According to the latest figures from the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, around ten million people have now fled their homes in Ukraine because of the Russian invasion. In addition to the 3.5million who have left the country for neighbouring countries, an estimated 6.5million people are believed to be displaced within Ukraine.
Our team based in our Prague Technical Centre in the Czech Republic wanted to offer practical help by providing essential supplies and equipment for Ukrainians still in the war-torn country, and by alerting Ukrainians who have escaped to the Czech Republic, to current job vacancies for skilled roles with Ricardo.
Nada Rehakova who is HR Manager for Ricardo Prague said: “Our mental health specialist, Honza Drobný advised that he had been asked for material help by a colleague, Olha, who is from Chernihiv, a city in Ukraine about 120km north of the capital Kyiv. The city had been attacked early in the morning, and there was an immediate, urgent need for medical equipment and supplies like bandages, sterile dressings, disposable gloves and infusion kits. In addition, because women and children were sheltering in underground bomb shelters, Olha had asked for toys and games, nappies/diapers, personal hygiene and cleansing materials, plus bottles and formulation milk for babies.”
“Katerina Forstova, our Head of Language Coordination, took the initiative to organise a collection and asked people to bring in what they could. We were overwhelmed by the generous contributions we received: all the donated goods filled the whole conference room. Honza loaded up a van with the supplies and equipment and travelled to the Ukrainian border where he met Olha’s family and friends who were waiting for us and transported everything directly to the Chernihiv and Niživ hospitals and the shelters.”
Martin Hill, who is Vice President, Ricardo Prague said: “In addition, like many of our colleagues across Ricardo, we know that many members of the team have donated generously to charities such as the International Red Cross which are providing humanitarian aid to displaced Ukrainians.”
The Prague team is also actively supporting a Czech Republic Government initiative to promote company vacancies to Ukrainians who have sought sanctuary in the country. Nada explained: “The Czech Government has acted decisively to speed the process of obtaining visas and work permits for Ukrainian nationals, in essence granting free entrance to our country’s labour market so that refugees can start work immediately.”
“We have started to post all our open vacancies for the Prague Technical Centre on this free portal: https://www.jobaidukraine.com/jobs. We have a range of engineering and design capability vacancies currently open as well as a vacancy for a finance and banking professional and we are pleased to be able to promote these highly skilled roles to Ukrainians whom we have welcomed into our country.”
“We have been able to make an offer to a Ukrainian refugee who successfully interviewed for an engineering role with us. We have also been speaking to two other male candidates who are still in Ukraine. While they are not permitted to leave their country currently, we are keeping in touch with them and have advised that if their situation changes and they are able to come to the Czech Republic, they can contact us at any time to schedule the interview.”
“We encourage our Ricardo colleagues across mainland Europe and in the UK to promote the portal on their personal LinkedIn channels, as well, because we know that Ukrainians now based in Central and Eastern European countries are actively using social media to find meaningful employment. We just want to do our bit to help.”