“I didn’t want to leave my country, but I wanted to save my son.”
Since the start of the war, the Social Welfare Centre has supported over 3000 refugees – providing shelter, psychological assistance, food and legal services. The centre house mainly women and children as well as the elderly and those with health needs.
“On February 23rd, we were all enjoying our lives. A war coming was not like the weather where we could see that weather was bad, that rain will come. At 4:00 in the morning we were asleep, mobiles started to ring, babies woke up crying. Bombs were coming. We said, the war has started.” Ukrainian woman at the CSWC.
“Sometimes the women meet here to talk about their home.” – Magdolema Niton-Tvala, Coordinator, City Social Welfare Center of Krakow – standing in front of a map of Ukraine with heart-shaped pins indicating the cities and towns the Ukrainian women come from.
“All of the women have had tragic experiences. Not only homes destroyed, not only being forced to flee, but they have often witnessed the cruel death of their loved ones.” – Agnieszka Pens, City Social Welfare Center of Krakow
Next the laureates met with women from the Roma community. About 200 Roma have fled Ukraine to Krakow. They face discrimination in access to housing, healthcare & other supports for refugees.
“The Roma face discrimination as refugees. Yes, other refugees wait for food, healthcare and housing, but the Roma are always put at the back of the line.” – Mazena, Roma support worker with Integration Association SAWORE.
Photo credit: Ania Bystrowska/Nobel Women's Initiative
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For an overview of the Poland/Ukraine delegation click here