Sofia Petriv is a law student, ecological activist, and founder of Flora by Petriv, a non-profit organization dedicated to environmental activities. The organization aims to help restore the ecosystem of Ukraine and cultivate an eco-culture and respectful attitude towards nature.
Since its inception, Flora by Petriv has made a significant impact and has become popular, especially with young Ukrainians. The organization’s target audience is conscious and concerned citizens and schoolchildren.
Flora by Petriv plans to expand its activities in the coming years, and grow into a large-scale eco-movement throughout Ukraine by implementing various ambitious projects.
The Beginning of Great Things
Sofia Petriv, a Lviv State University of Internal Affairs law student, launched Flora by Petriv. Petriv was first inspired to get involved in eco-activism when she participated in an evocative education course called, Democracy: From Theory to Practice.
The International Foundation for Electoral Systems (IFES) presented the course with United States Agency for International Development (USAID) support. IFES is an organization that’s active in helping Ukraine build powerful institutional practices based on democratic principles. USAID is an independent United States federal government agency active in providing development assistance and civilian foreign aid.
Thousands of Ukrainian students at more than 60 educational institutions have completed this course while learning new skills through various hands-on activities. The course taught students the fundamental concepts of democracy, including government systems, civic participation, human rights, and the true meaning of democratic citizenship. It also helped Sofia Petriv realize the depth of her commitment to the environment.
View this post on Instagram
Motivated by what she had learned in the course and the required knowledge and skills to create and execute an eco-focused student project, Sofia began working with fellow students. Together they regularly arrange ecological activities such as forest clean-ups and tree-planting events throughout the Lviv region of Ukraine.
She also became a spokesperson for climate change. She frequently visits local schools to speak with younger students about environmental matters and to raise awareness of the impact of climate change and teach others how they can do their part to help minimize their carbon footprint.
Launching Flora by Petriv
Sofia Petriv launched Flora by Petriv in April 2022 and officially registered her business in May 2023. Soon after the launch, the organization signed a partnership agreement with Lviv Forestry. Flora by Petriv’s first major project was the OOL project, which is currently ongoing, and involves forest greening and cleaning.
Here are some of the organization’s most significant projects:
The National Stage of the All-Ukrainian Forum of Interaction and Development
Taking part in the All-Ukrainian Forum of Interaction and Development – National Stage, Flora by Petriv representatives spoke about their ecological activities. This event also allowed them to network with like-minded organizations and set up potential collaborations for future projects.
Planting Forests Together
In March 2023, Flora by Petriv created “the Planting Forests Together” project. This initiative is focused on the reforestation of Ukraine.
Civic Education: Formation of Conscious Youth of Lviv Oblast
In May 2023, Flora by Petriv attended this important event, which was part of the USAID Dream and Act program.
The Leadership Academy
Flora by Petriv attended the leadership academy, a joint initiative by the NGOs Center for Initiative Youth and Let’s Do It Ukraine, along with the youth group, Youth of Lviv Region.
Collaborating With The IFES
The IFES organization invited Flora by Petriv to attend a working visit in Kyiv, where they met with IFES President Tony Banbury and IFES Regional Director for Europe and Asia (E&E) Anya Cumberland.
On June 13, 2023, Flora by Petriv held an environmental day in Lviv. The group visited a composting station, where they learned how to convert organic waste into soil fertilizer for flower beds. The project is aimed at illustrating the possibility of processing waste effectively while reducing its environmental impact. The initiative also featured clean-ups in both the Lapayiv and Vynyky forests.
Recognition and Awards
Even as a relatively new organization, Flora by Petriv made noteworthy achievements during its inaugural year. Here are some of their top achievements:
- In June 2022, soon after the launch of Flora by Petriv, Sofia joined forces with classmates to participate in the division 2022 competition, arranged by IFES. The group won the forest cleaning and greening activities of the OOL project.
- In March 2023, Flora by Petriv was victorious in the Golden Flipchart 2023 competition.
- In June 2023, the organization achieved third place for the “Local Charity” category in the Charitable Ukraine event.
- Also, in June 2023, USAID published an interview with Sofia Petriv on behalf of the Flora by Petriv organization. Petriv spoke about the importance of taking care of the forests of Ukraine and the impacts on them caused by the Ukraine war.