Voices of Ukrainians #IamUkrainian

As the pain continues to unfold throughout the Russia-Ukraine crisis, and as a show of solidarity to the people of Ukraine, today we are giving up our platform to share the voices of Ukrainians and their thoughts and feelings on the conflict as darkness looms over their mother country.

Voices of Ukrainians

My name is Daria, and #IamUkrainian

voices of Ukrainians
Daria Artanovskaya, IoTeX Community Growth Lead

“I was born in Ukraine and have lived happily in Ukraine all my life. Now my husband and I live in Egypt, but we remain Ukrainians. To be a Ukrainian is not only about nationality. It’s having a strong spirit and a strong love for one’s homeland. That is in our blood, Ukrainians. The Ukrainian spirit cannot be broken. It will prevail!”

What are you feeling/thinking right now?

“I feel proud of my people, for those defending our country. We are Ukrainians! We are a sovereign nation. We do not want to be part of Russia. I also feel fear for my family, my husband’s family, our parents’, siblings’, children’s lives, and for our loved ones and relatives who are surviving. I feel fear for our future, the future of all Ukrainians, our country.

All Ukrainians are facing a tough time right now. Being far away only exacerbates our feelings for those who are not at home. We are trying our best to help them, but seven days have passed since the beginning of the conflict, and it feels like it’s been years! Every morning we wake up and check the news knowing it’s not good but hoping it is not bad.

At school, I was passionate about history. I learned one lesson very well: World War II was so bloody for all countries that we must do everything in our power to prevent a third world war.”

Any supportive words to your fellow country people/your hopes for the current crisis?

“Ukrainians are a very friendly nation. We are genuinely fraternal peoples with Russians and Belarusians. However, we are in so much pain now.

Ukrainians are strong, brave, and merciful and stand united. We’ve proven it throughout history. The Orange Revolution, the Revolution of Dignity or Maidan Revolution, and the current conflict.

I have great hope that the war will end in the coming days with the victory of Ukraine. This shall serve as a lesson to the world that there is no need to instill fear upon others. The world has just gone through a pandemic that has caused death and negative. No more, please. Let’s stop this war because we can!”

My name is Dafna, and #IamUkrainian

voices of Ukrainians
Dafna Rachok, founder of Hello My Russian Mum which translates Russian soldiers tell Ukrainian soldiers or civilians when they surrender

“I was born in Ukraine 30 years ago and have lived there for 20 years. Then I left for my graduate education and returned a couple of months ago to do my research here. I have spent time in Kyiv, Poltava, Kryvyi Rih. That is when the conflict caught me. My family, my friends, a lot of my loved ones, my colleagues still live in Ukraine. Some have already fled, some are fighting, some are helping those who fight. I was able to get to a safe place.”

What are you feeling/thinking right now?

“I cannot stop thinking about those who were less fortunate and now hear bombs flying over their heads. It is devastating. I am afraid to get up in the morning and read news. What if my friend is killed? What if my home city is captured? What if another small town full of civilians was shelled? It is devastating. It is heart-breaking. 

There are a lot of emotions circulating through me right now. Sadness, anger, fury, shame (for being safe when others are not), hope… Those are just some examples. I saw my home city being bombed and fired upon by Russian artillery. I am seeing it destroyed. It devastates me but also makes me want to help my fellow Ukrainians in every way I can. So we win together.”

Any supportive words to your fellow country people/your hopes for the current crisis?

“Ukraine will prevail. We show incredible solidarity, courage, and self-organization these days. If these qualities does not help us win, I don’t know what will. We are patient, we are merciful, we are enduring. And we love our freedom. This is what keeps us going. ”

My name is Anna and #IamUkrainian

voices of Ukrainians
Anna Makarenkova is galvanising support for Ukraine connect on her LinkedIn here

“My mum is Ukrainian, my father is Russian. I was born in Russia and raised in Ukraine. My mother-tongue is Russian. All my almost 30 years of living in Ukraine I didn’t feel less Ukrainian because of my Russian roots, I’ve never felt threatened or needing protection from the neighboring country. I left Ukraine in 2010 for international career. I lived in Singapore and Shanghai. I’m currently based in Singapore, working in global marketing excellence function for Mondelēz International with my teenager son.”

What are you feeling/thinking right now?

“Every day I see tragedy and heroism of equal size. Every Ukrainian does all they can now to defend our country. Those who can’t fight or support the army directly work tirelessly to build awareness about the situation in Ukraine, raise funds for humanitarian support, appeal to powerful organizations and institutions. All of us ask for humanitarian corridors but nobody asks for surrender. We want to live but we want to live free.

What I feel now is an overwhelming sense of purpose. It’s a tunnel view with no fear and pure motivation. I focus on providing international communities I can reach with easy ways to help Ukraine. I work together with my colleagues to secure support within our company. I welcome any opportunity to speak for my country and ask for help. If you are interested to learn more I invite you to connect via my LinkedIn profile.”

Any supportive words to your fellow country people/your hopes for the current crisis?

“Ukraine became a symbol of freedom, courage, and solidarity. Against the background of conflict, I see the most kind and empathetic side of humanity across the globe. People volunteer to fight on the side of Ukrainian armed forces. People not planning to travel anytime soon book AirBnb in Ukraine to give Ukrainians income. People living abroad as far from Ukraine as New Zealand offer their homes to total strangers from Ukraine. Just yesterday I saw a picture of strollers left at a railway station by Polish mums for arriving Ukrainian mums in case they might need them.  I think today’s children will grow better people simply because they see the best of their parents today.

To all people who can’t stand by witnessing what happens in Ukraine, I want to say thank you. Every bit of help and support matters.

To all my Ukrainian brothers and sisters, I want to say Тримаймося. Слава Україні!”

My name is Albina and #IamUkrainian

Albina Tolmach

“I was born and raised in Kharkiv Ukraine while it was still the Soviet Union.  After the fall of the USSR my family immigrated to the United States. My childhood in Kharkiv was wholesome. I watched cartoons, went to the forest in the summer to mushroom pick, skated in the winters, studied piano, and went to school. My mother is all Ukrainian born of a Ukrainian mother – Yelena. Her husband, my grandfather Sergey died in 1941 fighting in World War Two for Ukraine.” 

What are you feeling/thinking right now?

“I have never been prouder of my home country. The fact that the people of Ukraine have rebelled in the last two decades – Orange Revolution and Maidan and managed to elect a leader like Zelensky speaks volumes. After all the leader a people choose says everything about the people. I don’t think this is a conflict between Russia and Ukraine. This is a philosophical struggle being fought on world stage for freedom of speech and choice, for democracy, for peace. The whole world is watching. My heart is breaking.”

Any supportive words to your fellow country people/your hopes for the current crisis?

“I am so proud of the Ukrainian people. I wish I could say something that would alleviate the pain of Ukrainians, that would soften the heart of Putin, that would stop the conflict but I can’t.  So for now I share content on social media, donate, and try to help my family that recently fled Kharkiv to shelter in Lviv and possibly brave the Polish border. 

My sincere hope is that what the world is doing enough to support Ukraine and world democracy. If president Zelensky is the Churchill of our day even Churchill needed a lot of help to defend his country in 1945. Slava Ukraine! Slava Geroyam!” 

If you would like to add you thoughts and feelings to our voices of Ukrainians special please leave a comment below or on our Instagram and share your support.