Vitalie, 37 years old, participated with his family at the opening of the photo exhibition on 24 April. Photo: Laura Bohantova

Because we believe that fathers should be actively involved in raising and educating children and that it is natural to a man to take paternity and child care leave, we supported the photo exhibition "Moldovan and Swedish Dads", which was opened in Chisinau at the initiative of the Swedish Embassy in the Republic of Moldova, in partnership with the United Nations in the Republic of Moldova. The exhibition took place between 17 - 30 April 2018.

In total, portraits of 25 fathers from Sweden and 10 from the Republic of Moldova were captured in pictures. The 10 local winners were selected by open competition, where they had to post a picture of taking care of their child and a brief reflection on the role of father. All in all, 64 applications were received.

“This exhibition is an opportunity to stimulate discussion about the role of dads, in the family and in society as whole”, said Signe Burgstaller, Ambassador of Sweden to the Republic of Moldova. “We hope that fathers will feel proud of the important work they do in the family and will be inspired to think about family life and their parental contributions more after this exhibition”.

The "Moldovan and Swedish Dads" Photo Exhibition was launched on 18 April 2018 at MallDova shopping center. Photo: Laura Bohantova

"I am delighted of this photo exhibition, which illustrates families’ harmony in which both parents are equally involved and devoted to daily care of children. This should be a norm in the 21st century and in the era of the Agenda 2030 and the 17 Sustainable Development Goals. It is very important for girls and boys to have an emotional connection with both parents," said Dafina Gercheva, UN Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative in the Republic of Moldova.                                   

Andrei Dontu, Artist-instrumentalist, 35 years old. "Together with Andrei, Theodor and Sebastian, I learned half of all that I know now; I found new feelings and conditions of which I did not know before they were born. With them I grew up and changed! I hope to be a good example for my boys, and also their best friend."
Tudor Ceban, Developer, blogger, 33 years old. "I am a lucky father, I work from home, respectively, I know very well what it means to stay home with a child. In the framework of the Modern Father project, I would like to encourage as many fathers as possible to participate more actively in the education of their children and, in particular, to convince them that the most effective method of educating children is by own example."
Tudor Mereacre. Specialist in Public Relations and Project implementation, 32 years old. "Education, love, care and wisdom should be provided by both - mother and father! Everything is divided into two! Only in this way the child grows up balanced and confident that she or he will receive support from both parents! There is no responsibility of the mother and father, there is the responsibility of the Parent."

The exhibition aimed to stimulate discussions on equality in the family and its effects on society, as well on men's and women's options on family life and work.

In Moldova, working mothers are entitled to 100% of the paid salary for 70 days before and for 56 days after the child’s birth. Fathers are entitled to 14 days at the child’s birth and 100% of their salary. After maternity leave’s expiry, insured parents are entitled to part-time paid childcare allowance that can be fully or partially used until the child reaches the age of 3 years old, with the benefits accounting to 30% of the salary. Unemployed but married women are entitled to maternity leave with calculated benefits from theirs husband's salary.

Mihail Pislaras, Border Service Officer, 32 years old. "I prefer not to help, but to be a partner in everything related to the life of a parent, home and family. A modern father is not the head of the family but he goes hand in hand with the mother, to search, explore, inform himself, make decisions and act TOGETHER. And not least, a modern father is the one who does not hesitate to show his love to his children and his wife.”
Vitalie Burlaca, Operator mechanic, 37 years old. "For 15 years we waited for the moment when Marusika would be born. She gives me the opportunity to fully enjoy my role as a father, to be happy with every spoon I feed her, with love to change diapers, to be happy for each of her success. We are a family that equally enjoys the fact that we are parents."

The Law nr. 71, which provided for the first time for a 14 days paternity leave, paid from the social insurance fund, was adopted in April 2016. More and more fathers choose to take leave to take care of their children. When it comes to beneficiaries of the parental allowance leave for childcare, only 1 in 10 are men, the rest being women. 

UNDP, alongside other United Nations agencies, has partnered with civil society organizations in advocacy for the adoption of this law. UNDP supported the Government of Moldova in developing the National Strategy on Ensuring Equality between women and men (2017-2021), and will continue to support gender mainstreaming and women’s empowerment across key development areas in the country.

Eugen Smicov, Engineer, 30 years old. "My name is Eugen and I am the father of two daughters. With them, I returned to childhood, and I feel responsible for their spiritual development. Recently I realized that my imagination is enough for more children! Now I spend a lot of time with my four children, two of which are our friends’. My main concern now is to come up with a new game for children, and this project can be a game for them!".
Vladimir Bolocan, Pharmacist, 30 years old. "I want to be the father that I dreamed of being since a child, because I say every day to people that raising a child is a miracle, but we, I don’t know why, we are looking for miracles somewhere else. I want to say this to everyone, and therefore I am glad of the opportunity given to me."

According to the Study on time use, conducted by the National Bureau of Statistics with UN 's support, 6 out of 10 women are daily engaged in childcare activities in comparison with only 4 out of 10 men.

That is why joint efforts are needed to achieve an effective gender equality and a fair sharing of family responsibilities.

Victor Turcan, Developer, 31 years old. "The father should offer to his family confidence, emotional and physical support, and, last but not least, all his love. A modern father does not share duties in the family based on gender, but takes them upon himself, only so a family will grow up strong and ready for the future."
Petru Negura, University lecturer, 43 years old. "If men were serious about their role as a father, then everyone would benefit: both mother and children, and especially the father himself. Not only because you can teach children different things, but also because you can learn something essential from your own children."

One of the targets of the Sustainable Development Goal Nr 5 is to reduce unpaid work.

The Agenda 2030 represents an opportunity for Moldova to switch from institutional and regulatory development to actual elimination of phenomena like gender-based discrimination and prevention of violence against women and girls so that their effect on the gender inequality in the country is minimized and women’s rights are fully realized. Moldova’s women and men need an equitable approach in social insurance policies, in social protection and health care, accompanied by relevant infrastructures and services. They should enjoy equal treatment regarding labour and payment, distribution of unpaid domestic and care work, access to and delivery of goods and services, and social security.  

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