Prince Rupert nurse Iryna Levkovytska, seen in a 2018 photo, stood all day on March 10, in a line of more than 1000 women and children at the Ukrainian Embassy in Poland trying to obtain passports and travel documents for her sister’s children. (Photo: Supplied)

Prince Rupert nurse Iryna Levkovytska, seen in a 2018 photo, stood all day on March 10, in a line of more than 1000 women and children at the Ukrainian Embassy in Poland trying to obtain passports and travel documents for her sister’s children. (Photo: Supplied)

Prince Rupert nurse stands in line for hours at packed Ukrainian Embassy

Iryna Levkovytska landed in Poland on March 8 to save her family

A Prince Rupert nurse who flew to Poland to help save her family in conflict-ravaged Ukraine landed in Warsaw after an emotional flight, her husband Anatolii Levkovytskyi said, on March 8.

Levkovytskyi told The Northern View, his wife, Iryna Levkovytska described the capital city as so busy and packed with refugees that even a taxi is unobtainable. More than 2.5 million people have fled Ukraine amid the Russian invasion.

The nurse spent all day March 10 in a line of more than 2,000 at the Ukrainian embassy in Poland, trying to obtain travel documents for her sister’s children who do not have passports. The majority of those in line at the Ukrainian Embassy are women and children. Next, she will need to utilize the Canadian Embassy for proper visas for the family to enter Canada.

Warsaw is so congested with refugees and people that Levkovytska is worried her hotel room booking will not be extended past the initial six-day reservation because accommodation is sparse in the city.

A FreeFunder campaign has been set up to assist the Ukrainian couple, who made Prince Rupert home five years ago and are now headed to the war-torn country to save their family members and ensure their safety. As of March 11, just less than $7,000 had been raised out of a $10,000 goal.

“This fundraiser is to help bring my family home from Ukraine and to help buy supplies and medications for those in my family who remain in Ukraine,” Iryna, a Prince Rupert Regional Hospital, nurse stated.

“My Mom, my sister, her three children, and my husband’s brothers’ families remain in Ukraine. Every day it is becoming more and more dangerous for them to stay there. Supplies are running out, no medications,” she said on the funding page.

Her sister and three children escaped the conflict and fled across the Ukrainian border on March 3. The intent is to bring back the family to Canada as soon as refugee or immigration documentation is processed. After arriving in Poland, Levkovytska has been reunited with her sister, who is staying with her and the children in a Warsaw hotel.

“Sadly, my mother is not able to leave due to health issues, and my husband’s brothers are staying to fight as they are conscripted to do so,” she said.

Anatolii’s older brother is fighting on the front lines with the Ukraine Territorial Defence Forces (UTDF) in Khmelnytskyy, a city with a regular population of 300,000. The UTDF is an organization of civilians defending their cities and homes. They are fighting among destroyed buildings and cement rubble. They are fighting with sheer determination and will, he said.

In a March 11 update, Levkovytskyi said with each Russian action against the city his brothers and UTFF become stronger in their tactics and practices.

“It’s not military. The Territory Defence is basically neighbours — they organize small groups of men. They don’t have the proper equipment. They don’t have helmets. They don’t have bulletproof vests,” he explained. “Yes, they have guns, but they don’t have any training. They will fight against regular forces, and they will stay to fight.”

However, he said his senior citizen parents still are adamant they will not leave their home regardless of what transpires.

To donate, click on the FreeFunder fundraising campaign or e-transfer to ilevkovytska@yahoo.com

City of Prince RupertUkraine