There is only one subject on our lips this week and we deal with it in our own way. Some will not turn the news on and ignore all information about the war on the internet. The opinions of others from politicians down are often not trusted. Brexit and Covid has taught has a disrespect for the words which come tumbling out of the mouths of politicians. We try to look for news sources which are credible and photographs which are not fake. ‘Fake News’ cried Trump on a daily basis and now we are all filtering everything through the ‘fake news’ sieve.
Conspiracy theorists are emerging and complicating things further. The evidence of real time reporting is there for all to see. Never has there been a war with so much filmed evidence on phones and other equipment. The heartbreak of people trying to get away in whatever means they can is beyond our comprehension.
Meanwhile, on small island Mallorca what are we doing? We get up in the morning and try to live our best lives. Children go to school, people go to work and the tourism season begins to wake. Yes, there is rationing on sunflower oil in the shops. That sunny flower, a symbol of hope in Ukraine, is one of their biggest exports and supplies us with sunflower oil.
The volunteer effort is in overdrive with organisations, churches and individuals turning up at the Ukrainian Church and other centres with donated goods. A bit of a mixed bag of information as edicts from the authorities said that goods were impossible to move and financial donations were preferable.
The information from the Ukrainian Church tells a different story and has a list of items they actually want. Everyone has to do what is right for the way they want to give. Many want to drive to a centre and donate as it gives them a solidarity with the cause that a financial bank transfer doesn’t. Many have no money to give but want to do what they can.
The Ukrainian Church has moved its collection centre to the Son Castello Industrial Estate and will no longer be taking donations at the Church. The new centre will be at C/Gremi Picapedrers 1, Poligono Son Castello. It is the Fire Station. They are open every day from 9 am to 8 pm. Alternatively for financial donations use IBAN ES07 2100 6805 9302 0006 6471 The name of the account is the Asociación de Ayuda a Ucrania.
Humans of Mallorca are grateful they are not currently living the life of those in Ukraine, Russia or any of the surrounding areas living out a humanitarian crisis. People arriving here from the Ukraine are welcomed and looked after in hostels and hotels. Some of them have family already here and they join them. Women and children on the move with terror in their hearts will find refuge here.
We live through the first days and weeks of this crisis with no knowledge of what happens next. The job of Government is to be part of the worldwide conversation and take appropriate decisions. The job of the rest of us is to get on with our lives as normally as we can and help as we are able. We won’t complain about the lack of sunflower oil on the shelves and we will work in all the ways available to us for the relief effort. Some will join the peace marches planned in Palma this weekend and make their voices heard.
Humans of Mallorca prove time and time again that they are willing to help in emergencies. The relief effort needed is so huge that much will be asked of the whole of Europe. The acceptance of this concept is the first big milestone. This is patently not a quick fix situation and will be with us for years to come. The eventual rebuilding of much of the Ukraine will take time and stop so many from returning home in the short term.
All communities need to understand that their welcome has to be constant, as these people have left their beloved country, because of a war they had no control over.
Humans of Mallorca we salute you and the work you are doing now for Ukraine and the work you will continue to do for months ahead.
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