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From Ukraine to Australia

Ukrainian refugee Dasha (Year 10), shared her experiences in Assembly, with the call for us all to take action for the sake of her country and the victims of the war.

Hi, I’m Dasha. I’m in Year 10. I’m Ukrainian, and I moved to Australia in April.

I’d like to tell you a little bit about Ukraine. Its history goes back centuries, but it gained independence only in 1991. Ukraine is a diverse country with lots of things to offer. It has forests and beaches, mountains and deserts, seas and rivers. Ukraine’s cuisine is one of the best in the world, with some dishes called crazy by foreigners, such as borsch, holodets and varenyky. My favourite thing about Ukraine is probably the Ukrainians. I can proudly call us the most united nation, as no matter what, we support each other and stay together despite the hardships we must face.

No one in Ukraine believed in the possibility of a full-scale invasion until 24 February. On that day, I didn’t wake up to the sound of my alarm, but to the sound of bombs. My mum woke me up, saying: “Wake up, the war started”, and we had to run to the basement, which served as a shelter for the next seven days until we managed to arrive in Germany after fleeing Ukraine. There I could finally continue studying remotely at my school, since my usual education was disrupted by bombing and shelling.

Since I’ve come to Australia, my life has changed completely. So far, I’ve made lots of friends, visited new places, and come to Wenona, which has brought me an endless number of opportunities. The only thing that remains unchanged is the war in Ukraine, which is still going on. A week ago, my school in the centre of my city, the capital, almost got destroyed because of one of the most intense bombings since the start of the war. Sadly, Ukraine still needs help, and as a Ukrainian, it is my mission to bring it.

Me and my family try to help as much as we can. We donate to official Ukrainian funds, such as Come Back Alive and the National Bank of Ukraine. We also attend rallies in an attempt to bring awareness to the ongoing situation in Ukraine and encourage countries (particularly Australia) to continue supporting Ukraine politically and financially.

Anyone can try to contribute to helping Ukraine. Bringing awareness by sharing news and social media posts, donating (no matter big or small), and attending rallies can help my country enormously.

Now, in Australia, the most important thing that I have is safety, and I’m very happy and grateful to be able to support my country as much as I can, even from a distance.


Year 10, 2022