Author: ekaterine

What can be done right now? Ukrainians unite to help servicemen and veterans

The human rights centre “Pryncyp” has joined the efforts and experience of Ukrainian serviceman and lawyer Masi Nayyem and human rights activist and volunteer Liubov Halan to help military personnel, veterans, and their families. Approaching the second anniversary of the full-scale Russian war against Ukraine, this is the story of organisations and activists who not only help to overcome daily challenges, but also engage in advocacy. “When I returned after being wounded, I lacked the necessary information” “One of the problems I faced when I returned after...

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Be one step ahead of a hacker: check simple cybersecurity tips!

In today’s interconnected world, our lives revolve around digital technologies. From online banking to remote work, social media connections to healthcare records, we entrust a vast amount of personal and sensitive information to the digital sphere. Imagine the Internet like a giant playground. It’s fun and full of cool stuff, but sometimes there are hidden dangers that we cannot see, like landmines. These dangers are called cybersecurity threats, and they can hurt our computers and steal our important information if we’re not careful. This brief guide will help you to spot the...

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A battle to preserve Ukraine’s cultural identity

Ivan Honchar was a famous Ukrainian artist. During his many field expeditions to Ukrainian villages in the 1950s, he gathered a large collection of ethnographic materials and works of folk art, which surpassed the collections of many museums of the time. In 1959, he opened the first private museum in Ukraine, based in his own house in Kyiv. Visited by intellectual dissidents and high-ranking foreign guests, it came under the eye of the totalitarian Soviet authorities, who often persecuted and harassed the museum’s visitors. The artist didn’t give up, and with the independence of Ukraine, the...

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Rhisoma Lab: the intercultural hub for creatives in Tbilisi

In the centre of Tbilisi, groups of creatives are solving real spatial problems with environmentally and socially sustainable approaches. Established through the support of the European Union, under the EU4Culture project, Rhisoma Lab offers its ever-evolving community of architects and designers the opportunity to defy hierarchical standards, offering rhizomatic project development processes, access to equipment, and creative networks for anyone who is interested. After arriving in Georgia, Belarusian architect George Zaborski said he found that “a lot of the so-called forced migrants...

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A chance for a better life: restoring justice for people with disabilities in Azerbaijan

Official records report over half a million people with disabilities living in Azerbaijan. However, the real figures are much higher. Often, people who are eligible for a disability pension face an unjust rejection or termination of their disability status. Finding a job is also a major challenge. The EU-funded project ‘Protecting human rights of vulnerable groups in Azerbaijan’, implemented by the OHCHR (the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights), provided a sub-grant to the ‘Law and Development’ Public Association (LDPA), which has stepped in to make a change. In...

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The power of skills: women paving the way to their own business in rural Armenia

Unlike large urban centres, rural areas in Armenia often lack jobs to offer to women, regardless of their age. The region of Shirak in the north-west of the country is one such case, where female unemployment rates remain high. This was the challenge addressed by ‘Lightning’, a local NGO, with a series of small but very concrete steps. Thanks to EU support, the NGO was able to help local women to get new professional and financial skills, which empowered them to self-employment. Diana MasuryanDiana is a nail dresser{"thumbSpacing":0,"captionHAlign":"bottom","collectionthumbHoverTitleTextBgColor":"rgba(0,0,0,0.07)","sliderMaxHeight":560,"sliderAdminWidth":840,"responsiveHeight":true,"collectionColumns":1,"sliderThumbsNavi":false,"galleryType":"pgc_sgb_slider","galleryId":"06635845","images":[{"id":287168,"title":"20231119_100642","url":"https://euneighbourseast.eu/wp-content/uploads/2024/01/20231119_100642-scaled.jpg","link":"https://euneighbourseast.eu/?attachment_id=287168","alt":"","description":"","caption":"Diana...

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Beyond the frontline

During the 2020 conflict with Azerbaijan, Armenia’s media landscape faced a challenging situation in which there was no systematic approach to crisis management. Medias responded based on their respective capacities and initiative, while individual journalists went to the frontlines reliant solely on their physical and psychological capacity to cope.  Acknowledging this gap, the Media Initiatives Centre (MIC), along with other media organisations, quickly established a rapid response group. “We realised that it was necessary to combine all the efforts and funds to support...

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How to act and move on: strategies for women facing discrimination and online harassment

The rise of online abuse, cyberbullying, and discrimination has become a pressing concern across the world, prompting the need for proactive strategies to create a safer digital environment for women. On the eve of Human Rights Day, we explore practical approaches that empower individuals to combat these issues and foster a culture of respect and inclusivity online. The battle for voice: concrete strategies “I received, for about two weeks straight, hundreds of tweets an hour dissecting my appearance in every way, making fun of the way I spoke, making fun of the way I looked,”...

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Gohar Petrosyan։ I want people to remain human and remain with love

When we visited the Gohar Petrosyan Art Centre in Hatsik village in the Skirak province of Armenia, Gohar was leading an art class with eleven-year-old Gayane. Gohar has hearing and speech problems, but due to her positive energy and her art, and with the help of family members or by writing, she can easily communicate with both visitors and pupils at her studio. The clay struck against the clay, there was a sound, and Gohar decided that the angels she had made should be bells. And everyone loved the bell-angels made by Gohar Petrosyan, a 38-year-old artist-ceramist, living in Hatsik village....

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‘Learning is not a process but a journey’: the example of a school in Orhei

Integrating young people with special educational needs (SEN) into society is a priority for the Orhei Vocational School, to ensure that they can find a job later. Over the past two years, the institution has adapted its curriculum in three professions – seamstress, forester and plasterer – to make it accessible, allowing more than 20 students with SEN to join the courses and learn a profession. At this school, learning is not just a process, but a journey carefully transformed to be accessible to children with SEN, who want to discover their passion in the world of trades. This is where...

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‘If we do nothing, nothing will happen. We have to bring Crimea back from the shadows’

On 24 February 2022, human rights lawyer Serghiy Zayets and his family became internally displaced persons (IDPs) for a second time as Russia launched its full-scale invasion of Ukraine. They immediately fled Irpin for Western Ukraine, where they still live today. Originally from Crimea, Zayets and his family had left the peninsula in 2014 following the Russian occupation. In this interview, Zayets speaks about his fight for the human rights of Ukrainian political prisoners in Russian custody, and the volatile nature of living and working in a war zone. After fleeing Sevastopol in 2014,...

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Developing STEM and educational innovation in a time of war

Obtaining a quality education in Ukraine has been a tough task for years. First, in 2020, the world was hit by the COVID-19 pandemic: smartphones and laptop screens had to replace the usual desks and textbooks in schools and universities, as Ukraine, like other countries, entered a period of lockdown and working from home. Two years later, Ukrainian education, which had not yet fully adapted to the dramatic technological changes brought about by the pandemic, faced the onslaught of the full-scale Russian invasion and war, which brought with it air raids, missile strikes, and blackouts.   Many...

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The rising star: supporting children with special needs during the war

Children are one of the most vulnerable social groups in peacetime, let alone wartime, constantly needing exceptional support. For children with learning disabilities in Ukraine, the challenges are even greater. Many are now displaced, living with their parents in unfamiliar places, often sharing space with other families. The Klein Child Development Centre is in the heart of Rivne in western Ukraine. For two years now, it has been operating under the Svitankova Zoria 777 NGO, which was founded by Olha Symonchuk in 2011. Children playing at “Klein” Centre. Photo: Artem...

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The key is to never give up: how Ukrainian women are building communities and trust in times of war

Across Ukraine, inspiring women and their NGOs have been creating new initiatives and adapting existing ones to support communities and people affected by the war. With the support of the EU4Dialogue project, funded by the European Union and implemented by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), Ukrainian women are building vital community initiatives and leading the forces for change. ‘A woman should not be afraid of difficulties’ Liudmila Ravliuk, 46-year-old leader of the NGO Together for Successful Business, stands as an example of commitment. Her organisation is setting...

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Bicycle Patrol 2.0: Strengthening safety and accessibility in Zaporizhzhia

Parks, squares, fountains, pedestrian areas – anywhere that is hard to reach by car – can be especially unsafe if there is no police bicycle patrol in the city. Zaporizhzhia may be one of Ukraine’s biggest industrial towns, but it is also known for its vast green recreation areas: the city’s Khortytsia Island alone covers 23.5 square kilometres. To make this vast area more accessible to police patrols, ‘Spilno Hub’, an NGO in Zaporizhzhia, is helping to develop the city’s bicycle infrastructure. Thanks to the support of the European Union and UNDP in Ukraine, in 2023, the organisation supplied...

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