That is why SBA Group and the ambassador of Ukraine in Lithuania invite Ukrainians to meet in Kaunas on 7 May at Vienybės Square for the initiative, „Ukraine – in the Heart of Lithuania.“
A broad community meeting and an afternoon concert by Ukrainian artists will provide an opportunity to meet, talk, make friends and, most importantly, help each other in this difficult time.
„“This horrendous war has brought much grief, uncertainty and destruction to millions of Ukrainians who were forced to flee their homes to save the most precious – health and lives. We are grateful to the Lithuanian people for such a warm welcome and genuine care for our people. Your kindness will forever be in the hearts and thoughts of Ukrainians even generations to come. However, I do not doubt that Ukrainians want to talk to each other, share stories and jointly go through these challenging times. Such initiatives are more necessary than ever, and I hope that the friendship between Ukrainians and Kaunas citizens that might be established next Saturday will remain strong even after our common victory“, – says Ambassador of Ukraine to Lithuania Petro Beshta.
The initiative „Ukraine – in the Heart of Lithuania“ will not only invite participants to meet but also to listen to Ukrainian music talents and enjoy coffee, tea and snacks. Ukrainians from all over Lithuania, as well as our citizens, are invited to the event.
According to the official data of the Department of Statistics, over 7,000 Ukrainians have found refuge in Kaunas alone, but it is estimated that this number could reach 10,000.
„We see the life of Ukrainians in Lithuania from very close – we have welcomed families who have fled the war, we have taken in orphans from Ukrainian orphanages, we have provided the premises of our business centre to a Ukrainian children’s school, and Ukrainians have taken up jobs in our companies across Lithuania.
Initiatives are taking place all over Lithuania, and the events in Ukraine affect us all. That is why we are becoming more empathetic – welcoming people into our homes, sharing what we have, and at the same time rejoicing in every Ukrainian victory, which is also our victory.
This nation, which is very close to us, is in great pain, so the need for mutual emotional support and socialisation is great. With this initiative, we aim to make our country home for our Ukrainian friends, if only for a short time. It is important that they are safe here, that they feel the warmth. This is an event where Ukrainians will feel at home – interacting with their compatriots, listening to their own Ukrainian music – in a relaxed and comfortable atmosphere,“ says Arūnas Martinkevičius, president of the SBA Group.
In addition to emotional support, Ukrainians also feel a great need to receive and share their practical experience of living in Lithuania with each other. Starting with the most important aspects of children’s education and employment and ending with practical issues of everyday life.
The initiative event and concert in Vienybės Square will take place on Saturday, 7 May, starting at 1 pm. During the concert, works by Ukrainian and world masters will be performed by opera soloists and piano virtuosos who fled Kharkiv and settled in Lithuania, and Elizaveta Izmalkova, a student at Vilnius College, and her band will sing Ukrainian songs with a fighting spirit and a heart-warming tone.
Elizaveta is already familiar to Lithuanians, having made a name for herself by performing the famous „Oy u luzi chervona kalyna“ with 300 volunteers at the Town Hall Square. Students from Ukraine from the Herojaus School, located next to Unity Square, are also preparing an exceptional performance for the guests of the event.