LOS ANGELES — It’s been one month since Russian troops invaded Ukraine and the fallout has been dramatic.
The U.N. reports that there have been 2,571 civilian casualties, including 977 people killed and over 1,000 injured in the country. Forty-two of those killed have been children. Millions have left Ukraine to escape the fighting. UNICEF reports that over 10 million Ukrainians are now displaced.
What You Need To Know
- As the humanitarian crisis becomes more dire, neighboring nations to Ukraine like Poland are welcoming most of the refugees
- President Biden announced that the U.S. would welcome up to 100,000 Ukrainians
- Some refugees who have travel visas have already been able to come to the country and stay with family members
- Last week Anastasiia Chuba, her mother, Olga, and 4-year-old daughter, Sasha, arrived at LAX
As the humanitarian crisis becomes more dire, neighboring nations to Ukraine like Poland are welcoming most of the refugees. On Thursday, President Joe Biden announced that the U.S. would welcome up to 100,000 Ukrainians. Some refugees who have travel visas have already been able to come to the country and stay with family members.
Last week Anastasiia Chuba, her mother, Olga, and 4-year-old daughter, Sasha, arrived at LAX.
They had been traveling for 10 days before their flight to Los Angeles. They drove from Kyiv through Ukraine to Slovakia, then took a bus to Prague, made their way to Amsterdam and finally got on a flight to the U.S.
“We were driving all day, non-stop, no toilet, no food, no water, just driving fast to get to a safe area,” Chuba said immediately after landing.
The family is staying with friends in Los Angeles, but Chuba’s husband, father and grandmother are still in the country.
“It looks like hell. There is bombing, gunshots, buildings are destroyed, a lot of people are dead. A lot of my friends don’t have houses and apartments, they just don’t know where to live,” Chuba said.
Despite the destruction, she said she would have stayed in Ukraine, but decided she needed to protect Sasha.
“I came here to protect her, not me. It’s because of her we are here," she said.
A week after their arrival, Chuba said she was still in disbelief.
“I feel nothing right now, just nothing. It just hurts. I’m afraid for my family and friends. I don’t know what to do here. I have nothing here,” she said.
Because Chuba is not a citizen, she is not able to work and does not know what the next days, months and weeks will look like or how she will support her daughter. She also has no idea when she will be reunited with her family.
They’re in regular contact via messaging apps.
“I’m just praying that every time I call them they will answer me,” Chuba said.
She misses her home and life in Ukraine, but said she’s grateful Sasha is safe.
“She knows there is a war in Ukraine, she’s asking questions about her dad, her grandfather, why they aren’t with us. So I tell her that as soon as we can, she will go back and we will see them, that’s all I can do,” she said.