On February 24, the war broke into our lives and the lives of our children. The war took a lot away: our dreams, hopes, smiles, a happy and carefree childhood; the war divided children’s lives into a “before” and “after”. Our little ones are the most vulnerable now. However, war mustn’t take their childhood away.
“Home can be taken away, but not childhood. We want the displaced children to recover from the horror they experienced, to remember that they are children, and simply to enjoy playing and talking with each other. Warming each child’s heart with love, becoming a source of light and support for them, protecting them from the evil of the war, we contribute to our future and to the future of Ukraine.”
“I am a primary school teacher from the town of Pyryatyn,” says our heroine Ms. Natalya, the recipient of a microgrant. “This year, many families from those regions where active hostilities were taking place or those that suffered from a full-scale Russian invasion moved to our town. Thousands of displaced families with children have to build a normal life from scratch; they try to provide their children with the basic needs, education and leisure, and try to restore their state of mind destroyed by the war, all while having limited resources. My first grade student Bohdanchyk is also one of those whose home was taken away by the war…”
Childhood cannot be put on hold
“The boy and his mother have come from Sloviansk, the frontline town that is currently one of the hottest spots on the map of military operations. Bohdanchyk told me that they were leaving in a hurry because the city was being shelled very brutally. From all the toys that were at home, he managed to only grab his favorite teddy bear and left the rest behind.
The boy is very diligent in his studies, he is a good student who does well in all school subjects, but Bohdanchyk misses his best friend, the home he had to leave, and his toys… The family can’t afford to buy new toys for the boy, and I want to make him happy so much! Someone would say that entertainment is not relevant, but it is important for children. No one will bring their childhood back, so we must give it to them! I was so happy to see a post about a microgrant for a good cause from Goodacity. This help during the war can become the spark that will light the fire of happiness in children’s eyes!”
“I bought some board games with the funds from the microgrant, as Bohdanchyk said that he really enjoyed playing them, and I invited the boy and his mother to school to pick the gifts up. His joy knew no bounds!”
“Is this all for me?!” Bohdanchyk couldn’t believe his luck, looking at a large package of games. “This is a lot. Let me take a few, and we will leave the rest for other children. Because if we have to leave here because of the war, it would be a pity to waste these games…” These words are childish and completely mature at the same time, they touched my heart and moved me to tears. The war broke into the children’s lives, it changed them, but childhood cannot be put on hold!
Helping those who need it cannot be postponed as well. Children are not just our future, they are our present, and we are responsible for their future!”
Those who hold the wings of dreams
“We were so lucky to get to the wonderful town of Pyryatyn and this incredible school with the best, most caring teacher,” Bohdanchyk’s mother states, not holding back her emotions. “We thank all the people who have sheltered us, everyone who helps. The school became a second home for my son!”
“Our teachers had so many jobs in the past nine months,” Ms. Natalya says with a laugh. “We were volunteers, cooks (this spring we went to cook food for our defenders who had a training base in the town), psychologists… The school became a shelter for many people. And the most important thing for us is to teach children and to help their development, even during the war, to be able to provide them with a happy childhood.”
“Children are happy when their dreams come true! And adults are happy when they have a chance to make children’s dreams come true,” Ms. Natalya says. “Help during the war is essential, especially in such a difficult time for all of us. It is so nice to be involved in creating warm stories of help. Kindness ignites children’s smiles, and children’s smiles light the sun in our eyes!”
“I am deeply grateful to Goodacity for the opportunity to give children warmth, care, and faith in a miracle, which is especially significant currently with the conditions of the war. You are the ones who hold the wings of dreams!”