Conclusions of the Svidomi: we survived

Conclusions of the Svidomi: we survived

Our main conclusion for 2022, like all Ukrainians, is that we survived!

Even 10 months ago, we could not have imagined that we would be able to sum up the year and share our achievements with you. The date of February 24, 2022, divided our reality into "before" and "after." Although 2022 turned out to be the most difficult year, we can still recall positive moments and successes.

We ended 2021 with the Conclusions that we hold annually, where the head of the Come Back Alive foundation Taras Chmut said: "We need to prepare for a war." Throughout January and February, we wrote about what was happening in the east, but we did not believe in a full-scale war — on February 20, our team met for the first time for a strategic session.

On February 24, around 7 a.m., in the work chat, the editorial staff was waiting for an answer to one question — what are we doing? CEO Nastia Bakulina replied: "We are working." Thus began the February shift that changed everything in the work of the media. The "5 news" format has ended — the 24/7 news feed has begun. The design changed from interesting illustrations to black and white, and the news began to be published one every five minutes. The editorial staff don't remember most of the moments from the first two months of the full-scale war: there was always news and work.

Then Svidomi enlisted the support of volunteers — about 50 people worked in shifts so that Ukrainians knew what was happening, how to act in different circumstances, and what Zelenskyy was saying.

Now Svidomi is 165,000 Instagram followers and 16 people on the team.

We launched two podcasts: "This Rain Will Last A Long Time" together with Andrii Rymaruk, the military department head of the Come Back Alive foundation, and "Evacuation Of The Wounded From The Battlefield" together with Hospitaller Iryna Tsybukh, call sign "Cheka."

We received support from the European Endowment for Democracy (EED), Lviv Media Forum, Prague Civil Society Center, and USAID.

The English-language version was launched on February 23, because it sees its separate task as debunking myths about Ukraine and combating Russian narratives among foreigners. More than 53,000 people currently read news about Ukraine in English.

In 2022, our network of partnerships has expanded. We started working with state institutions: the Ukrainian Institute, the Representation of the President of Ukraine in the Autonomous Republic of Crimea, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and the Diia Digital Education portal. We worked with other media —, LUK, Detector Media, SLUH, Hromadske Radio, and Radio Treba. We created dozens of materials on documenting war crimes with the "Russia Killed Them" initiative from the ABO agency, the Media Initiative for Human Rights, and Vostok-SOS. We wrote useful materials with advice together with our friends from Inscience and the Ukrainian Volunteer Service. We told the world about Ukraine together with the War in UA project by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. We analyzed current events through a historical retrospective with the National Museum of the Holodomor-Genocide and the "Local History" media. We also supported Kyiv Critics' Week, Molodvizh, and Digital Education Week, and talked about the films "Klondike" and "Mariupolis." These are not all of our partnerships, because this year we had 56 collaborations.

In addition, we launched a commercial direction. We started from scratch: we created a media kit, consulted with colleagues, studied at Lviv Media Forum training — and in six months, we created 10 commercial collaborations.

During this year, we also made 165,000 friends — our followers — who help us make the media better. It is the followers who allow us to work and destroy Russian narratives in the English-speaking world. For you, we look for the Internet during blackouts.

We are not going to stop developing!

We will publish unique analytics, interviews, stories, and reports about Ukraine every day.

There are plans for new collaborations, platforms, and languages. More and better thanks to your support!