Stories that you confided to us

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Stories that you confided to us

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Elena Thyssen
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"War came to our house out of nowhere"

They had to leave their lovely city of Donetsk because of the attacks. Children went to Kyiv, parents went to the village. There was no electricity there for a whole year. The Foundation's food packages helped to survive. They hope that family will reunite after the war.

Let's hope that this will all end soon, that children will stop flinching from loud sounds, and the elderly will receive a pension regardless of where they live. I would very much like my children and grandchildren to gather together at a festive table under a peaceful sky.

You know how people say "Life isn't all beer and skittles". I am 58 years old, a mother of four children and grandmother of seven grandchildren. I was born in Artemivsk, Donetsk Oblast, and grew up and studied in Donetsk. What a beautiful city it is —clean, cosy, blooming! And people here are  hospitable, polite, and friendly.

War came to our house out of nowhere

Having received my degree and gotten married, I had to leave my favourite city. We lived, or rather did our military service in Czechoslovakia, in Lviv, in Norilsk. Still, we wanted to go home to Donetsk.

When I retired and got my pension, I came home and thought that I would feel better. The older daughters got their degrees, got married, and had their first children. Son finished a technical school in 2012, got a job, got married. After that, my third grandchild was born.

"This is not an anti-terrorist operation, but war —  blind and merciless"

Everyone had a place to live and a job. Calm and joyful life was just ahead. In 2014, my other granddaughter and a grandson were born. What a happiness! But war came to our house out of nowhere.

War came to our house out of nowhere

Some call it the ATO, but we who live here know that this is wa — blind and merciless. Everything turned upside down that moment.

The eldest daughters went to Kyiv, saving children from attacks. The younger ones with small children stayed in the village, thinking that all this would not last long, that people would have the sense to stop this outrage.

"Mother didn't want to leave her husband's grave"

My mother remained in Donetsk. She did not want to leave her husband's grave, reasonably judging that there is no country for old men. Our parents had an enviable fate — their life began under the explosions in the war and ended under the explosions.

You know the saying "Never say never". So that is how it turned out for us. Having a stable income, a job, and a place to live, everything faded away in a moment. At first, our village was as if on the sidelines, and in September 2014, we found ourselves in the center of events.

We learned what shelling was. We slept in the cellar. There was no place to buy bread, and there was no electricity for a whole year. We resumed our electricity supply in December 2015.

"My heart bleeds"

Half of the houses in the village have been destroyed. I am a city man, but now my heart bleeds – fields have not  been cultivated for  three years (they are mined). People have no jobs. During this time, my husband, son, and son-in-law lost their jobs. Here we live, three families ( 10 people) on my and my husband's pension payments.

The older daughters live in Kyiv and try to get by somehow. My mother is also having a difficult time. To be left alone with such a large family close by. She has to reapply for her pension every six month. Plus, she is 78 years old and she suffers from health problems.

"Food packages help us survive"

War came to our house out of nowhere

Many thanks to Rinat Leonidovich for his help and for children's kits. These products help us survive in difficult times. We really appreciate what other people do for us. When I receive aid, I can allocate funds for medicines and baby food.

Let's hope that this will all end soon, that children will stop flinching from loud sounds, and the elderly will receive a pension regardless of where they live. I would very much like my children and grandchildren to gather together at a festive table under a peaceful sky.

War came to our house out of nowhere
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