Ukrainian Story - Ratcliffe College

Ukrainian Story

| 21.08.2023

I was delighted to meet with two of the four Ukrainian girls that donor funds have supported to come and study here at Ratcliffe. I was immediately warmly welcomed into their “home” (the Girls’ Boarding house) and they were happy and excited to talk to me, have their photograph taken and share their experiences.

We spoke in the common room which is in the heart of Girls’ Boarding House. Daria and Sofiia came across to me as very sensible, intelligent, and confident young people and yet they had a kind warmth to them, and I could see they were comfortable in their surroundings, and they have settled in well.

Both have come from cities in Ukraine, Sofiia told me she left a town with ongoing conflict. She revealed that keeping up with daily news used to be distressing, but she has told me she tries not to look so often now. Despite the challenging circumstances, both Daria and Sofiia maintain regular communication with their families, who have mostly relocated outside of Ukraine. They look forward to visiting their loved ones during holidays.

When asked about their time at Ratcliffe College, they told me they were finding it a great experience; the teachers were very knowledgeable and supportive, and they never felt alone. They said they had made a lot of great friends already and the best thing for them is when they go on boarding trips, (especially Alton
Towers), as they explained that they see other friends who can go home often, but they cannot, so being able to go and visit new places is really exciting.

Right now, they are working hard to revise for their Year 12 examinations and have aspirations, post- Ratcliffe, to complete their studies in Higher Education in the UK or elsewhere in Europe.

Both Daria and Sofiia wanted to express their gratitude to everyone who has supported their time here, saying:“We want to say a big thank you. Without this opportunity, we would not have been able to come and study here in the UK. We are really, really thankful.”