Olga in Sophia

Olga Lavrinovich from the Cornelius Society (Tokmok, Kyrgyzstan) visited the Institute for Social Integration (Sophia, Bulgaria) in late August. There, she worked with her counterpart, Lazarina Boneva, on their joint research and activism project that addresses issues of gender and citizenship rights.

The Bulgarian iteration of the work had the title We Are for Social Policy. It was a seminar for women and girls on the outskirts of the city who are often marginalized in civic life. While participating the in seminar, Olga gained hands-on experience in holding events for informal education. She led a meeting with women in the city of Buzhurishche about the role of women in modern Kyrgyz society. Olga presented the work of her home organization, and shared information about election procedures based on her past role as a candidate for parliament in Kyrgyzstan.


The visit was gave Olga new ideas about how to enhance her work at home, using the achievements of Bulgarian civil society as a model. She saw many parallels between the two countries, politically and culturally. On a personal note, Olga was grateful for the opportunity to experience the sincere hospitality of Lazarina’s family, and build a lasting friendship with her twinned partner.

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