Back to School!

It’s still summer, but the fall will be upon us soon, which means not only yellow leaves but also school. Which in turn means notebooks, pens, backpacks, and all kids of other stuff kids need. And yes, kids in LPR/DPR also go to school, attend after-school clubs, and they need all that very badly. Maybe even more than our kids.
All of that costs a lot. For many Donbass people, late August and the fall are a difficult time of the year. Because the average monthly salary is 5,000 rubles. Sometimes all these school supplies are an unaffordable luxury. It’s a luxury to buy pen holders and book sleeves…
Have you calculated how much it costs to prepare one school child for September 1?
These children are not simply children. They are children of war. They live in a different reality and for many of them colorful markers, pretty erasers are a source of joy so great that it’s hard to believe in our reality with prosciutto and i-Phones.
So Lena and Zhenya carried out “Operation Y” [a reference to a famous Soviet-era film] to collect school supplies for the people we care for. But unfortunately we were not able to collect enough for all. Especially for those families for whom we are making separate collections and the particularly needy ones–you know them all well.
We really want to help both. Last year we and you were able to collect many school kids for children whose parents are on the registry at the Lugansk Aid Center. These are foster kids, families with many children, single moms, disabled kids.
We want to help as many kids as possible!!!
So I’m calling on you to join in this effort!))) Come on board!
If you do, please label your contributions “school”.
And you must see the photo report on what we’ve bought so far.
Just look at how improbably happy they are!!!
Lena and her parents and kids went shopping and picked out everything. So the boys and girls got to pick the color of their notebooks, backpacks, pencils, paper, everything they needed.
Lenochka, you and Zhenya are totally awesome!!! It’s so good to have you with us! Thank you!

This is Vika and Alyona. It’s so unexpected to see them together on the same photo, after all they’ve never seen one another.

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Ours

Not too long ago, someone put one of my posts on Yandex-Zen and the number of my blog’s views went straight up.
I haven’t seen that since 2014, and that’s very good. And I would like to tell new readers that, in spite of my numerous selfies and Crimea photos, our aid to the people of Donbass is ongoing. We continue to help nearly every day. And thanks to those who participate in it. This is a complex, multi-stage process, linked by many invisible threads.
I don’t know how often I should write about Donbass. I could write reports every day, or once a week. Now I write several times a week, so as not to overload you. And to be honest, it’s hard for me to write more often, I get lost in the thicket of phrases. What’s more, I have written about it so many times that it’s difficult for me to find a new way to tell it, and I feel like a bore.
But, overall, thank you for being with me.
This report-post is about people under our constant care. There have been so many posts about them that I don’t want to become a parrot repeating the same over and over again. Please read about them, there are tags at the bottom of the post pertaining to them. This is assistance to people who find it hard to survive in wartime conditions.

This is our Seryozha. Seryozha, Seryozha, Seryozha…Not a simple story to tell. He now lives in a retirement home in Lugansk. Without a leg, a home, a family, but with polyarthritis…


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Our Chronicle

I wrote a large, pathos-laden speech before this report but then erased it. Such words are probably unnecessary here.
Bitterness, sadness, sense of injury–these feelings must be removed from posts. It seems that, over the last three and a half years, we got tired of it. And if our earlier stories were full of tragedy, they’ve since become a chronicle. A chronicle of war, of aid, of human fates. I’d like to change a lot in the surrounding us world, but all I can do is talk about tiny fragments of human lives.
These are our “workdays” which are difficult to tell in a novel way every time.
Because they’ve become a “routine”, which fills our days.
For example, the story of Marina and Alyona, two girls who live without their parents.
The older one works and feeds and younger who is a student. They’ve never seen their fathers, the mother is unfit and even the girls say “it’s better she never comes back.”
So here I’m looking at a photo with the older Marine and the aid we brought, and see a very thin girl. Tiny, fragile, and a stuff elephant with a raised trunk. For some reason I wanted to write about the pink elephant. Small, like Marine herself, on a sofa in an apartment where there’s almost no furniture. With a rug as backdrop. The whole internet makes fun of things like that. But the rug keeps the heat in…And decorates the utterly empty apartment.


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Nothing but good news

The last two days were perfectly crazy, as we, dressed up as Grandfather Frost and Snow Maiden visited practically all of Lugansk.
By the evening we were barely standing and it seems I dreamed we visited more kids and made them read poetry.
Cars were honking at us, people were waving and nearly all the adults were excitedly conveying us New Year’s greetings.
We visited many apartments, but this post will cover only those which you already know.
The people we help, those whom you periodically see on the pages of this blog.
Here we are visiting the family of Vitaliy, a militiaman from Rubezhnoye. Vitaliy spent over a year in captivity in Ukraine. Now he, his wife, and son live in a dorm in Lugansk.

 

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Sisters

It was dark when we arrived without warning to visit Alyona and Marina.
A dark stairwell, a poorly lit street. Light on the first floor. We knock but nobody opens the door. We knock on the window–silence.
We stand in the stairwell and don’t know what to do. We left their phone numbers at home.
Lena says incredulously: “The light is on–they should be home. Where else would they be? The little one is back from school, Marina is also back from work. They never go anywhere.”
Ten minutes later a tiny thin lady shows up and immediately goes on the attack: “Do you have business here?”

Helping Donbass kids go to school

A few days prior to September 1 were got thinking many people on the Donbass can’t afford to buy their kids anything for school. They simply have no money. Then I wrote a post and you know what? You and I turned out to be quite awesome.
Look.
We got in touch with the Lugansk Aid Center and coordinated the list of necessities. Thanks to the money you sent, we managed to prepare 22 kids for school. It’s not just pens, pencils, supplies, but even pen holders and backpacks.
Zhenya described the distribution thusly: “To be perfectly serious, several moms were crying since they had no idea how to buy these things, and the kids must go to school…”

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Latest News

Tanya recently had a surgery in Lugansk. Mastectomy.
Analyses are in.
Bad news. Metastases, fourth phase…
Chemo had begun. The second round will be in the fall. Until then, she was released home. She has a son whom she’s raising alone…
The guys have been visiting Tanya nearly every day at the hospital to support her and bring her some treats.
They say that Tanya so far doesn’t feel anything. She looks better, feels better.
That’s where things stand.


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