Editor’s Note: The images below were provided by an SGA-supported church in Poland.
Horrible things happened in Mariupol. Below is an interview with Marina, now a refugee, who shares about the horrific explosions, burning houses, and people dying throughout her town. While tough to read, it will give you a glimpse of what the Ukrainian people are enduring.
From the interview with Marina…
My name is Marina. I am from Mariupol. For one month, I have been living in hell. I consider us very fortunate that we lived in our own house, as you know, in your own house you feel more at home. Nevertheless, now I learnt about shelling, GRADs rocket systems, mortars, I learnt how to quickly cut a tree and chop wood. I know how to kindle a fire, cook or fry any food, as long as it is edible. It was hard, because we are just two women, without a man’s shoulder, as my Dad, thank God, did not live to those days.
My mother and I lived in the area of private houses; every Mariupol resident knows where the 8th Gate district is. We were lucky that there was a spring near our place, and we could get at least some water. In the city, there was no water, no gas, no light, no heat …
Did you have anything to eat?
Again, we lived in a private house, that is, we had small but still some reserves. Unfortunately, not so much potatoes; we had to save on everything. During that month, I lost 10 kg and became 3 sizes smaller, and Mom also lost weight.
How did you survive the shelling?
The first two weeks were dreadful, as we were frightened of every sound of explosion. Later, we became indifferent, and that was probably the worst thing. It is not even scary when a plane flies at night and you wait in horror where the bombs will fall; but when you leave the house and see mortar shelling taking place, and you see burning houses and people dying in them, and a thought comes to you, “Thank God, it is not us.” This realization comes only after you have escaped that hell, as while you are there, you consider such thoughts quite normal, because you have another task – to survive and rescue your loved ones.
How did you escape?
We were fortunate. Our neighbor was going to take his family out – his wife and two children. We had friendly relationships. He came to us and said that we had 40 minutes to get ready, and that he could take us out with his family. The man came under mortar fire and his car was badly damaged. There were no side windows, rear window in the car, but we managed to leave the city for Mariupol.
It is even hard to recall how we were driving through the city, and what we saw in the city – the city itself looked dead. We literally drove over people’s dead corpses, as it was the only way seemingly safe, although it was not. We tried to go around the debris and rubble…
In a time of great uncertainty, God is bringing help, healing, and hope to the people of Ukraine through SGA-supported pastors, churches, a seminary, and SGA-sponsored Compassion Ministry. Be a part of God’s incredible work with your generosity and prayer support.
Your gift of compassion helps struggling people with emergency aid that generally includes Scripture materials, food, medicine, warm clothing, and shoes.