Metinvest Group, in coordination with the Rinat Akhmetov Foundation, recently announced that its Saving Lives humanitarian aid project is joining forces with the Masha Foundation, founded by Ukrainian actress and television presenter Masha Efrosinina. She was made an honorary ambassador of the United Nations Population Fund in 2018.
Metinvest, owned by Rinat Akhmetov, will collaborate with the Masha Foundation on what has been dubbed the Unbreakable Mum project. As part of the project’s first phase, more than 140 female employees of Metinvest, their children, and women and children related to Metinvest employees who have lost their lives in the war against Russian aggressors, will undergo a specially designed program to aid their emotional recovery.
“The Unbreakable Mum project will be the first joint initiative of Metinvest’s Saving Lives humanitarian initiative and the Masha Foundation to rehabilitate women and children affected by the war,” says an announcement on the Metinvest Group website.
Metinvest Focusing on Mental Health
This is not the first Metinvest or Rinat Akhmetov project focused on mental and physical well-being during wartime. It has previously aided, and in most cases still is aiding, setting up rehabilitation and reintegration centers for internally displaced employees, purchasing medicine, providing critical food kits, and supplying the Ukrainian Armed Forces with military munitions.
The company was established in 2006 as a subsidiary of Rinat Akhmetov’s SCM Group and today controls more than 50% of the iron ore market, 46% of the baking coal market, and 40% of the metal products market in Ukraine. In 2021, the company topped Forbes‘ ranking of Ukraine’s largest private companies.
Since Metinvest Group and Rinat Akhmetov started the Saving Lives humanitarian initiative, its primary goal has been to help Ukrainian civilians overcome the hardship, pain, and the consequences of the war by involving partners and Metinvest’s businesses.
From the outbreak of war in February 2022, a number of Metinvest employees have found themselves at the forefront of resistance near the front lines, many in cities such as Mariupol and Avdiivka, which have been heavily damaged or destroyed due to Russian aggression. The group’s mission is to help those affected the worst.
Assisting Ukrainian Civilians
Metinvest says that the Saving Lives initiative will currently work on physically and psychologically helping civilians in regions where Metinvest’s businesses are located, with an emphasis on veterans, members of their families, women, and children.
The first focus of the initiative was a project that helped provide prosthetic limbs to war veterans. The second is the Unbreakable Mum project, which will concentrate on the mental well-being of group employees, their children, and connected civilians.
The project participants will be enrolled in a daily program divided into hourlong individual and group sessions involving psychotherapists, art therapy, and body therapy. In total, 24 psychologists are involved in the undertaking, which aims to prevent the development of post-traumatic stress disorder and stabilize the psycho-emotional state of participants by processing traumatic experiences, learning self-regulation methods, forming successful coping strategies, developing adaptive skills and self-awareness, creating new social ties, and increasing the social activity of participants.
According to the Masha Foundation, hundreds of applications are being received daily from women in need. Almost 60% of them have suffered through the occupation, and the rest survived blockades or were in terrible conditions in flash point sectors, with around 25% having witnessed violence.
Commenting on the project’s launch, Metinvest CEO Yuriy Ryzhenkov said: “Metinvest is a big family. The war has become a difficult test for our family since the aggressor’s shelling forced a large number of our employees to leave their hometowns. Unfortunately, among our family, there are more than 1,000 employees and their family members who were killed or wounded in the war.
“We have found Masha Efrosinina and her foundation to be an ideal and experienced partner. I hope that Unbreakable Mum is the first of many projects of the Saving Lives humanitarian initiative that will contribute to rehabilitating our employees, their families, and thousands of civilians from Ukrainian regions most affected by the war.”