Representatives of CBN-Emmanuel who work in the so-called “gray zone” in war-affected eastern Ukraine know that the elderly people living in villages at the demarcation line find it the most difficult to live at war.
There are many elderly people left in these places – they couldn’t follow their children and grandchildren who moved to safer cities and towns of Ukraine.
Emmanuel distributes peat briquettes from the organization “Convoy of Hope” in the front-line villages. There is a long line of people well over 60 gathered near the truck with solid fuel.
Valentyna Petrivna is one of the people waiting in line. Her daughter died in 2012, and her son-in-law died in 2007. Two of their orphaned grandchildren, 13-year-old Vanya and 15-year-old Vladislav are now living with Valentyna.“War itself is not the worst thing, – shares the old lady… – Losing the loved ones is much scarier. My only daughter first lost her husband, she was a widow for 5 years, and then God took her too. When Olya was gone, the youngest Vanya was only 6 years old and I thought that I would not survive. I experienced a terrible grief until I was able to realize that I was not the only one who suffered, children experienced it too. I pulled myself together and started to care for them, replacing both the father and the mother for the boys...”
After 2 years after the death of her daughter another tragedy came to their life in the form war. No one in their village could understand who was fighting against whom or why they were shooting at each other. One thing was clear, however, – a real war began in Ukraine with very real shooting, finding shelters in the basement, fear of death … Valentyna and her children have been experiencing all of this for the last 4 years. They have accustomed to living at war but still can’t cope with the cold in the winter. A projectile may or may not hit their house and it’s like a lottery… However, when freezing cold hits, no one can escape. When the temperature falls below zero, one needs to spend your entire pension on coal or look for firewood in the forest for hours! There is no other option – otherwise you can freeze to death.
The Convoy of Hope charitable organization, through the Emmanuel Association has provided peat briquettes to people living in the war zone.
Now, with this support from CBN-Emmanuel, this family has a supply of fuel for the whole winter season and the issue of heating has been resolved for them for this year. Now they are waiting and praying for shooting to stop…
Anna Chaban for CBN-Emmanuel