Belarusians continue to endure persecution and repression of the illegitimate authorities and fight them. They often have to leave the country and turn to organizations abroad for protection. We could not get past the troubles of our compatriots. «Our House» continues to summarize the results of last year. We are talking now about the deeds in various fields. Today we will remember how «Our House» defended women last year.
In January 2021, a video was released on our YouTube channel on a significant topic – about underage girl prisoners and motherhood in the colony. In it, Olga Karach told about how little prisoners of Lukashenka live, how much money they receive in prison for their work, whether they have the opportunity to study. Olga Karach also told about the lies of the Minister of Internal Affairs, who promises amnesty to young prisoners for good grades.
By International Women’s Day on March 8, 2021, several materials about women were published on our website. Olga Karach took part in the «March of Flowers» in Vilnius, «Our House» expressed solidarity with Belarus Woman’s Foundation and the project «I am a political prisoner», and also united several protest leaders to congratulate women. Also, in March, «Our House» relaunched the campaign for gender equality. We have prepared an overview of political prisoners of women in Belarus. We also raised the topic of girls sitting under Article 328 of the Criminal Code. Olga Karach spoke at the regional meeting of the platform «Women, Peace, Security», where she told about the repressions in Belarus. The heroes of our publications were Olga Zolotar, a political prisoner with many children, and Olga Kalatskaya, a translator, who hit the propagandist Azarenok.
In April 2021, Olga Karach discussed women’s issues at a meeting with Thomas Vytautas Raskevicius, head of the Lithuanian Parliamentary Committee on Human Rights. Olga Karach spoke about gender-motivated repressions against women in Belarus and their difference from the repressions used against men. In the same month, we wrote about the political prisoner nurse Yulia Kasheverova, about the teacher with many years of experience, Alexandra Shestakova, about Yulia Mikhailova, whose family was detained after a walk under a white umbrella.
In the summer, we did not forget about Belarusian women. We provide them with various support. In June 2021, we talked about what professions are prohibited for Belarusian women, about what repressions the state uses to combat active women. The story of Elena Movshuk, a political prisoner with many children, got published on our website. In July 2021, Olga Karach reminded Belarusians about the wives of political prisoners who are often left alone with their children. They need to provide for themselves and the child, pay for an apartment and at the same time collect parcels to prison, pay for visits in custody, pay for a lawyer. In the video, Olga Karach asked to help such families. This month, «Our House» spoke about the violation of women’s rights in correctional colony No. 4. And we also made a whole material about brave women from all over the world who fought for their rights in different historical periods. In August 2021, the ICCI «Our House» called on all women to stand up for Ksenia Lutskina, a journalist who suffered from a tumour in her head in jail. Ksenia Lutskina was not released together with other employees of the Press Club Belarus, as she refused to sign a petition for clemency in a fabricated case.
In September 2021, we combined the names of all Belarusian political prisoners into one large text. Unfortunately, since then, this list has been replenished with new surnames. The article about the violation of women’s rights in Belarus was published in the «Defence and Solidarity» section. And in the voice chat, we invited Veronika Mishchenko, a member of the praesidium of the «Narodnaya Gramada» party, one of Mikalai Statkevich’s closest associates. She told about the origins of the women’s revolution in Belarus. A video about Belarusian women—animal defenders appeared on the «NASH DOM TV» YouTube channel.
In October 2021, three articles about women appeared on our website. We talked about sexual slavery in Belarus, where both ordinary Belarusians and model girls, winners of beauty contests get to. In addition, we paid attention to the activists of the movement «Mothers-328», whom the state has repeatedly persecuted because they fought for their children. Finally, we talked about Ukraine’s struggle for gender equality. Olga Karach also released a video in which she spoke about the situation in Homel, where a mother threw a newborn baby into the cesspool of a public toilet. According to Olga Karach, this child is also a victim of the Lukashenka regime because there is no support for mothers in the country.
In November 2021, we released eight materials on the problems of Belarusian women. On our website, the topic of domestic violence was touched upon, in which five materials were published. We also once again highlighted the problem of women in places of detention. In November, we raised the issue of state interference in the reproductive rights of Belarusian women and the sexual life of girls and women. And, of course, we did not pass by the closure of multiple women’s organizations in Belarus, writing about the liquidation of public associations helping victims of domestic violence and numerous women’s clubs.
In December 2021, we started food and material support for Belarusians abroad. Thanks to the efforts of Olga Karach, two trucks with humanitarian aid from Germany arrived in Lithuania, some of which went to Poland and Lithuania. This help included necessities, bed linen, hygiene supplies, clothes, dishes and shoes for women and children.
We paid for 27 food parcels for Polish women with children. We also sent products to several families in Lithuania, Latvia and Ukraine.
Why do we keep writing about women? Unfortunately, Belarusian women continue to be imprisoned and repressed, threatened with terrible things: rape, removal of children and harming loved ones. Belarusians are scared not so much for themselves. They are afraid that their children will get into the orphanage. That’s why they are fleeing the country to save them. And various obstacles are waiting for them abroad: search for work, housing, food and clothing, legalization. And they need help: both material and psychological. While the situation remains tense, we will talk about women and help them.