Ukraine: Valentyna Dovzhenko

Never bill for your personal time, and strive to accomplish all you started.

— Valentyna Dovzhenko

Valentyna Dovzhenko (57) is actively engaged in public service work at national and international levels. Through governmental and non-governmental organizations, she focuses on developing strategies to resolve issues related to protecting the rights of women and children (UN Convention on the Rights of the Child), high risk groups (e.g. HIV/AIDS), poverty alleviation, violence and gender discrimination (UN Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women), and nonviolent conflict resolution.

Valentyna Dovzhenko works for the rights of women, families, and children in Ukraine and is involved in promoting nonviolent conflict resolution. She has worked in armed conflict areas in Peru and Columbia and participated in negotiations with terrorists during the hostage crisis in the Dubrovka Theatre Center in Moscow. She brought attention to the global and long-term impact of the Chernobyl accident, urging UN member countries to assist Ukraine in implementing a specialized program for the medical rehabilitation and social re-adjustment of children affected by the disaster. Thanks to Valentyna’s active involvement on the document’s final draft, a provision has been included substantiating the need to protect children from natural and anthropogenic (such as Chernobyl) disasters, as well as the necessity of paying special attention to the needs of children in countries with a transition economy. She has succeeded in involving the international community in solving the local problems that affect children and women. Valentyna headed the Ukrainian delegation to the 27th Special Session on Children of the UN General Assembly in New York, in May 2002. In her presentation she had the audience focus on a proposal concerning the reduction of global expenses on arms by ten percent in order to steer that volume of funds towards developmental efforts. She never gives up on the idea that the most complicated problems may have simple solutions; the only hard – though not impossible – thing, is just to find them.

All-Ukrainian Charity Foundation of Hope and Good Will Union of Ukrainian Women Women for the Future