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The COVID-19 pandemic, but also recent multiple crises, led to a series of changes and effects on the population, all of these reflecting on women and men differently, both economically and socially. This is also determined by the fact that women and men have different roles both in society and family.
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Yaroslav, 19, is a young man from Odessa who fled to the Republic of Moldova at the beginning of March 2022, together with his family. He is passionate about music, computers and accounting. The young musician has had an atypical development and multiple forms of disability, and the bombing and stress caused by the war has dramatically undermined his health. Before the war, thanks to therapy, Yaroslav was able to walk on his own, with a little help. Now, he uses a wheelchair again.
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Ana Grama is a young entrepreneur who transformed her passion for growing lavender into an eco cosmetics startup. Ana’s professional path started with the Pre-accelerator programme for women and girls implemented by XY Partners, with support from UN Women and funded by Sweden.
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Since the start of the war in Ukraine, Moldova and Poland have received the highest number of refugees. As of 22 April, about 91 thousand Ukrainian refugees are residing across the different regions of Moldova. UN Women has been working with partners to gather, analyse and disseminate data to illustrate the differential and disproportionate impacts of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine on women and girls.
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Svetlana Babaș, 19, is a Ukrainian Roma woman who had to flee her home as a result of Russia’s military invasion in Ukraine. She shares her story as a young mother who was worried about her fast approaching due date while escaping war and her journey to safety in a temporary placement center for refugees in central Moldova.
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Splashes of red, pink and yellow flowers dot the vibrant hues of green in a greenhouse and gift shop nestled in the village of Colibași, in the southwestern part of the Republic of Moldova. The owner is a girl with Down syndrome who had always dreamed of opening her own business.
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Millions of people have been fleeing their homes in Ukraine since the Russian invasion on 24 February 2022 turned into a full-fledged war. In Cahul, a border region in the south of the Republic of Moldova, local public authorities, volunteers and civil society are doing what they can to help, guide and host those on the move. 
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As of 22 March 2022, there were 97.057 refugees from Ukraine in Moldova, most being women and children. This is also the case of an extended family of 12 members of the Roma community who were forced to flee their homes in the village of Arbuzinka, Mykolaiv Oblast, Ukraine, to seek safety, protection, and assistance in the Republic of Moldova.
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More than 400,000 people from Ukraine have crossed into the Republic of Moldova since Russia’s invasion on 24 February. According to Moldova’s Bureau for Migration and Asylum, over 1,600 Ukrainians had requested asylum as of 10 March.
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On 24 February, Natalia, Irina and Cristina, three friends and mothers from Odessa, woke up to the sound of air raid sirens and explosions. Russia’s military offensive had begun. "Stress, danger and traffic jams, especially near military units... It was awful to see bags full of sand at checkpoints, tanks. I don't even remember the whole way to Moldova because I was very panicked," says Cristina, 41, who left Ukraine with her 18 and 3.5-year-old daughters. "After crossing the border, volunteers helped us with food and transportation. We are very grateful to the Moldovans,” says Cristina.
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Stefania Ciutac: „IT is the field where everyone can find their place”
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Photo: Stela Donțu/UN Women Moldova Raisa Buga is a teacher of geography and the principal of the lyceum Dimitrie Cantemir from Cornesti town, Ungheni district. Being a resident of Cornesti village, she has been working as a teacher for 32 years, always trying to promote gender equality in her community, educating several generations in the spirit of equality and mutual respect. The EVA project – Strengthened Gender Action in Cahul and Ungheni districts, funded by the European...
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Almost all over the world, agriculture is associated primarily with women. According to global reports by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), the majority of women from developing countries who are directly involved in the economic sphere are agricultural workers. But despite this, women face systemic gender-based obstacles that limit their opportunities to start their own businesses, putting them at a disadvantage compared to men.
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Alina Andronache, an activist and vlogger for gender equality, remembers what started her on the path to a life of activism. Although she was raised in a family where her parents believed in gender equality and gave her the same education as her brother, as Alina grew up she began to understand that society had a different point of view on the matter. “From a young age I noticed that there were many stereotypes regarding how boys and girls should look and how they should behave,”...
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Regardless of the social, political or health situation, notwithstanding quarantine, the social assistance system must be functional at any time. Social workers and assistants need to be able to fulfill their roles of supporting people in distress, visiting families and people with disabilities and helping all of them to cope with their varied obstacles.
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Valentina Rotari, 23, is pursuing a master’s degree in the Education and Culture department at “Alecu Russo” State University in Balti, a small town north of Moldova’s capital, Chisinau. At the end of May, for the first time, Rotari participated in public discussions on gender equality and women's rights, organized by UN Women in Moldova with financial support from the government of Sweden. We talked to her after the event about how her views about gender equality have...
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Svetlana Mantea is a local councillor and history teacher in Cobâlea, Șoldănești, a village of about 2000 inhabitants, located 120 kilometers north of Moldova`s capital, Chisinau. Feeling empowered, having participated in a UN Women-supported National Mentorship Programme for Women Councillors called  Inspir-o!,  Mantea was promoted to School Director. She soon started working with students, teachers and parents to challenge gender stereotypes in education, opening up new...
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Victor Zglavoci, chief police officer in Colibasi, Cahul. Photo: UN Women/Ramin Mazur Victor Zglavoci is the Chief of Police in Colibasi, a village about 100 Km south of Chisinau, the capital of Moldova, overseeing ten other villages in the region. Zglavoci takes pride in his work, and even with a lower staff capacity, he is convinced that each of his officers is dedicated to ensuring the safety of the community. “One night we received a distress call from the deputy chief of the...
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Olga Berdeu, 50, a woman with disabilities from Chisinau, the capital of Moldova "Being a woman with disabilities in Moldova is not easy. You should be a thousand times stronger than any other women, especially if you want to become a mother or if you want to get a job. On the other hand, you can’t rely only on personal strength either. It’s important to have self-confidence, necessary knowledge and financial independence. For 30 years, I was financially dependent on my...
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Just seeing how he opened the door and threw his boots up in the air, I knew how the rest of the night was going to be like. I hated everyone; I trusted no one. I tried to kill myself three times. My daughter Ana, who was in the third grade asked me, ‘do you think that we are going to be better off if you die?’