Dwindling campus interest on Ukraine

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By Sam Kirk
November 15, 2022

Ukrainian flag outside of St. Peter and Paul's Ukrainian church. Photo by Thomas Ryan.
Ukrainian flag outside of St. Peter and Paul's Ukrainian church. Photo by Thomas Ryan.

Many people are losing interest in the invasion of Ukraine that started in late February 2022. Reports show that since April 2022, the plummeting number of Google trend searches for the words “Kyiv” and “nuclear” show the declining interest among people worldwide.

“As the war continues, more people are just assuming it is over and done with since it is not on the front pages of the news anymore,” Veronica Charyna, sophomore chemistry major, said.

Charyna’s family is Ukrainian, and she has relatives currently fighting on the war’s front lines. “I have several cousins and an uncle who are fighting who live outside the city of Lviv in western Ukraine near the Polish border,” she said.

On the ground in Ukraine

The unprovoked Russian attacks on Ukraine have caused horrific problems for the country. Not only has the war crumbled its economy, but thousands of soldiers and civilians have been killed due to the many bombs that have been dropped throughout its cities.

St. Peter and Paul’s Ukrainian church in Bridgeport Pennsylvania. Photo by Thomas Ryan.

Recent Russian attacks targeted civilian infrastructure, resulting in electrical lines going out. More than half the population has had no access to electricity for days at a time. The Russian military targeted energy and water infrastructures that have deeply affected civilians still in the area.

Russian President Vladimir Putin and the Russian soldiers forged a drone alliance providing a significant boost to Russia’s air strike capabilities. They have already utilized these drones to do as much damage as possible to Ukrainian infrastructure.

Many expected that at the beginning of the war, Ukraine’s capital, Kyiv, would fall within days, and Ukraine’s president, Volodymyr Zelenskyy, would be overthrown. Nevertheless, Ukrainian forces worked hard to defend their nation. From Feb. 24 to Oct. 2, 2022, a record 15,246 civilians were killed or injured by the Russian attacks on Ukraine. Both sides of the military forces have taken heavy losses as well. About 25,000 Russian soldiers and 9,000 Ukrainian soldiers were killed in action. Ukraine has lost about 20% of its land but continues fighting to regain them. The war has already cost at least $113.5 billion and will cost even more to rebuild the country.

What can Cabrini do?

The community here at Cabrini seems to have lost interest in this story. Last year, at the beginning of the war, Cabrini held a prayer service in the campus’ chapel. Besides that, there has not been much of an effort to promote fundraisers or anything for those who need help.

“There should be more of an effort by Cabrini’s community to raise awareness of how we can support those in Ukraine,” Wyatt Haney, sophomore finance major, said.

Pathway of Cabrini outside of Iadarola building. Photo by Sam Kirk.

The Center on Immigration at Cabrini sticks to their mission of promoting immigrant justice through advocacy, education, and research. “We have organized a round table for raising awareness in our community about the war and the situation in Spring 2022,” Interim Director of the program Dr. Nune Grigoryan, said.

There are many relief fundraisers looking for donors to support families affected by the war.

Lots of fundraising has been done through the Tryzub. “The Ukrainian American Sports Center in Hosham has had summer picnics where a percentage of the profits went to the victims and the Ukrainian educational and cultural center who have hosted dinners, fairs, and other activities to raise money,” said Charyna.

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Sam Kirk

My name is Samuel Kirk, and I am currently a junior at Cabrini University. I am also a member of the men’s lacrosse team. I am currently majoring in digital communications and adding a minor in marketing as well. I was born in Bryn Marr hospital on January 1, 2002. A fun fact Is that I was the first newborn baby to be born in that hospital during that year. I grew up in Phoenixville, PA with my brother, sister and parents. When I was younger, I enjoyed playing soccer, have since moved on to basketball and lacrosse.

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