Five private sector companies have signed a Cooperation Agreement with UNFPA to promote family-friendly working conditions for about 5,000 employees

26 April 2021

Five private sector companies have signed a Cooperation Agreement with the UN Population Fund (UNFPA Moldova) in order to implement family-friendly policies in the workplace for about 5,000 employees, of whom over 64% are young people aged 19-39. A flexible work schedule, fathers’ involvement in raising the child, health programs for employees, breastfeeding spaces and recreation rooms for children are just a few family-friendly practices in the workplace. 

This program, implemented in the Republic of Moldova, as well as in Albania and Kosovo, will facilitate the engagement of private sector companies in providing better conditions for employees and yield greater results for employers. For this purpose, UNFPA Moldova, with the support of the Austrian Development Agency (ADA), will guide and train private companies that are part of the project to implement family-friendly policies in the workplace. Using these best practices will allow employees to combine family and work life. The five companies operating in the Republic of Moldova that accepted the challenge are Orange Moldova S.A., S.C. Panilino SRL, Fidesco SRL, ICS Premier Energy Distribution SA, Asena Textil SRL. The activities are carried out in partnership with the Ministry of Health, Labour and Social Protection and the Chamber of Commerce and Industry. 

Gender-discriminatory stereotypes and rules hinder women's active participation in the labour market and social life and discourage men from becoming involved in childcare. Family-friendly policies adopted by governments and businesses in some countries have led to an increase in the number of women employed, more active participation of men in domestic and care tasks, as well as other benefits.

‘The pandemic has caused many challenges for employers, as well as for employees who have to combine remote work with childcare. We need long-term solutions to have more family-friendly policies, to create a more sustainable work environment. As part of the project, more than 5300 employees from 5 national and international companies will benefit from gender-responsive family policies in the workplace to support their employees by ensuring a balance between family and professional life,’ said Nigina Abaszada, UNFPA Moldova Resident Representative.

The Austrian Ambassador to Moldova H.E. Stella Avallone, also present at the event, reiterated the importance of gender balance for a prosperous society: ‘Gender equality and women's empowerment are essential conditions for poverty reduction, economic growth and social development. Inequalities in the labour market are fuelled by women's responsibilities for household chores, raising and educating children. These responsibilities should be shared equally with men, and the private sector has an important role to play in promoting these practices.’

In their turn, representatives of the five companies appreciated the possibility of being involved in the project and shared about the family-friendly policies they are already implementing or are going to implement in the near future.

‘We all spend a lot of time at work, which became the second home, which is why at Premier Energy Moldova we encourage the continuous development of our employees and promote balance between personal and professional life. The opportunities offered to employees directly influence their satisfaction and creativity and as a result the productivity and success of the business,’ said Jose Luis Gomez Pascual, country manager of Premier Energy Moldova.

The head of the Human Resources Department at Orange Moldova Elvira Neamtu listed the family-friendly benefits enjoyed by company’s employees, including flexible work schedules, special allowances for families with many children, extra days off to spend with the loved ones or advantageous mortgage conditions for young families. ‘These initiatives are appreciated by all employees and especially by parents who thus have the opportunity to devote enough time to their family. Family-friendly policies and practices bring a balance to employees' lives.’

‘The knowledge gained in this project will help us overcome gender stereotypes, cultivate the right family values, involve men in raising children and empower women. In addition to the flexible work schedules provided to employees, we strive to open a day care for company's employees. Having healthy, happy employees with a positive and efficient attitude helps us achieve good results within the company,’ believes Ludmila Sert, Executive Director at Asena Textil from Ceadir-Lunga.

‘We are confident that the family-friendly policies we intend to implement will bring joy to our employees and motivate them to be more involved and dedicated to their work, ultimately contributing to greater results for our company,’ said Veaceslav Pulber, Manager of Fidesco.

‘A satisfied employee will perform a more qualitative work, which will translate into a quality product or service. And a quality product means a satisfied customer. Therefore, we try to provide our employees with as many opportunities as possible to be able to reconcile family life with work,’ says Diana Dontu, Executive Director at Panilino. The company is also trying to identify solutions to open a daycare for employees' children.

You can watch the recorded event here.

Contact person: Diana Lungu, Communication Officer, UNFPA Moldova,

The ‘Expanding Choices: Gender-Responsive Family Policies for the Private Sector in the Western Balkans and Moldova’ Project is implemented by the UN Population Fund, with the support of the Austrian Development Agency, in partnership with the Ministry of Health, Labour and Social Protection and the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of the Republic of Moldova.