Anna left fourteen days ago with her two children, her ex-husband Sacha, his new wife and their child. They left their parents, the businesses they had just set up, their lives, at home.
Because Mykolaiv, strategically located on the edge of the Black Sea, east of Odessa, is today under the bombs. When it had half a million inhabitants, it suddenly emptied, leaving only warriors determined to defend this lock to Odessa or irreducible people, especially the elderly. (See photo report from Le Monde about those who stayed in the city below)
Anna’s mother stayed, for example, because she takes care of her own parents over the age of 80, for whom there is no question of leaving. With three children from 4 to 13 years old, Anna, Sacha and his new buddy have chosen to leave to give them shelter in the hope of returning as soon as possible.
Packed in Sacha’s car, the family left Ukraine via Moldova, Romania, Hungary, Austria, Germany and finally France and Nogent-sur-Marne, where a cousin of Sacha has lived for a few years. Impossible though to accommodate these six people with the cousin couple already cramped on their 20 m2. It does not matter, the cousin’s husband struggles to find a solution and visits the city’s hotels until one offers to line them up for a week, including breakfast! A photo shop, for its part, agrees to take the identity photos for free. And it does not matter, because it takes 4 pictures for the prefecture, 4 for health insurance, ie 8 pictures per person to be multiplied by 6 … Since last Saturday, the couple has been welcomed by the Red Cross center installed at Creteil .
Read also: Créteil: intense first day at the reception center for refugees from Ukraine
Difficult when not fitting in the boxes
They now have a box in the large Marie-Thérèse high school in Eyquem. A transitional reception while waiting for a task in permanent residence. This Wednesday morning they were almost gone. They were asked to pack their suitcases. But in the end it did not happen. Because their situation does not exactly fit into the boxes. It is truly a decomposed family. If they left at 6 o’clock to escape the war, it is complicated to imagine a long-term cohabitation between Anna, her ex-husband and her new wife … Result: several false starts. It might be tomorrow. In the centers, the distribution of refugees to reception centers is not easy to organize.
Also read: Noisy-le-Grand: Reception of Ukrainian refugees in full run-in
From now on, Anna projects herself half in France, half in Ukraine. “We are always on our phones, watching the news, chatting with those who stayed in Ukraine. Some say the war will end in a few days”, she testifies. But the conflict, which has already been going on for a month, can also come to a standstill. Without completely deciding to do so, the family cannot hide this possibility. So you have to move on, project yourself into a job, into educating children …
“As for the school, we want to organize. We have already reviewed coronavirus with distance learning courses ”, Anna remembers. But at the moment it is not possible, the teacher also had to leave to escape from the bombings. The children might want to go to the French school. Otherwise, Anna is ready to teach. She, who was a school psychologist and had just started her own practice, is also ready to help the Red Cross if something is put in place around the children.
Her ex-husband, who had just set up his plumbing equipment business, is also thinking about finding work in this field, perhaps with repairs.
A truck to Poland
Meanwhile, the family came to participate with a few hundred people from Nogent in the demonstration, which was organized on Wednesday in support of the Ukrainian people as well as the twin city of Boleslawiec, which receives thousands of refugees. The city has also sent a truck with clothes and equipment towards its twin.
Fifteen Ukrainian refugee families in Nogent
In Nogent-sur-Marne, about fifteen Ukrainian households have already come to settle, most often with family. And a dozen people also came to offer accommodation to the city’s spokesman for the reception of Ukrainians, Véronique Dubois, head brigades of the municipal police. Its role: to facilitate, guide, advise. “For example, we had a pregnant woman who arrived, I made an emergency appointment for her with a midwife from Maternal Childhood Protection (PMI) before she even had her papers and its state medical care (AME)”, entrusts the brigadier general, who also refers to domestic violence. There is also this lonely lady, a little desperate, who arrived in France with her son, who dumped her in Nice and let her fend for herself. “Today she lives with a pensioner”, says Véronique Dubois. To reach the speaker, call 01 88 29 65 25 or send an email to referentukraine @ admi-communicationville-nogentsurmarne-fr