Irina, Marina, and Katia are a grandmother, mother, and granddaughter originally from Mikolaiv, southern Ukraine. They had to flee their city of origin due to the dangerous war with Russia and now find themselves in exile together in Austria. The Ukrainian authorities are concerned about the potential demographic challenge they could face in the coming years if refugees do not return to their homeland. The director of UNHCR in Europe highlights the efforts to maintain contact with the Ukrainian population, such as online courses for students and opportunities for refugees to travel back and forth.
Marina, 43, found a job in a supermarket and worked her way up from the bakery department to become head cashier. Her daughter, Katia, 17, is studying remotely at a Viennese high school with the goal of obtaining the Austrian high school diploma in 2025. Irina, the 64-year-old grandmother, has dedicated herself to volleyball and has formed a circle of friends. The three women have worked hard to integrate into the local community, finding an apartment and making the most of their new lives in Austria.
While many Ukrainian refugees are building their future in their host countries, the situation is complicated for women whose husbands are on the front lines. As the conflict drags on, there is concern about the long-term impact on communities hosting refugees who may have been forced to leave everything behind. In neighboring Germany