From 11 May to 24 May 2022, 27 participants from Armenia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Netherlands, Romania, Russia and Switzerland took part in the Summer School “War, Gender and Precarity” in Chișinău and in Molovata in Moldova. During the first week, the participants dealt with topics such as precarity in today’s societies in general, precarity in academia and the development of precarious jobs. The lectures were accompanied by group discussions and presentations and the participants exchanged a lot about their own – very often precarious – situations. Another important topic was how Russia’s war in Ukraine is described in Western media and to which extend gender-based violence is treated. After this lecture, one participant said: “It’s difficult to enjoy the good atmosphere here when we hear about the war in Ukraine. The war is everywhere, we can’t hide from it. It helps that we are together and can talk about it openly.”

During the second week in Molovata on Dniestr, the participants learned more about the situation of Moldova and how workers in agriculture who come to the EU for seasonal work increase the precarity in their home villages. The Moldovan economy depends to a big extent on the economic performance of Moldovan citizens abroad. But agricultural workers work under very precarious circumstances without social security. So, when they fall sick, they have to go back to Moldova without receiving any compensation – neither for the work they can’t perform anymore nor for the recovery.  

The war in Ukraine was omnipresent during the summer school. During a workshop on how to overcome traumas, the participants learned how to better deal with the situation. Every day, a trainer organised morning exercises to strengthen resilience. One of the organisers said at the end of the summer school: “It was important to bring the people together and to give them the opportunity to talk openly about the war and how they feel.” For the participants it is very clear that the war has to stop immediately, the Russian troops have to withdraw and Ukraine has to regain its integrity.