Ukraine: Lyubomira Boychishin

My goals are to raise public awareness and attention to the problems of disabled people, to attain equal rights for all citizens of my country.

— Lyubomira Boychishin

Lyubomira Boychishin (born 1952) established the Information and Rehabilitation Center for Disabled Women “Lyubomira.” She herself is disabled and in a wheelchair. Since 1998, the center has carried out projects with organizations for disabled women in Ukraine. It is financed by non-governmental donors. As a result of this work, an information network was founded to link organizations for disabled women across Ukraine. Lyubomira is actively raising awareness of society about the problems of women with disabilities and supporting them to become active members of society.

Lyubomira was born in Lvov, Ukraine. A professional civil engineer, she has used a wheelchair since 1990. Since 1989, she has been an active member of the Union of Ukrainian Women and the People’s Rukh of Ukraine. The idea of creating a center for disabled women came to Lyubomira's mind after her participation at the NGO Forum at the World Conference on Women in Beijing in 1995 where she met with 200 women in wheelchairs from all over the world, who are all living full lives. In 1997, she established the Information and Rehabilitation Center for Disabled Women "Lyubomira," and since 1998 she has been the editor-in-chief of a magazine for disabled people with the same name. Since 1998, the Lyubomira Center has implemented seven projects, supported by funds from international donors. The trainings and seminars organized by the Lyubomira Center have enabled many women with disabilities to become active as full citizens of their country. This success gives Lyubomira energy and strength to continue her work. The Lyubomira Center developed an information network linking organizations of disabled women in the cities of Kiev, Lvov, Zhytomyr, and Sevastopol through a project supported by the Canadian-Ukrainian Gender Fund. “Our organization sees its peaceful future in the light of the agreement on cooperation, signed by the President of Ukraine,” she says. As a non-profit organization, the Lyubomira Center constantly has to find sources of financing. Not everybody in society understands the problems of people with disabilities. Many people just ignore them. “Our goals are to raise awareness and attention to our problems,” Lyubomira says. For this she receives support from international organizations and plays an active role in several non-governmental and governmental organizations in Ukraine.

Information and Rehabilitation Center for Disabled Women “Lyubomira” Union of Ukrainian Women People’s Rukh of Ukraine