“This is our Tania… The wonderful Head of Ivankiv Territorial Community in Kyiv region. At night, in a black kerchief and a mask, she was bringing bread to the elderly and bedridden”
We publish the story about Tetiana Svyrydenko, the Head of the Territorial Community in the Kyiv region, who stayed with her people under Russian occupation since the first day of the war. The story was originally told by Viktoriia Siumar:
On the first day of the war, February 24, 2022, at 10 am, Russian tanks had already entered the villages under the governance of Tetiana Svyrydenko.
People were hiding Tania in different houses. We offered to take her out, but she said: “I will stay with my community.” At night, wearing a black kerchief and mask, she brought bread to the elderly and bedridden.
The most she remembers was the evening when Kadyrov’s representatives were driving along the city streets, being under the influence of drugs and shooting at everyone and everything they saw. At that moment she noticed a girl on the street. Tania managed to fall on her and cover her with her black coat… They [Russians] were shooting only at eye level. That’s how they survived.
Every occupier had a photo of Tania. They were looking for her because they needed a seal with permission to deport people to Belarus and Russia and to hang the Russian flag… In the end, the Russian flag did not appear over the Ivankiv City Council, but on some nights of the occupation, our blue-yellow flag appeared there… And in the morning, it was shot and taken away.
When the occupiers left, Tania was shocked. They didn’t just steal things from her office and make a complete mess there. She found feces on a large plate she once received as a gift… And she still asks one thing: “What kind of ‘offspring’ could do this? Who are they, these creatures?”
Most of all, Tania is happy that during all these days the bread was baked, and the hospital worked in Ivankiv so that the wounded were treated there.