Making a decision to move abroad is life-changing and sometimes challenging. I remember hesitating over this difficult choice - to move abroad or stay home. It was during a peaceful time, but this decision gets more complicated when your home country is at war. I am Viktoriia Kolomiiets, and today we will talk about young Ukrainian professionals during the war crisis. Three million migrants have fled the war in Ukraine, with more than half going to Poland. It is around 7 percent of the total population of Ukraine. When the war starts, most people put their lives on hold, patiently waiting for the victory, but not Yuliia Kashkalda, a 24-year-old Ukrainian dentist who has recently moved to Kety city in Poland following her dream career
I realized that my home is not the place that will let me grow anytime soon. I did not want to put my life on hold. I wanted to grow now while I am still young. I wanted to be successful and make my family proud. I did not find a paid job as a dentist yet, but I am doing an internship as a dental assistant, and I think it will help me grow and improve my skills. I also work in the restaurant to be able to pay my bills. My goal is to work as a dentist and have it as my main job.
Staying inside the country on fire might be even more complicated. Still, Vlada Fedorchenko, a 24-year-old English teacher and a children's social support volunteer in Poltava city in Ukraine, decided to stay and help her motherland. Vlada supports orphan kids who have been transferred to her town from bombed parts of Ukraine.
You know when the war started every employed person in Ukraine had additional duties and responsibilities and, of course, I am not an exception. As I am an English teacher and my main duty is to help people, I couldn’t get past everything what was happening. Many settlers, both adults and children, lost their home and they were bombed, crashed, they had to leave their cities for safer life and settled in schools in Ukraine, of course, in my city too. I conduct charity lessons with children, help them with everything they need. If they have any problems or they need something, they can always call me and ask for help.
You know like every person when war started the first thoughts were “Oh my God, what will happen next, what will happen with us? I don’t want to die; I want to live. I must move somewhere looking for safety.” But these were only first minute thoughts and then I strongly decided for myself that I will stay here, this is my country, and who if not me will defend it? Who will revive it? Who will help those orphans who lost their parents during the current war. This is the easiest thing to do – to leave the country looking for a better life, but to stay and even if necessary go to the front line and fight by the cost of your life.
Some relatives and friends told me that I should have stayed in Ukraine and helped my family and my little siblings. But I feel more useful working abroad and supporting them financially. My mother lost her job because of the war, and at the end of the day, someone has to put a bread on the table.
My intentions is to share all my skills and knowledge to other people and rebuild the country by increasing the number of opportunities for work so that people in the future can come to us and know that this country is full of professionals in their fields.
I belong to Ukraine, and it makes me sad that I cannot professionally grow in my home country. Sometimes I feel depressed and doubt that I made the right decision. I think about returning back home every day, but I also cannot give up. I am not used to giving up. As for now, I want to go home as soon as I get all the benefits of European work experience, but I also think my decision could be changed in the future. I love my country and support it the best I can from abroad, but I will always put my family first, and I will make the decision based on their benefits.
I respect every decision and understand that every person has the right to choose what’s better for them and, of course, if you have kids or feel that you won’t be able to help from inside the country, at least to something outside of it.
My family. Everything I do is to make their future better. I also believe that every person has to follow their dream even if it requires leaving their home. My dream is to be a professional dentist.
this episode was produced and managed by me, Viktoriia Kolomiiets. Thanks for listening