Dunya

Dunya’s days are filled with volunteer work: she is helping to get the families of friends out of Ukraine, organizing a class for Ukrainian kids in Berlin primary school, hosting refugees in her house, taking a driving license course - all this while looking after her two small daughters.

 

Dunya is the eldest daughter in the family with 7 children. Her two younger brothers had to flee from Russia to Georgia, the sister of her brother’s wife - from Kiev to Berlin. Dunya and her husband haven’t moved for political reasons. They moved for work, to get a new exciting experience, to raise their kids in a safer environment. They thought this move, probably, could have been only temporary.

"Since the war started, the life I was used to has ended. And it still feels like I am in a nightmare with its own strange rules and logic. You make coffee and there - the house shelling, you roll your first morning cigarette and there - people are getting killed. 

 

Never have I felt as painfully as I do now - for my family and friends, for those who stayed and for those who left. Both in Russia and in Ukraine. These worries are like a terrible avalanche that carries you relentlessly.  Volunteering is the only thing that helps you to switch and adds meaning. I take on even too much and do it quite consciously. At the end of the day I collapse from fatigue, and then I get up and start fiddling again. And it's probably not the best solution, but otherwise I constantly have to think that this dream, unbearable and creepy, isn't over yet".