RATHER THAN sit around watching the terrible progression of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and waiting for the awful news that seems all but inevitable, we’re keeping ourselves busy with work as the distraction of choice. It’s also made us realise that we’ve haven’t had a chance to visit any places in Eastern Europe yet, despite the fact one of our writers was from Ukraine and another was from Romania. So we began researching Kyiv and discovered a thriving city with coffee shops and ramen noodle houses, beautiful cobbled streets and lovely architecture, gastro pubs and sushi⏤a place much like here, and one that we hope we’ll have the chance to visit one day.
Located in north-central Ukraine along the Dnieper River, Kyiv (/kiːv/ KEEV) is the capital and most populous city of Ukraine, with nearly three million people. It is also one of the oldest cities in Eastern Europe and an important industrial, scientific, educational, and cultural centre, with many high-tech industries, higher education institutions and historical landmarks. The city has an extensive system of public transport and infrastructure, including the Kyiv Metro. Here, we’re giving you a glimpse before all the destruction, through the eyes of Darina Gritsenko (@darinagritsenko), a Ukrainian French language tutor currently living in Paris. There are quiches at coffee houses and grand buildings reaching up to the winter skies; red telephone booths and towering cathedrals, caffe lattes and croissants…
Ways you can help
Médecins Sans Frontières – (Doctors Without Borders) is an international, medical humanitarian organisation working in more than 70 countries around the world. Their medical teams act fast to save people’s lives in conflict zones, natural disasters and epidemics. They go where they are needed most / DONATE HERE
UNHCR – is the UN Refugee Agency and a global organisation working to save lives, protect rights and build a better future for refugees, internally displaced communities and stateless people. They work to ensure that everybody has the right to seek asylum and find refuge from violence or persecution / DONATE HERE
Save the Children – has been in operation for over a hundred years and operate in over a hundred countries. They are distributing essential supplies and winter kits of clothing and blankets as temperatures plunge below freezing; providing cash and vouchers assistance to families to meet basic needs like food, rent and medicines; offering vital mental health and psychosocial support to children and their families / DONATE HERE (UK) / DONATE HERE (US)
The Kyiv Independent – a new publication in the making, created by the former editorial team of the Kyiv Post— 30 journalists and editors who were fired by the newspaper’s owner for defending editorial independence. They have launched The Kyiv Independent because “Ukraine needs on-the-ground English-language journalism of the highest quality and our community needs a news source it can trust.” / DONATE HERE
Razom – means “together” in Ukrainian, and the organisation works toward unlocking the potential of Ukraine by “creating spaces where people meet, partner and do”. Razom was born out of the Revolution of Dignity in 2014 when millions of people worked together and risked their lives to build a pathway to a better future for Ukraine. Maidan successfully cleared the path for new leadership and reforms, and inspired countless citizens to get involved in the process / DONATE HERE
Revived Soldiers Ukraine – (RSU) is a non-profit organisation dedicated to providing aid to the people of Ukraine so that they may fulfil fundamental rights and freedoms such as right to life, right to appropriate and affordable medical care, freedom of belief and freedom for an adequate standard of living / DONATE HERE
The Ukrainian name Ки́їв, written in the Ukrainian Cyrillic alphabet, rendered in Latin letters (or romanised) is Kyiv. The name comes from Old East Slavic Kyjevŭ (Kыѥвъ), most likely derived from the Proto-Slavic name *Kyjevŭ gordŭ (which literally means “Kyi’s castle”), and is associated with Kyi (Ukrainian: Кий), the legendary founder of the city. Kyiv is the official Ukrainian name for the city, and used for legislative and official acts. Kiev is the traditional English name for the city, but because of its historical derivation from the Russian name Киев, it became disfavoured by many English-language media outlets following the Russo-Ukrainian War. Now more than ever, it is important to refer to the city as Kyiv.