13 Oct 2020

2 min

Local Economic Development

International Mayors Summit and Lady Di Atelier launch a capsule scarf collection to support kids with Down syndrome and autism

The International Mayors Summit and the first Ukrainian inclusive atelier Lady Di Atelier joined efforts to launch a capsule silk scarf collection entitled “Breaking down barriers is easy. Together!” Each item’s print is a drawing made by children with Down syndrome (called “sunny kids” in Ukraine) as part of art therapy classes at the Sunny Workshop operated by Lady Di Atelier.

The project aims to sell 1,000 scarves and highlight inclusivity through art and fashion, as well as to fit out the Sunny Workshop in Lviv.

All proceeds will be allotted to equip the art therapy center Sunny Workshop with all the necessary amenities for children with Down syndrome and autism.

“A healthy person can hardly imagine – even for a second – that the stairs for someone stand like a small Everest or a baffle that prevents them from reaching their usual workplace, museum, or public institutions. The much-hyped digitalization today still does not provide the visually impaired with access to a number of websites and applications, and not everyone can hear talking traffic lights or car horns. And not everyone is born healthy, some kids have Down syndrome. The city is a public environment, a comfortable, convenient, safe, barrier-free place. At least, it should be. However, the reality is strikingly different: inclusivity is more of a buzzword than a real embodiment of a decent coexistence,” says Iryna Ozymok, founder of the International Mayors Summit. “We want to change it and make the concept of inclusivity a value, a philosophy of the modern Ukrainian city, not just a tactical ramp placement.”

As part of the collaboration, five types and three sizes of silk scarves were designed. There are even models for men. You can order the one you like via the official @lady_di_atelier Instagram account.

Sunny Workshop was established on June 1, 2020, in Lviv by the Lady Di Atelier volunteer team. In June, after having rented the premises and purchased the supplies (easels, paints, canvases, etc.), the team initiated 50 free art therapies for kids with Down syndrome and autism. The estimates for the first pilot month show workshop costs to exceed UAH 40,000 plus the team resources, which include artists and psychologists. The sale of about 70 Lady Di Atelier scarves covers one month of the Sunny Workshop activity. Currently, the workshop is attended by 30 children, and the demand for such art therapy is growing. To ensure further comfortable operation of the workshop, now it is necessary to rent a bigger space, as well as increase the staffing with another child psychologist, speech therapist, and artist.


About the International Mayors Summit:

International Mayors Summit, launched in 2016 by Western NIS Enterprise Fund as a knowledge exchange platform for local government leaders, eventually became “more than a conference”. Now it’s a platform of urban development, a place where projects and partnerships are born. The Summit brings together prominent mayors from throughout the world, the business community, international organizations representatives and civil society to discuss solutions, innovations, best international and local practices of city governance, and share various success stories of Ukrainian cities. The Summit is more than a conference. This is where projects are born.

About Lady Di Atelier:

Lady Di Atelier is the first Ukrainian inclusive atelier to become a place where a disabled person can work, bring to life their talent, and make progress. The atelier designs and sells silk handkerchiefs. The Lady Di was established in 2019 and is now more than an impactful business. It is a platform where many concerned people come together and where inclusion-focused public events are held. The Lady Di employs 13 workers, and about 40 families have brought their kids to art therapy by now. The atelier’s intense activity and efficiency inspired more than 50 famous women to tell about the brand and support it. The client list includes such incredible women as Masha Yefrosynina, Onuka, Iryna Danylevska and many others.

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