a favor? I have written a CV and I need someone to proofread it.

Remember these collocations which are usually used with послуга:

зробити комусь послугу to do someone a favor

попросити когось про послугуto ask someone for a favor

  • Ви б могли зробити мені послугу і познайомити мене з ним?
    Could you do me a favor and introduce me to him?                                                                                                                         
  • Дмитро постійно просить про послуги, мені це вже набридло!
    Dmytro is always asking for favors, I’m tired of it! 

And last but not least, remember to thank people who offered their help. You can find out how to do it in this useful article.

How to give help in Ukrainian

Now when you know the basics of asking for help, let’s move on to giving it. In most cases it’s easy: 

  • Допоможеш мені це перекласти? – Так. / Добре. / Без питань.
    Will you help me to translate it? – Yes. / Okay. / No problem.

But imagine you are walking down the street and see someone looking lost. It is your chance to practice Ukrainian! Come to them and ask:

  • Вам допомогти?
    Do you need help?

Yes, it’s the verb допомагати again! It helps you to be nice. If the lost person says yes, you may be able to practice giving directions. If not, well, everything is fine 🙂 

When you are sure your assistance is necessary, just say this:

  • Давай(те) я допоможу.
    Let me help you. 

And then do whatever is needed.

how to ask for help in Ukrainian

Let me help you open up. Photo credit

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Ivanna Voitsekhovych

Hi! My name is Ivanka, I'm 27 and I'm a teacher based in Kyiv. My passions are reading and writing. When I get tired of words and letters, I go cycling or dancing with my friends.

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