Unsurrendered: 15 stories of Ukrainians, who fled the war and came to Sweden

April 28, 2024

War breaks life into before and after. Without any notice, it changes plans for the future and turns the ways that sometimes could not have been imagined. We wrote down 15 stories of Ukrainians in Sweden and published them in a book to tell them to as many people as possible. The heroes talk to you in Ukrainian and Swedish in order to avoid the language barrier, which very often interfered in the first days after their arrival in Sweden. With the support of the Ukrainian Cultural Center in Stockholm, on April 28, 2024, we hosted a presentation of the book.

How does one present such personal stories?

How to convey their importance to the future readers?

The art director of the evening, Nata Budarina, successfully managed this task. She combined several stories of the book's characters and performances of talented young artists.

For a while it even seemed that the guests were at a concert in Ukraine. We are so grateful to Tymur Vasylyshyn for singing the song "Chornobryvtsi" and Ivan Polyakov for playing the national anthem of Ukraine.

Larysa Beley moderated this evening and also shared her story. She was born, grew up and worked in Gammalsvenskby in the Kherson region, and came to Sweden after several months of occupation of Kherson.

After the opening words of the authors of the book, Anna Zoteeva and Oksana Basta, the evening continued with the heroines: Inna P., Oksana H., Tetiana S., Tetiana D. and Viktoria E. After reading the excerpts from the book the women added their reflections after two years of living in Sweden, as well as shared their experiences and hopes. It was very emotional and touching but the warm response of the audience helped to soften the heaviness of the moment.

We are incredibly grateful to all our heroes who agreed to put their lives on the pages of the book. Huge thank you goes to Olesya Gordienko and Iryna Horbyk for help with the location and organizational details. Thank you to all the invited guests, partners and journalists who dedicated their time to the event. Thank you to each and every Ukrainian who passed by and stayed to support their compatriots.

We agree with Sven Bergland, the author of one of the comments on the book, who said that the second part of the book should be happy.

If you want to have the book "Unsurrendered: 15 stories of Ukrainians, who fled the war and came to Sweden" on your bookshelf or would like to give it to Swedish or Ukrainian friends, you can place an order on our website.

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