First Lady of Ukraine Olena Zelenska became the honored guest of the Forum of the First Ladies and the Wives of the Heads of Government of the Commonwealth Caribbean (Spouses of CARICOM Leaders Action Network, SCLAN, headed by wife of the Prime Minister of Belize Rossana Maria Briceño). Olena Zelenska proposed joint projects to the participants within the Kyiv Summit of First Ladies and Gentlemen.
In an online speech, she expressed her condolences over the natural disasters, including Hurricane Lisa, which caused widespread destruction in the Caribbean region. The First Lady noted that Ukrainians also know what it is like to be left without housing and communications, yet not because of natural disasters, but because of the Russian invasion.
“But different cataclysms – war or natural disaster – have something in common. They throw the country back in development, bringing survival to the foreground instead. In such conditions, the role of the first lady is much more than just the role of the President’s wife. My experience says: we as first ladies can do a lot for the well-being of people in our countries, especially if we join forces,” Olena Zelenska emphasized.
She invited her colleagues to join the international community initiated by her – the Kyiv Summit of First Ladies and Gentlemen. The second Summit, entitled “Ukraine and the world: the future we (re)build together” despite the war, took place in the Ukrainian capital on July 23. It was devoted to the post-war reconstruction of the country.
“This is not only our war. It affected and affects the whole world. Unfortunately, you feel it in your region as well. Yes, the war waged by Russia against Ukraine provoked a food crisis. The aggressor’s blockade of Ukrainian seaports endangered the food security of millions of people in various countries in Asia, Africa, and Latin America. But it is important not to confuse causes and effects. If Russia had not carried out its invasion attack, this would not have happened. By attacking Ukraine, it challenged the whole world. That’s why we need joint actions,” Olena Zelenska commented.
She said that by the decision of the participants of the summit, it is turning into a platform that will operate constantly for the implementation of joint projects at any time, and called on colleagues to participate.
“Already at the end of winter, I am planning to start preparing for the next event, which will take place in the summer of 2023. In today’s world, everything is very close and borders are more fragile than they seem, because we live in common processes. Therefore, we are stronger only together,” the First Lady summed up.