A trio of Black women have come together to aid African students stuck in Ukraine and dealing with racist mistreatment during Russia’s invasion of the European nation.
According to Sky News, Korrine Sky, one of the three women, was a student who successfully fled Ukraine after an intense journey last week. She had been studying in the city of Dnipro when Russia invaded.
Sky also documented her journey as she and other Black students attempted to flee with added difficulty, because of their race.
29-year-old London-native Patricia Daley and her friend, 40-year-old Tokunbo Koiki, then learned of Sky’s struggle through social media and reached out to offer help. Together, the trio organized a campaign to aid students of color who were facing racist opposition from Ukranian authorities attempting to prevent them from safely crossing the border.
Speaking with Sky News, the three women say they’ve helped over 500 students successfully flee Ukraine through “funding transport costs, like arranging taxis and other emergency needs.”
“People said they were pushed, sent back, and physically assaulted on both sides of the border in Ukraine, Romania, and Poland,” Koiki said.
Daley said students who reached out detailed the racism they experienced while trying to seek safety. Some even reported lines that were segregated for Ukrainians and non-white people.
NBC News reports there have been videos circulating showing Ukrainian officials threatening to shoot groups of African students for trying to board modes of transportation to safely flee the country. Other videos show a woman shielding an infant from the cold and officials chasing groups of Black people.
By Paul Meara