My name is Margarita, and to my right is my sister Vera. We created a family business 7 years ago in Kharkiv – it is a children’s textile workshop “Happy Spaces” with our own illustrations created by Vera. And two years ago, we moved our business to Kyiv. I have been living in Ireland for almost 6 years and manage my business remotely, and the thousands of kilometers that separate the countries have never felt so short, and the Irish and Ukrainians have never felt so united.
When the war started, we let all the employees go so that they could leave the city. For 48 days, while the workshop was closed, we supported each of them, regardless of where they were. And I am very proud of each of them, because they all helped the country in their field, in their place: they sewed body armor, knitted camouflage nets, promoted charitable projects.
I also started volunteering in Ireland from the first week of the war. Together with the volunteer organization Ukrainian Action, the charitable organization Flights for Freedom and with the support of Irish logistics business, we have already transported almost 1,000 people from the hard-hit regions, including illegally deported people from Mariupol, to Ireland.
It has been two months since our team partially returned to Kyiv and we resumed work. Of course, for the Ukrainian consumer, our products are no longer relevant. And in the international market, where we worked before the start of the war, sales also fell, because people are worried about ordering products from a country where the war is going on. But we are very grateful for what we have. It helps us pay taxes, salaries and support the families of our employees.
We at “Happy Spaces” are ready to ship our products all over the world. Every order is important to keep the business alive.