Diana

Friends, we have a new family. I often have to read comments about how Donbass people are freeloaders and we shouldn’t be helping them. It’s saddening to have to time and again explain, prove seemingly obvious things. That people there struggle, that there’s fighting there, and it’s not easy to leave. Yes, it’s not easy, and forget aobu tthe stories about how supposedly here in Russia they are being given everything but they are rudely refusing, they only want to come to Moscow. People, let’s just pause and think about the fact that it’s VERY difficult to get set up, and that not everyone can readily do it. Many of those whom we help have left and tried. But failed. And yes, we should not we are not helping every single person there.
Our people are not those who are simply struggling. They are people who are struggling very hard. It’s awful to have to write such things, but yes, we do see tears from people who did not expect the help. People who often have nobody to turn to, nowhere to go to and, it seems were at some breaking point. Disabled, elderly, single mothers with many children. The most vulnerable.
Our new family is like that.
Look at the kids on the photo. Their mother abandoned them.
She probably doesn’t think she did. Simply dumped them onto her elderly mother, their grandmother, and vanished. Left them in Lugansk and went somewhere without war.
Unfortunately, we sometimes see such “deadbeats”,

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Heroic Grannies

My blog is a paradox in that while 80% of my posts are about the Donbass, the most read posts are the remaining 20%. With the rarest of exceptions. As soon as I stop writing my thoughts and stories, the rating crashes (in the sense of number of views).
My life of late has not been very simple, so I’ve had little time to write the blog about myself. I promise to fix that and continue writing on the favorite themes of “Dunya once again broke/lost something, etc.”
But in spite of the fact the blog lost views, I want to give big thanks to all of those who continue helping the Donbass. In January I will have a many reports from New Year’s events, the first of which already took place. LPR people these days are veritable Stakhanovites, tirelessly delivering presents in one place after another. I will write about that, and post photos, later.
But the main thing is that in addition to presents, our friends continue to deliver aid.
Thanks to everyone who, in spite of the holidays, leave, remember that there are people who need help! This is priceless, and it’s a point of pride that we’ve been able to organize it. Thanks to our entire team which put together these complex logistics!
I’m glad to see that even with the greatest drop in readership (yes, alas, I’m always upset when this happens), the aid continues.
And that’s very cool!
The post is about our friends’ most recent visits to our grannies. Heroic grannies who raised grandchildren on their own. They are all in unbelievably difficult situations. Age, illness, sadness from losing own children, but in spite of all that they have boundless love for their grandkids and do everything for them. What is more, not all parents try as hard.
Thank you for your caring!
If you want to help these families, please label your contributions “grandmas”

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Gas was cut off

Elena Ivanovna is a quiet and gentle woman who found herself in deep trouble. There’s absolutely no-one to help her. It’s been like that. But now, thank God, she now has you and us.
We became acquainted during the summer. We’ve been trying to improve the situation since.
Elena Ivanovna lives in Lugansk. She broke a leg when the war started and due to a doctor’s error it fused improperly. She can’t walk now. Then she broke her arm so badly that she can’t work. She also can’t use crutches and is not easily transported. At that time she also lost her husband to cancer. It all piled up during the war, when it was difficult to organize normal treatment and recovery.
That’s a brief summary.

 


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Oksana’s Family

Oksana’s husband perished on May 9, 2015, defending his Motherland. I don’t even know what to write, the new Motherland of LPR, or the old one, but which one? He was a militiaman and, like many, he wen toff to defend his home in Lugansk in ’14.
He left behind a wife with two children, Masha and Kolya. Here they are, on the first photo.
Oksana went through hell and one can’t even say she’s out of it yet. Only the children are keeping her afloat. She did not really live for several years after the death, she loved her husband so much. She closed inwardly but, thank God, did not lose her mind. We have helped many children whose mothers went insane due to what they went through, and who now live with their grandmothers. Kolya and Masha live with their mom and thank God everyone is alive and well.
But they are struggling.
In the fall I wrote about how all of their appliances burned down. Thanks to the money we collected we were able to not only help the family with food and medications, but even bought them a washing machine. Oksana never asked anything of us. She is very modest and does not complain. Many thanks to caring people who volunteered to help in this difficult situation.
You know, I am often offended by people who leave comments stating they also fare poorly but “they are not takers.” I’ll say this: none of these people is a “taker”. What is more–one must ask. This is normal and correct in a difficult situation. Nobody has written a comment “Dunya, please help me, I’m barely surviving.” No, these comments are simple insults directed at me and at those whom we help. I always feel bitter when I read them. I would like there to be as few people as possible in such situations. But I would also want people not to envy others and were instead able to be happy for them.
Interestingly, often people we help turn down our aid. They may have an empty refrigerator, but they’ll say “someone needs it more”. Be merciful and don’t judge! Be able to forgive, not envy, and give. Anyone can find themselves in a tight spot, anyone at all, and this war has taught me that. Don’t judge and don’t think that if you are doing well, it’s because you are doing something rights. Sometime these are people who are at odds with logic. Don’t overestimate it, it will get ahead of you and smack you on the nose.

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Why did they stay?

One angry lady showed up in the comments section last night. She wrote two harsh comments stating that she and her three kids left the war zone, lives in Russia, is really struggling, but at least her kids don’t know what war is. The post concerned collecting aid for New Year festivities. The woman wrote that nobody brings her presents, which means those who stayed there did so because it’s beneficial to them, and that makes her very angry. They are there to collect aid.
I’ll say this–yes, we have seen people like that in ’14. Alas, they did exist. I remember one woman in Pervomaysk who did not want to leave the bomb shelter even though heavy shelling stopped a long time ago. She did not want to leave because journalists and volunteers were showing up by the hundreds. They brought food, clothing, medications. Just sit and take. But listen–it’s been five years since that time. Yes, sometimes humanitarian aid does arrive, but that’s not enough to live on. Nobody’s been living in bomb shelters for a long time, the war has moved into a new phase. No, that phase is no better or worse, it’s just different. Unruly, protracted.
The aid from our convoys is meant mainly for hospitals, kindergartens, retirement homes, dormitories, other institutions. This is real aid. They bring equipment, special preparations, insulin, and much else needed for people to live. But to say that people find it convenient to stay in the warzone is just funny. Salaries, pensions, benefits in the Republics are tiny. Life there is very difficult. It’s hard to find work, pay is low. And there’s the war. Leaving now is not like leaving in ’14 when there were refugee processing centers and many programs assisting in restarting one’s life. Now it’s a multi-layered hell where the problem is not only the institutions but even the question of where to turn to. Even with one kid it’s a problem, and what do you do when you have three? And what about single moms, elderly, disabled, bedridden? What are they to do?
The lady was very angry, but her pain and the difficulty of her situation were plainly felt. She removed her comments after some time. But I can say that I constantly encounter such opinions concerning those who remained among those who have left, and also among Russians. Very many condemn those who live there. And I always answer the same–you have no idea what you would have done yourselves in that situation.
My friend from Lugansk did not leave because her parents absolutely refused to leave their land and she couldn’t leave them. Everyone has their own pain and own reasons. It’s seemingly obvious, but apparently, not entirely since people are constantly making similar comments.
That’s how tit is.
Friends, thanks to all who continue to help our team in helping people of the Donbass. In this post there is a report on medications for two people who are really struggling.
Did they have an opportunity to leave? Why did they stay? I don’t think it’s for us or that lady to judge. But I know that anyone can find themselves in a tough spot. Anyone at all.
And I’m glad we can help them somehow.

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After the Surgery

Since the summer, we’ve been helping Elena Ivanovna from Lugansk, which found herself in a really tough spot. He injured her hip after the war began, she had an improperly inserted pin into her leg (I published the x-ray earlier). It all fused improperly, too. A few years later she had a serious arm injury. This made it impossible for her to walk on crutches. She was stuck at home, isolated. Her husband died of cancer at the same time.
The woman lives with her 15-year-old son. No relatives. I can’t imagine what would have become of her it we didn’t help her. She couldn’t even get a decent diagnosis. Doctors passed her around, said various things at different times. They talked of prosthetics for which she had no hope. And only in late September did we learn that in order to have a prosthesis the pin had to be taken out. A new joint could be installed six months after that.
Elena has lived in Lugansk with a Russian passport for over 20 years, having a residence permit. That’s why she couldn’t get normal health care. LPR passport was difficult for Elena to get. And even though everyone was very understanding of her disability, it is Lena who had to take Elena Ivanovna to all the offices in her wheelchair. She kicked ind doors, pleaded, talked to the long lines of the waiting. She was able to get the passport very quickly. Danya, her son, would have hardly been able to tackle such problems.
We managed to set her up with good doctors for the surgery. It took place in late October.
How’s she doing now?

Since the last post, our friends have visited her six times at the hospital. Constantly on the phone.
I want to say this one more time–she has nobody to help her but us. Danya is at school, he can’t help his mom on his own. He has his own struggles. It’s a long trip for him, too, they live in upper Kambrod, while the hospital is in Yubileynoye (the outskirts of Lugansk). 90 minutes with transfers. He spent the first week after the surgery at the hospital, the school had to be notified of his absence.
Zhenya writes:
“The surgery went very well. Elena Ivanovna is feeling better. Her mood is as good as ever. But a week later a fever–an inflammation of some sort…Some of the stitches were removed. In some places there were black blood pools. Pain…

But everything is still ahead, there’s already hope that she’ll recover fully.
Thanks to all who are helping in our assistance effort!
If you want to join in, please label your contributions “Elena”.

Lena and Zhenya also told us about Elena’s hospital room. I can’t help but quote them: “A room for 6. Each with their own story. Own pain and tragedy. A woman in the next bed was brought from Molodogvardeysk, with orders to “amputate the leg”. A young doctor looked, said, “we’ll fight for the leg”. Opened it up, cleaned, cut something out. The leg was saved, no function lost. Good, right? The next neighbor was already discharged, she came from Schastye (under Ukraine) under the “Helping Our Countrymen” program. She was put back on her feet in a month, for free. She spent 4 months in Schastye, in hospital, with no result. This is good, too. Another woman from Stakhanov, sold her apartment that used to belong to her parents. In order to pay for a hip joint implant. It was installed, but then there was rejection, infection, another surgery to remove the implant. More infection, then a stroke, died on Wednesday. She screamed a lot…Two people had died in that room while Elena Ivanovna was being treated. A grandmother, very kind, nice, and patient, died on the same day. This is their daily life…There are also many young militiamen being treated for shrapnel wounds. War quietly continues. They are trying not to advertise it. “Every so often they bring in young, wounded boys”. This was said by a doctor with an angry gaze…”



If you want to help the people of the Donbass, please write me in person through LiveJournal, facebook,  V Kontakte, or email: littlehirosima@gmail.com. Paypal address: littlehirosima@gmail.com.

Please label contributions for this family “Elena”.

Visiting the Redheads

Our guys visited the redheads a couple of times. The kids had tonsillitis. But even sick, with fever, they were beaming life. Our sunny living dynamos)
When our Lena visited, they threw themselves at her, and told her the tales of how they were being treated. Which medications they took, how their throats were being brushed.
Just look at them!

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The pin was removed!

Friends, we finally have good news about Elena Ivanovna!
Do you remember the woman from Lugansk with a major leg problem?
In ’15 she suffered a fracture of the hip joint after which the local doctors inserted a pin and everything fused together improperly. Ever since then she’s had difficulty walking, and only with crutches. Then she broke her arm and could not use crutches. Her husband died of cancer in the meantime. There are problems with the arm, too. We started to help Elena during the summer. She and her young son are completely alone.
The problem lay in that she could not get a free joint in LPR since she is a Russian citizen even though she’s lived there since the ’90s and had a residence permit. She was not able in her condition to leave for Russia and get free treatment there.
But now we have terrific news!

Our friends have done the impossible!
She got an LPR passport in the shortest time possible! Thanks to, specifically, Lena. She simply took Elena Ivanovna in her wheelchair and went to one institution after another. And you know what–people saw her condition and went out of their way to help. How did it happen? Nobody can believe it. Everything was done literally in a week.
Naturally, Lena’s titanic stubbornness were key. One must have enormous internal reserves to do that. Anyone who’s dealt with such institutions knows. My hat’s off to her.
As soon as she got her passport she was operated on. Zhenya consulted with some outstanding doctors.
But it’s not the final joint replacement surgery.
On a tip from Tanya Anikina and a doctor she knew in Moscow who saw the x-rays, we learned that before new joint is installed the pin installed by the “bone-breakers” which basically crippled her must be removed. The operation took place in October ’15. Took 3 hours. The doctors said it was “bloody”.

 


This post contains photos from before and after the surgery. We bought all the medications and everything necessary for the surgery. Lena came to the hospital almost immediate after it was over.
Zhenya: “Elena Ivanovna was practically born anew. She was very worried, and now she’s not the pain-ridden fearful woman, but instead has a merry fire in her eyes. ‘I still can’t believe it was all done in a week”‘. We were dumbfounded as well. We intensified our efforts and it all somehow came together. Genuine miracles. Such a mad pace, though. You go home, and your head is still buzzing”.

So those are the news. Rather good ones at that!
Now we have to wait 6 months until everything sets. We hope to resolve the joint problem during this time.
Elena Ivanovna practically has wings, she’s trying to move on her own now.
But at night she has terrible pains. Hospitals don’t have morphine, they use whatever they have. Which is not enough.

Big thanks to Zhenya and Lena. It was heroic on their part, obtain the passport and the operation so quickly!
Thanks to Tanya who helped with the information, and thanks to all those to donated money! Thank you all for your participation.
But everything is still ahead of us. The start has been made, though, which is very important.
I am happy beyond measure to be able to write such “news”. Because all of it was in a suspended state for a long time, because nobody wanted to tackle such a hard case.
In hoc signo vinces!

If you want to contribute to Elena Ivanovna’s recovery, please label your contributions “Elena”.

If you want to help the people of the Donbass, please write me in person through LiveJournal, facebookV Kontakte, or email: littlehirosima@gmail.com. Paypal address: littlehirosima@gmail.com.

Please label contributions for this family “Elena”.

News from Oksana!

Friends, we have wonderful news from Oksana!!!
I wrote about the woman in late August. It was titled “It didn’t burn because it was empty”, and described how difficult it was for Oksana and her two kids in Lugansk.
She became a widow–her husband joined the militia almost immediately at the beginning and died in ’15–a bullet wound to the head.
The strange name of that post was due to the fridge. There was a short circuit or something like that and all the electrical appliances burned out, down to mobile phones that were being recharged.
Now she’s really struggling.
She has a disability and serious headaches. The benefits due to the loss of a breadwinner in LPR are miserly.
Many people wrote me who all wanted to help Oksana.
Here I want to say, big thanks to you all! Thank you for being there, for your compassion and caring. We were all in shock)
And you can imagine Oksana’s shock!
We were able to collect a lot of money. After talking to her, we bought her a washing machine!!!! That’s how things are. Please look at the kids, at how they are smiling.
Because the mom is smiling, too)
Things are on the mend.
Mom’s hands and back will be able to rest)

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Irina Aleksandrovna

Irina Aleksandrovna is from the village of Frunze, LPR. It’s in the “gray zone”. You know what that is? Briefly, a place where there’s fighting. On the “line of contact.” After yet another shell impact (which are not rare there) the woman grabbed her four grandkids, picked up the bag with documents, and drove to Lugansk. Abandoned a house where she had lived her whole life. Where are the children’s parents? They are the sort that social workers euphemistically refer to as “unfit”. The mother exists only on paper. But luckily the kids have a grandma.
Irina Aleksandrovna was born in 1963. When Lena visited them, she was not clear on who was coming with the kids. A child, a sister? Tiny, thin, “only eyes”.
The woman fled to Lugansk. Friends of friends put her up in an apartment near Kambrod. It was empty since ’14–the owner had left. But allowed them to live there.

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