GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) — East Carolina University is standing with Ukraine.
The Global Affairs Department held a virtual conversation with students from Ivan Franko International University on Tuesday. Many of the students are currently in the western part of Ukraine, which they said is relatively safe. They say they’re devastated for their country, but are thankful for the outpouring of support from around the world.
“The concrete of buildings, bridges and airports didn’t stand, but Ukraine will definitely stand,” said one Ukrainian student, whose names we are not releasing to protect their identity.
Students from Lviv, Ukraine are experiencing firsthand the devastation of war.
“More than 1,500 residential buildings are daily hit by missiles,” said another Ukrainian student. “They are destroyed. More than 34 hospitals are destroyed. Metro stations in the country work like shelters. There are thousands of people hiding in them.”
Even so, these students said they’re proud to be from Ukraine.
“People and especially Ukrainians are stronger than you really think because we have overcome a lot of difficulties,” said a female student.
Students said the atrocities of the invasion are very real.
“You need to understand how desperate we are because people die in most disgusting and devastating ways,” said one student.
For some, it’s hard to imagine a future.
“We are not sure whether we are gonna be alive tomorrow and it’s really depressing,” said a Ukrainian student.
That hit home with some ECU students, who attended the discussion.
“The thing that will stick with me the longest is when they said that they aren’t thinking about their futures in the long term,” said Grace Gardner, a junior at ECU. “They’re thinking about the next two hours and whether or not they’re going to make it through that.”
But the students said they’re holding onto hope and praying for peace.
“I believe we are gonna be happy one day, but for now all the plans I’ve been making for the next week, for the next summer, it all doesn’t matter,” said one student. “All I want for this nightmare is to end as soon as possible.”
Students said besides donating money, you can also help by posting accurate information on your social media platforms. They said President Vladmir Putin is spreading damaging and dangerous misinformation.