Above: Arina & Kiril,
Year 6 siblings, students and refugees from Kyiv, Ukraine loving their new
school in Australia.
Kiril and Arina are twin siblings in Year 6 who are all smiles as they are surrounded by new friends and enjoying their studies at their new school, Southern Cross College Redcliffe. However, for these students, there is also hope to be reunited with their father and uncle, currently fighting in the Ukraine war.
They were able to bravely flee Kyiv not long after the war started, thanks to their Aunty Olena and Uncle Nick who quickly fundraised enough to meet them in Poland, helping them to cross the border with the aid of humanitarian organisations such as the Vidler Family Foundation. Kiril and Arina escaped with their mother, aunts, uncle and cousin.
“It was intense," says Olena
“Getting them across the border was difficult. My brother and I were so happy to see them make it across the border, but they only had the clothes on their back."
Since coming to Australia, the twins have been embraced by the Redcliffe and Southern Cross College community. Kiril and Arina were offered a full scholarship and have been given the chance to work on healing their wounds, as they work towards a better future.
“They love going to school and they love Australia." Olena said.
“Kiril and Arina tell me they love their teacher and everyone has been really lovely and helpful. They only come home wishing they could understand and speak English better to better communicate with friends but they're working on it!
“Maths is their favourite because they're quite good at it and don't need to know too much English. They have even been helping other students in Maths and as students use laptops at Southern Cross College, they can use Google Translate to communicate in class."
Above: Arina &
Kiril with new friends at Southern Cross Catholic College Redcliffe.
Brisbane Catholic Education wishes them the best for their future and prays for the safety of their loved ones in Ukraine.
Brisbane Catholic Education Office
2A Burke Street, Woolloongabba Qld 4102 Australia
Turrbal and Yuggera Country
GPO Box 1201 Brisbane 4001 Australia
Phone: (07) 3033 7000
Fax: (07) 3844 5101