No child should be left alone with the trauma of war. This is our mission.
- With your help, we provide psychological and psychosocial support to children who suffered as a result of war operations.
- We also help families to cope with everyday difficulties, treatment and rehabilitation of children, providing them with addressed support.
- To give children a voice we create video content, and we are also engaged in promoting children’s rights in order to change the children’s rights protection system in the country.
Our goal is to create conditions when every child will be heard and children’s rights will be protected.
- We respect the dignity and rights of a child.
- Every Ukrainian child is a child of the war, but everyone perceives it in their own way. It is important to listen to all children and teach them to keep control of what is happening, so that they do not depend on help.
- We believe that the best results in overcoming children’s trauma can be achieved with the help of professionals.
- By involving parents in this process, we prevent family conflicts and problems.
- We are for the future where children are not victims of war, but free and happy citizens.
- We work together with children and for children.
History of the Foundation
Emergence of the Voices of Children Charitable Foundation, with its many initiatives and a large team, was unplanned, but absolutely logical if you look at the stories of its co-founders.
From the very beginning of the russia’s armed aggression against Ukraine in 2014, Olena Rozvadovska spent a lot of time in Donbas, providing humanitarian aid to local residents, convincing them to evacuate and looking for opportunities to rehabilitate injured children.
Olena worked with people directly, spending her own reserves and organizing fundraising to help children. Later, international initiatives began to contact her because they needed help in writing reports from the scene of events and consulting on the needs for which charitable funds should be directed.
Azad Safarov was a documentary filmmaker who traveled to the east of Ukraine to make a film about the war. There he met Olena, and they joined working on the film “A House Made of Splinters” about children from a destroyed orphanage, whose destinies changed within an instant.
Azad and Olena wanted not only to spread the word about the war in Ukraine and abroad, but also to collect targeted aid for these children. Therefore, the creation of a Foundation in 2019 became an urgent need. This is how the story of the Voices of Children began.
At that time, Olena had acquaintances in almost every front-line settlement and many friends among the like-minded activists, so it was not too late to unite with them.
When you are a single volunteer, you are just a single volunteer, you have two arms, two legs, one car and one salary from which you can allocate funds for assistance. And when people join you, you become a team and can become a greater force.
The Voices of Children became this force. A driving force is the idea that children of war need to have a safe, carefree and happy childhood.
Since then, our organization has focused on providing psychological support to children who suffered from hostilities and experienced traumatic events in the east of Ukraine. We provided individual and group psychological sessions, conducted art therapy classes in the front-line areas, organized the work of mobile psychologists for children in boarding schools in the Donetsk and Luhansk regions.
With the beginning of the full-scale russian invasion of Ukraine, we had to scale up our work very quickly in order to be able to work for children not only in the East, but also throughout the country. The work of the Voices of Children team in the first three months of this war can be described as an emergency response, because we were engaged in operational crisis counseling for families with children who needed it the most. Often these were children who hid from shelling for a long time, survived a difficult evacuation from hot spots, or were injured. The main task of our psychologists was to bring these children and their parents out of the state of shock and with the help of routine meetings to guarantee them psychological stability and safety. We also provided humanitarian aid and evacuated families from the East, where combat was the fiercest.
Later, it became clear to us that activities of the Foundation should be expanded, and it should become more systematic. After all, overcoming the consequences of the war is a long way that we will follow for many years.
That is why we are now focused on creating ongoing programs of assistance that cover different needs and formats. It is about:
- provision of psychosocial support and rehabilitation for children and families;
- meeting additional educational and recreational needs of children;
- children’s rights advocacy;
- assistance with evacuation and ensuring children’s access to a safe environment in communities;
- arrangement of new permanent or temporary housing for IDPs and meeting their basic needs.
The key task of the Foundation is to help a child maintain control over what is happening in his/her life and not depend on help all the time. Our priority is to provide long-term comprehensive psychological support to a child, fully understand his/her needs and work on the prevention of PTSD or coping with consequences of the war.