Refugee Week

“Living a normal life is my freedom.”

I am a university medical graduate and one have one year experience practicing medicine.

Life changed when we started to experience regular bombings in Lviv, the city I lived in. I could not go out and feel safe. We all had an app on our mobile phones which warned us of any possible air strikes.

When war was waged in Ukraine, life stopped. We did not know what tomorrow would look like. When the siren app warned us, we ran for safety and looked for shelter.

I am happy in Australia. Life is normal here. Living a normal life is my freedom.

I appreciate peace of mind and do not take that for granted. I can go for a walk in the street or shop in the market without the fear of bombs exploding around me.

In Australia, I have to start my life from scratch. I have to study and to find work, but it is worth it because its peaceful here. As a child, I wanted to become a doctor. I want to study medicine again or graphic design.

What I like about Australia is that people are relaxed, polite and welcoming. They do not judge me for my language and background, or refugee status. They treat me as part of the community, not a stranger.

I still have the siren app on my mobile phone. When it goes off, I call my family members in Ukraine to see if they are fine. As refugees, this is our life and Australians probably do not know that this is how we live. 

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