The Virtual Parallel Event–Economic Empowerment of Women GBV Survivors: Success Stories from Ukraine–was hosted on March 23, 2022, from 1 PM – 3 PM ET at the NGO CSW66 Forum. The Commission on the Status of Women (CSW66) took place from March 14 to 25, 2022, representing a platform organized by the UN Commission on the Status of Women and provides civil society the opportunity to inform, engage and inspire grassroots efforts and advocacy needed to empower women and girls globally. The panel presented successful cases of social entrepreneurship and career support initiatives, including cases during wartime, launched and implemented in partnership with the United Nations Population Fund in Ukraine and funded by the UK Government.
The event moderator was Dr. Theresa P. Castillo, Chief Program Officer of HealthRight. Dr. Peter Navario, the Executive Director of HealthRight, Olga Revuk, the Deputy Minister of Social Policy of Ukraine, and Henia Dakkak, the UNFPA regional coordinator for GBV Response, gave informative opening remarks on this event. During the two-hour event, we also welcomed our panel speakers: Halyna Skipalska, HealthRight Ukraine Country Director; Uliana Dorosh, the Head of the charitable foundation Butterfly and the Founder of the social dressmaking and tailoring studio Butterfly; Vadym Chryptovych, the Head of the CSO Your Chance and the Founder of the social enterprise Greenhouses of Dobrepole; Maksym Peshkov, the Head of the charitable foundation CSO Synergy Hub and the Founder of social enterprise Adoro Café; and Svitlana Kalinina, the Сareer Сounselor at the Ukrainian Foundation for Public Health, Lviv.
All panel speakers presented us with novel perspectives and inspiring knowledge, engaging with the audience even in a virtual setting. Halyna Skipalska presented multiple case studies from Ukrainian CSOs – social entrepreneurs – on humanitarian and emergency support for women and children, responses to emergency humanitarian challenges, temporary shelter, career support, and first attempts at employment during the war. Uliana Dorosh talked about the humanitarian response of the social atelier Butterfly to the needs of women and children seeking shelter in Western Ukraine. Vadym Chryptovych illustrated the opportunities for employment and internships for women seeking shelter at the social greenhouse farm Dobrepole in Eastern Ukraine. Maksym Peshkov explained the transformation of the social enterprise Adoro Café in response to the humanitarian needs of Central Ukraine during the war. Lastly, Svitlana Kalinina presented the successful cases of emergency reorganization of the career hub: the experience of career counselors in organizing local coordination centers for temporary employment and shelters, and the organization of psychological support for women during the war.
“I think that social entrepreneurship has to believe in people 100%, and be able to teach people and to trust people,” said Maksym Peshkov. For organizations and enterprises, it is especially important to recognize and build equal spaces for both men and women, and to have trust in people.
To hear more about our stories of the Economic Empowerment of Women GBV Survivors, watch the full recording here.