Within a week, our family will welcome our town's first family of Ukrainian war refugees.
The Buianov-Pronich family survived Putin’s original 2014 invasion of their hometown in Donetsk; they fled to Bucha only to survive one of the worst crimes against humanity there, during Putin’s 2022 assault. The couple with their two boys (14 and 3) hid in a basement for weeks with bombs and shelling above, before escaping to a shelter in Germany.
Yanna, Nikita, Volodymyr, and Rinat arrive in our family home on November 30th, where they will have asylum under the US State Department's Humanitarian Parole program for two years. With their first home destroyed and the second abandoned, they will arrive with only what they can carry in their suitcases.
Because they will have no car, the family will be walking to town for supplies. And, until they are permitted to work, they will have almost no resources for those supplies. Additionally, the parents will be attending English classes about 20 minutes by car in one direction and the children will be enrolled in public school about 15 minutes by car in the opposite direction. Any help with transportation, whether by carpools or by an actual donated used car would prove invaluable.
The other obvious expense associated with life on the California coast is the astronomical cost of housing. With this GoFundMe we hope to start a small nest egg toward an apartment application and rental, since the State Department requires that they move toward independence as quickly as possible.
We are beyond words with gratitude in this holiday season for the supportive words and gestures we have received so far. We are very proud of our community's warm welcome for this family, who has survived what nobody should ever have to witness.
Elizabeth, Vinz, and Victoria