Dima is a 19-year-old from Zaporojie. He considers himself a lucky person. When the war started, he was in Zhytomyr. There he training together with the national volleyball team (U21) of Ukraine, of which he was part. Shortly after that, he came to Poland, to Toruń, with the volleyball team to participate in a championship. From here, says Dima, everyone could choose whether to return to Ukraine or stay in Poland. He chose to stay. At the urging of a coach, he got on the bus and came alone to this Refugee Center. When he arrived in the center in Proszowice, there were already 80 people living there, mostly children and mothers. After a month, his mother and his 11-year-old sister, Kateryna, also came here. Father stayed in Ukraine with his grandparents. His father is fine, or at least that's what he tells him, when they talk.
Dima says that he and Ukrainian people didn't want this war, that it is terribly difficult for those who fight on the front line. Says that the war hurts everyone, both those at home. in Ukraine and those who have left the country. Like all young people here, Dima talks a little about his past and more about his future. Although he misses his home, friends and teammates, he says that he is happy here, that he is concentrating on his studies and his sports career. Now he plays for the Krakow volleyball team. Daily training helps him not to think about the war and to be able to look towards the future with optimism and hope. His mother found a job, his sister goes to school and has also taken up volleyball. His greatest wish is for the war to end and to be able to return home.
Albina is 20 years old and she is also from Zaporojie. She is Dima's girlfriend. They met in Ukraine, in their hometown. Albina is a basketball player and a graduate of the physical education and sports college. This, she hopes, will help her find a job as a sports teacher in a primary school.
A month after the invasion, Albina left with her grandmother for Lviv, where, with the help of American volunteers, she managed to cross the border and reach Poland. Her parents are at home, in Zaporojie. The father cannot leave the country and her mother did not want to leave him alone.
She says that sport saves them, keeps their thoughts away from the war and makes them look more optimistic towards the future.
Now she lives in a room without windows, together with her boyfriend Dima, his mother and sister, but she says she is happy and feels safe. Like all the young people here, she wants the war to end quickly. He wants to return to Ukraine, to her family, to her friends, to the life she had before the war.