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“Swedish Dads” at the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine: the world-famous exhibition on responsible fatherhood is opened

18 November 2019

November 18, 2019, KYIV - After being shown at the Parliament of Ukraine, a series of portraits by Swedish photographer Johan Bävman “Swedish Dads” (#SwedishDads) opened at the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine. This is a series of portraits of men with children, aimed at drawing attention to the problems of modern fatherhood.

The exhibition is organized by the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), the Embassy of Sweden in Ukraine in cooperation with the Swedish Institute.

“In 1974, Sweden became the first country in the world to implement childcare leave not only for the mother but for both parents. The purpose of the exhibition by renowned Swedish photographer Johan Bävman is to show the positive effect of the equal sharing of mother’s and father’s child-caring roles at both personal and societal levels. In particular, it is a great pleasure to see Ukrainian dads joining the project,” says Hilma Dahlström, Second Secretary, Swedish Embassy in Ukraine.

“Unfortunately, due to societal attitudes, the level of interest of men in formal childcare leave until the child reaches 3 years of age is very low. In particular, less than half of men are aware that they already have such a right under current law,” said Nataliia Koshovska, Program Analyst at the United Nations Population Fund.

Why did Swedish dads decide to take paternity leave and take care of children and how did it affect their relationship within the family? This is what Johan Bävman explores using his photographs which depict the everyday situations faced by a father with a child.

The exhibition also includes 7 portraits of well-known Ukrainian men raising children along with mothers. These are the families of the frontman of the Antibody group Taras Topolia, the Chairman of the National Securities and Stock Market Commission Tymur Khromaiev, FC Shakhtar football player Taras Stepanenko, Head of EdCamp Ukraine Oleksandr Elkin. Members of Parliament Volodymyr Ariev (European Solidarity party), Volodymyr Tsabal (Voice party) and Sviatoslav Yurash (Servant of the People party) also joined the project.

The exhibition hosted by the Ukrainian Parliament will last until December 5, 2019.