|The impact of migration on the families and the social security system of the country of origin. The Ukrainian case|
|Care migration, in responding to new needs arisen in Western countries, is transforming western welfare systems and allowing western families to fill in their care needs. In the mean time, the increased feminisation of migration from countries of Eastern and South-Eastern Europe creates a problem of “care drain” and transforms families and welfare systems in the countries of origin as well. It results in new gender balances where members of transnational families put in place compensatory strategies to alleviate the care drain problem. On the macro level, female migration represents a challenge for local institutions (governmental agencies, NGOs and social services) to respond to these new needs.
Relying on interviews with different stakeholders and with migrant women conducted in Ukraine and in Italy (2006-2008), the aim of this paper is first to analyze women migration from Ukraine and its effects on the families back home, focusing on the welfare of children and the elderly people left behind. The discussion will also take into account the consequences of EU enlargement and of restrictive migration policies implemented in receiving countries on migratory patterns in Ukraine and on transnational family strategies (e.g. choice of destination country, length of separation between family members, decisions relating to reunification). Second, this paper will evaluate the way state agencies and the third sector in Ukraine have perceived and responded to the consequences of labor migration on the social sphere. I will argue that since Independence (1991) the Ukrainian government have implemented policy targeting the return of ethnic Ukrainian living abroad, whereas the needs of new migrants and their families haven’t been taken into account.