Ukrainian Entrepreneurs’ Year-Long Journey in Georgia

Germany, UNDP, and CARE Caucasus Empower Refugee Businesses Strengthening Economic Resilience and Justice

May 31, 2024
Photo: UNDP Georgia/Giorgi Shengelia
Photo: UNDP Georgia/Giorgi Shengelia

Thirty-nine refugee entrepreneurs, primarily from Ukraine, established businesses in Georgia with the support of the German Government, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), and CARE Caucasus. This support, which includes funding, consultancy, and technical assistance, is part of the broader Germany-funded project 'Improving the Rule of Law and Access to Justice for All'.

Operating in major cities like Tbilisi and Batumi, and small villages, these dynamic small enterprises span diverse sectors from hospitality and technology to services, trade, and crafts. They support refugee families who sought shelter in Georgia during the war, create sustainable employment for more than 80 people, and contribute to Georgia’s economy.

Over 70 percent of these vibrant new businesses are led by women, highlighting the importance of promoting economic justice and women's rights in building resilient and sustainable economies.

On 31 May, the refugee entrepreneurs gathered in Tbilisi to celebrate the successes of their entrepreneurial journey in Georgia, discuss challenges, and plan the future.

Anna Chernyshova, UNDP Deputy Resident Representative in Georgia; Sarah Zielonka, the First Secretary and Head of Economic and Press Affairs at the Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany to Georgia; and Ketevan Khachidze, CARE Caucasus CEO, addressed the participants and guests of the event underscoring tangible results and broader implications of the initiative.

"Two years into the war in Ukraine, supporting Ukrainian refugees, especially women entrepreneurs, is one of our key priorities. This initiative showcases the resilience of the human spirit and the power of friendship and cooperation in the face of challenges."
Anna Chernyshova, UNDP Deputy Resident Representative in Georgia
"Germany is proud to support the refugee entrepreneurs in Georgia, whose efforts help rebuild lives disrupted by the war. We salute their courage, resilience and innovative spirit leading to success in the hardest times."
Sarah Zielonka, First Secretary and Head of Economic and Press Affairs at the Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany.
“Over the past two years, CARE Caucasus has led the way to a better life for Ukrainian women and children in Georgia, through cash assistance, legal aid, employment support, and entrepreneurship development. For many, income from these enterprises is their only financial lifeline. Our joint efforts are helping them rebuild their lives with dignity.”
Ketevan Khachidze, CARE Caucasus CEO
Background Information:

The support provided to the refugee entrepreneurs in Georgia is part of the ‘Improving the Rule of Law and Access to Justice for All’ initiative, funded by the German Government and implemented by UNDP. Through this US$1.62 million project, UNDP and Germany enhance the capacities of Georgia’s rule of law institutions and promote legal empowerment and socio-economic resilience among disadvantaged communities.

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