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As a result of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, hundreds of thousands of Ukrainians have fled to the Republic of Moldova, looking for a safe shelter. Amid this unprecedented crisis, the Government of the Republic of Moldova, international community, civil society organizations and many volunteers have joined efforts to respond promptly and efficiently to the needs of Ukrainian people. Those involved face many challenges, including maintaining psychological balance. For this reason, many psychologists and psychoterapists have started organizing mental health sessions. One of these specialists is Elena Biceva, President of the Moldovan Association of Gestalt Therapy and Psychodrama, who organizes mental health sessions for public servants involved in refugee crisis response. She explains the role of psychological counselling in crisis situations, as well as how to prevent emotional burnout.
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As a consequence of the Russian Federation’s invasion of Ukraine, the lives of millions of people changed overnight. Many Ukrainians were forced to leave their homes, being internally displaced or fleeing to neighbouring countries in search of safe shelter. Refugees had to leave behind their loved ones, as well as give up jobs, hobbies, and other things that their lives were made of.
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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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As a part of continuous efforts for contributing to improving resilience of the most vulnerable groups against multiple crises, especially against the COVID-19 pandemic and its aftermaths, UN Women initiated, at the end of 2021, the „Increasing the access of vulnerable women to food and essential supplies” project, in collaboration with the Ministry of Labour and Social Protection, financed by the Embassy Office of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in the Republic of Moldova.
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Women from Boscana commune, together with women refugees from Ukraine, have organised a cultural activity to get to know each other better and exchange traditions and customs, at the initiative of the Congress of Local Authorities from Moldova (CALM), with support from UN Women and financial contribution from Sweden. It was the first time when women refugees accommodated in the commune managed to meet one another, share information, concerns and contacts. Boscana inhabitants also had the opportunity to become acquainted with women refugees who have been living in their commune for over two months.
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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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The General Inspectorate of Border Police of MIA received a donation of 60 wheelchair and 40 walkers for people with reduced mobility or elderly people. The mobility equipment has been donated by UN Women Moldova with financial support from Sweden.
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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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They are determined and know that they can influence the political life in their hometowns or the villages where they live. We’re speaking about four participants in the Civic and Political Capacity Building Program for women with disabilities who decided to run in local elections in 2019.
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About 30 members of civil society organizations, representing 20 organizations from 9 districts of Moldova, created the Platform for Gender Responsive Budgeting (GRB) to work together in monitoring and promoting gender responsive budgeting.
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The way how public budget is allocated and spent affects both women and men. How can the budget reflect equally the needs of women and men? How can the local budget cover the most important issues of the community? These are some of the topics discussed in an interview with Marija Risteska, Gender Responsive Budgeting (GRB) expert.
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UN Women Moldova invites civil society organizations working in Moldova to participate in the first training program on Gender Budget Watchdog Reporting.