“I want to return to my father,” Mila, a 7-year-old Ukrainian girl on Saturday told the the First Lady of the United States who described the words as “heartbreaking “.
Jill Biden, accompanied by the wife of the President of Romania, Carmen Iohannis, visited the “Uruguay” Secondary School in district 1 of the Bucharest, a Romanian public school that has opened its classrooms to Ukrainian refugee students.
Dr. Biden spoke with Ukrainian and Romanian educators and met with Ukrainian refugee students and Romanian students in classroom settings.
Afterwards, Dr. Biden participated in a listening session with Ukrainian educators and mothers.
“We wake up every morning and think ‘this has to end’ but it still keeps going on and on”.
The mothers from Ukraine explained to the two ladies the hardships they went through from the beginning of the war until their arrival in Romania, but also about the help they received from the Romanian people.
The talks focused mainly on the need for children from Romania’s neighbouring country to learn in Ukrainian language.
One of the teachers explained that an educational space for Ukrainian children has been set up at the “Uruguay” Secondary School, as part of a larger project designed to provide financial support, accommodation and medical care to mothers.
“My project came out of fear. I was just thinking how to save my child. We thank the Romanian people for being with us, they helped us so much. The Romanians did so much volunteering that not even Romania expected it to see that much hospitality. And I saw these children that are now in a safe place. I came here on March 1st and no one had heard of this educational project. People had other worries. I went to the Ukrainian Embassy and they didn’t have any time for me. I went to the Bucharest Nord Railway Station and I started shouting that I’m a teacher and I can take care of the children’s education. There was a car there waiting for a train full of people and they told me to stop scaring the people. Then someone else told me that the mayor was organizing a children’s play area, equipped with everything they needed. We were told that they could give us some classrooms for the children. I want to thank the Romanian people for what they did for us,” another Ukrainian teacher said.
Another woman from Ukraine said she was positively shocked by the behaviour and warm welcome she and her children received in Romania.
“I think you’re the amazing ones, aren’t you? I told you this at lunch, how amazing you are!” Jill Biden addressed the mothers in Ukraine.
“I am grateful to know that the Romanian people have taken these families into their homes and into their hearts,” said the First Lady of the United States.
Jill Biden and Carmen Iohannis previously visited two classrooms. In the first, preschoolers and primary school students cut out small pieces of paper or a “friendship tree” in the colours of the Ukrainian flag.
In the other classrooms, older children made puzzles. The groups of pupils were coordinated by a Romanian and a Ukrainian teacher.
“To my fellow teacher and First Lady, thank you for an afternoon in Romania full of compassion and hope. Not only do we share a love for our students, but we stand united in our support for the Ukrainian people,” Jill Biden stated at the end of the visit to the “Uruguay” Secondary School.
“Today I had the honor and joy of receiving the visit of the First Lady of the United States, Dr. Biden, an occasion that demonstrated that Respect, Care for the soul and Communication have no borders!,” the wife of the President of Romania, Carmen Iohannis wrote on her Facebook account.
The First Lady of the United States of America arrived in Romania on Friday, at the Mihail Kogălniceanu Air Base, where she met with the US and NATO troops.
Her visit to Romania was part of a four-day trip she makes to our country and Slovakia to emphasize the United States’ commitment to Ukrainian refugees.
The US president’s wife wrote on Twitter that the purpose of her trip to the two states was to “spend Mother’s Day with Ukrainian mothers and children who were forced to flee their homes because of Putin’s war.”
“I will also visit American troops and express my gratitude for their efforts to help Ukraine’s neighbouring countries and the humanitarian workers,” added Jill Biden.
EduMin Cimpeanu mentions US First Lady’s appreciation for Romanian teachers and pupils
The Minister of Education, Sorin Cimpeanu, voiced his satisfaction for the manner in which the US First Lady Jill Biden and Romanian President’s wife, Carmen Iohannis, appreciated the Romanian teachers and pupils, on the occasion of their visit on Saturday to the “Uruguay” Secondary School in district 1 of the Capital City Bucharest.
“The First Lady of the United States of America, Jill Biden, and the first lady of Romania, Carmen Iohannis, have visited the” Uruguay” Secondary School, a public school that hosts refugee pupils from Ukraine. I enjoyed the appreciation for the teachers and Romanian pupils who showed solidarity, giving their Ukrainian classmates a sense of warmth, normalcy and stability, I also enjoyed the appreciation of the “Educated Romania” project, a country project that aims primarily at quality and fairness in education, a project that can be facilitated and offered a more effective support for refugee children in Ukraine,” the Minister wrote on Facebook.
He also thanked the Romanian teachers and pupils and added that he appreciated the efforts of the Ukrainian volunteer teachers, as well as the efforts of the organizations that were involved in receiving the Ukrainian children.
Compiled from Agerpres
Photo: Facebook/U.S. Embassy Bucharest