On the 8th of March we typically celebrate the achievements and talents of women across the globe.
But 2023 is not a normal year. The 24th February marked the one year anniversary of Russia’s brutal and unlawful invasion of Ukraine — a year that has upended the lives of men, women and children across the entire country.
This year for International Women’s Day, we don’t want to talk, we want to listen. Our teammates Olga, Gloriia, Yuliia and Anastasiia’s lives have all been impacted by the war in Ukraine. Today, we’d like to invite you to read their stories of resilience, bravery and hard work in the face of unimaginable adversity.
Olga Snegur – Head of Talent Pool
I moved to Ukraine from Moldova in May of 2021 with the exciting task of spearheading the development of a new Amdaris office in Odesa. I instantly fell in love with the city — especially how close I was to the sea.
When I started there was nothing. I found the office, organised the renovation of the entire building and even hired the first employee. After months of love and hard work, we opened the Odesa office on 12th November 2021.
On the day the war began I was back in Moldova for a doctor’s appointment. My phone had been vibrating non-stop for the past few days, but everything changed when the ground began to shake as well. The explosions I felt were from a Moldovan military exercise, but they signalled the same thing as the very real explosions beginning in Ukraine. I knew nothing would be the same again.
From February until November of 2022 I continued to manage the Odesa office remotely before taking on a new position. It was difficult handing over responsibility of the Odesa office, but I knew that Gloriia would do an incredible job. I am now operating a digital centre, which has proven to be an interesting and exciting new challenge.
On International Women’s Day I will be celebrating my mother and grandmother and continue to contribute to balancing the scales in favour of a more gender-equal workplace.
Gloriia Gladkykh – Recruitment Team Lead
On the day of the invasion, I’d been working at Amdaris for a little over 5 months. When the bombs started dropping I was given the option by Amdaris to relocate to Romania or Moldova.
I decided to stay in Ukraine, a decision I shared with several of my colleagues. Even if I’d been pressured to leave I would have stayed, but Amdaris respected my decision. I stayed because I love my country and to remain close to help my family. Many of my co-workers left for Germany, Romania, Moldova and elsewhere, and I’m so happy that all of them were able to make the decision that was best for their personal situation.
In April 2022 I was able to start hiring again after a short hiatus. The number of employees working in Ukraine went from around ten to approximately fifty — in fact, both Yuliia and Anastasiia were hired after the war had started. Inside the country our situation remains dangerous and stressful, but we’ve all stuck together as a community. We even got the chance to celebrate the New Year together in Odesa.
I am now responsible for the people working with me in Ukraine. I deal with 7 or 8 issues a day that are directly related to the war — helping those with power outages, safety concerns around attending the office and much more. I’m proud to be building on the foundation that Amdaris created and doing my part for the future of my country.
This International Women’s Day I want to tell women around the globe to never be afraid to stick to their morals and convictions. We only have one life and there’s no point living it in fear.
Yuliia Skabytska – Software Developer
When the war began I was living and working in Kyiv. I was left without a job when the fighting and shelling spilled into my city and the company I’d been working for ceased operations.
Staying in the country was an obvious decision for me. It’s my home, where my family and friends are. I have always loved my country very much. After months of searching, I was offered a position at Amdaris as a Software Developer.
Work has helped me a lot. I’m thankful that I have an exciting project to work on and a wonderful team supporting me. When the war started I was constantly fearful during the heavy bombing of the city, but having consistent work and support helps me to not think about it. There are always things to worry about — how much gasoline we have in the car, our food and water supplies, whether we have electricity — but I am gradually learning how to live in the here and now. I am also incredibly grateful to Amdaris for the opportunity they offered me. Many people in my country are not able to work, so I am grateful for all the support they have provided me since I started.
It’s painful for me to think about, but on International Women’s Day I am thinking of the women who have lost husbands, brothers and fathers in the war and their bravery for persevering, helping the army and volunteering in the face of hardship.
Anastasiia Shavridina – Software Developer
At the start of the war, the battlefield was far enough away that I could feel comfortable remaining in Ukraine. Our city was under good protection, and I wanted to be close to my relatives.
I doubted my decision in the early days. I knew I couldn’t control the situation and after every missile attack I would question whether I’d made the right choice. It’s only been with time that I’ve come to understand how to recognise danger and protect myself in these situations.
Starting work with Amdaris in June 2022 helped by providing a much-needed distraction. Despite the continuation of missile strikes and sometimes having to live without power, I have come to realise how important it is to continue to live a normal life, support the economy, and demonstrate that we are not afraid. We will not be broken — we believe victory will come.
Women — like men — are involved at all levels of this war. For International Women’s Day I’m celebrating those who went to fight on the battlefield, saving human lives as a military doctor risking her own.
Thank you again to Olga, Gloriia, Yuliia and Anastasiia for sharing their unique stories. We hope you’ll join us in celebrating International Women’s Day and the achievements of the incredible women you know — in both your professional and personal lives.