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Web Radio Station Helps Ukrainian Refugees Adapt in Prague

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A brand new Prague-based web radio station has began to broadcast information, info and music tailor-made to the day-to-day considerations of some 300,000 refugees who’ve arrived within the Czech Republic since Russia launched its army assault in opposition to Ukraine.

In a studio on the coronary heart of the Czech capital, radio veterans work along with absolute freshmen to supply the refugees with what they should know to settle as easily as attainable in a brand new nation.

The employees of 10 combines individuals who have fled Ukraine in latest weeks with those that have been residing overseas for years. Regardless of who they’re, their widespread objective is to assist fellow Ukrainians and their homeland dealing with the brutal Russian invasion.

Natalia Churikova, an skilled journalist with Prague-based Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty stated she could not say no to a suggestion to grow to be the broadcaster’s editor-in-chief.

“It was for my folks, for individuals who actually wanted assist, who actually wanted assist, one thing that may assist them begin a brand new reside or restart their lives right here after they’ve lived by very dangerous issues attempting to flee from Ukraine,” Churikova stated.

Staffer Sofia Tatomyr is a type of who left to flee the battle. The 22-year-old from the western city of Kalush was planning to maneuver to a different metropolis in Ukraine when a pal known as one morning: “Sofia, the battle has simply begun.”

Her dad and mom and older brother opted to remain residence, however they needed her to affix her aunt in Prague.

“It occurred impulsively,” she stated. She boarded a bus alone in Cherniutsi and arrived 28 hours later within the Czech capital, a metropolis she’d by no means visited.

“After I was already overseas, I bear in mind the second that I used to be crying and I used to be attempting to purchase a ticket and I could not spell what ticket I want. It was actually troublesome,” she stated.

Tatomyr labored as graphic designer and singer in Ukraine after getting a level as a writer and media editor. Radio broadcasting was a part of her programs on the college. To her shock, her aunt’s brother discovered an announcement about jobs for a brand new Ukrainian radio station.

She stated she wanted “a while to grasp that not all people may be on the frontline on the battle and all people has to do what she or he can do the perfect.”

“So that is how I am cheering myself up that I am doing my occupation, that I am doing what I can do the perfect, and that is the easiest way I will help our folks, I will help Ukraine. That is how I am fascinated by it,“ she stated.

Protected in Prague, she was nonetheless attempting to return to phrases with the invasion of her homeland.

“It is horrible,” she stated. “I can not nonetheless discover any logical clarification for what they’re doing and why they’re doing it. Within the twenty first century, a battle? Why? We have been a peaceable nation residing simply our lives.”

One other announcer, Marharyta Golobrodska, was working as a copywriter for a software program firm when she acquired a name from Churikova, whom she knew from an internship at Radio Free Europe.

“I used to think about those that rise up early to be able to work from 6am loopy, however that is what I do now and I completely take pleasure in it,” Golobrodska stated. “That is what I all the time needed to do, to be useful for my nation, despite the fact that I reside so far-off.”

For 12 hours every weekday — and 11 hours on weekends — Radio Ukraine performs Ukrainian and western music whereas presenting information of Ukraine and the Czech Republic along with info for refugees each quarter-hour. It consists of particulars about the place they will get the paperwork they want from native authorities, how you can get a job or medical remedy, or how you can discover a place for youngsters at colleges. Youngsters can hearken to Ukrainian fairy tales.

A local of the southern metropolis of Mykolaiv, Golobrodska has lived within the Czech Republic for eight-and-a-half years. After the invasion, she travelled to western Ukraine to satisfy her mom and 9-year-old sister and drive them to security. In Prague, she bought them concerned in her broadcast.

“My mum, for instance, informed me she’d like to listen to what she’s not imagined to do right here. For instance, that she will’t park the automotive wherever she needs to love in Ukraine,” she stated.

Bohemia Media, which operates a number of radio stations within the Czech Republic, got here up with the concept to launch the station. It supplied a studio and its folks cooperated with the Ukrainian embassy, the native Ukrainian neighborhood and others to make it actuality in three weeks. It additionally covers the salaries.

Lukas Nadvornik, the proprietor of the Mediapark, an organization that represents Bohemia Media, stated the plan is for the station to stay on air so long as it is wanted. The important thing activity for now’s to let know as many potential listeners as attainable about its existence.

Considered one of them is Sophia Medvedeva. The 23-year previous net designer could not maintain again tears as she talked concerning the latest six-day drive together with her mom and youthful brother from Mykolaiv to Krakow, Poland.

However in Prague, she joined her fiancé and Radio Ukraine helped her adapt to a brand new life. “I am so amazed concerning the probability to hearken to Ukrainian music after I’m not in my homeland. I really feel that I am not alone,” she stated. Her solely suggestion for it’s to ask a psychologist to “advise the Ukrainian refugees about how you can combat the survivor syndrome and how you can combat despair.”


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