Ukraine families: Mum escapes to join daughter in Derby – BBC


By Jennifer Harby
BBC News

A woman who helped her mum escape from the war in Ukraine has said she had a "terrible journey".
Ellie Flinton, from Derby, helped her mum Larysa Kondrashova leave her home in Lviv to join her in the UK where she has lived for several years.
She said her mum, who has mobility issues, was stuck in a five mile (8km) queue of cars and took 52 hours to cross the border into Poland.
Ms Flinton said her mum was "really happy" in the UK.
She said she had contacted her mum – who does not speak English – shortly after the Russian invasion began.
"She said she wasn't leaving," she said. "She was scared to go anywhere.
"She tried to say she would be alright where she was but in Lviv, they don't have bunkers. There is nowhere to go in a war.
"She was nervous because she is not very mobile.
"Normally when she visits, I buy her a special assistance wheelchair and she is taken to the airport so she doesn't need to worry about anything.
"But this time, we couldn't do that and she was panicking.
"The buses were cancelled or full."
After spending an entire day contacting friends in Ukraine, Ms Flinton said her godson's fiancée had agreed to take Ms Kondrashova over the border into Poland where she could get a flight to England.
"It was a terrible journey," she said.
"It took 52 hours to get through the queues. The lady driving the car didn't sleep a second.
"There was no food, because they didn't take anything.
"It was cold in the car and they couldn't use the fuel to warm themselves.
"On Friday, they messaged us after five hours and said they had made 400 metres." [1,312 ft].
Since arriving in the UK on 28 February, Ms Flinton said her mum has retained a positive view on the war.
"I can see she's really happy here," she said.
"Mum said it's a terrible war but she believes in Ukraine will win.
"She has a massive hope. Basically it's all about hope and belief in our people because we are defending our native land, so we are much stronger than the Russians."
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