Kvinna till Kvinna in Ukraine

In 1991, Ukraine became independent from the Soviet Union. The years that followed saw the development of the country’s civil society, and a women’s movement taking root. Since the Maidan events and the start of armed conflict in 2014, civil society has played an increasingly important role in Ukraine. Today, numerous active women’s rights groups work in the country.

Why we work in Ukraine

Ukraine has made significant formal commitments to gender equality – from adopting the SDGs to ratifying treaties such as CEDAW. The country’s constitution also includes gender equality provisions.

But women’s rights are far from fully respected in Ukraine today. Conservative attitudes and stereotypes are deeply rooted in society. Rule of law is inadequate and gender-based violence widespread. Women are underrepresented in political and civic processes. As the political will to address these issues is lacking, gender equality remains a long way off.

Since 2014, armed conflict has also made matters worse in Ukraine.

Militarisation has exacerbated discrimination and made gender stereotypes more influential. Violence has become normalised, creating direct challenges for women’s safety. Many face high levels of conflict-related stress and trauma.

On top of that, women have been almost entirely excluded from formal attempts to initiate a peace process for the country, despite some efforts at public dialogue.

Supporting women in Ukraine

Together with our future partner organisations in Ukraine, we aim to:

  • strengthen the Ukrainian women’s movement
  • support community-level peacebuilding efforts
  • increase women’s participation in formal and community-based peacebuilding
  • prevent gender-based violence and support victims
  • advocate for the ratification and implementation of the Istanbul Convention
  • strengthen equality- and women’s rights-related legislation
  • lobby for the implementation of UNSC resolution 1325 and related resolutions
  • strengthen women’s political participation

of Ukraine's 1,6 million Internally Displaced Persons are women
0in 5
Ukrainian women have experienced sexual or physical violence, reports the UN
of seats in Ukraine's parliament are held by men, as of 2017

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