From the 14th – 15th November 2023, a group of colleagues representing multiple departments from Hyve’s London office, travelled to Warsaw to support Rebuild Ukraine – an event that aims to provide a platform to bring people together with the ultimate goal of rebuilding Ukraine's war-torn economy with an emphasis on infrastructure, industry, energy, and housing. While in Ukraine the team also visited a refugee centre for those effected by the Ukraine and Russia conflict.
Since the management buyout last year of the Ukraine business, Premier Expo, Anatoly Sushon (who used to head up Hyve’s Ukraine office) has led the team to create this important event, which is motivated by rebuilding schools, hospitals, offices, homes, communities, and getting Ukraine back to business.
The Hyve team joined the incredible Premier Expo team onsite to support with the registration process, badge collection and the management of the VIP lounges and content theatres.
It was fantastic to see the event in person and be part of a such an important initiative. To Anatoly, and the amazing Premier Expo team, thank you for having us! We are profoundly grateful to be able to have been a part of this event and helping you to drive meaningful change.
Nico Stanford, Senior Sales Manager from Olympia London also joined the Hyve team on the trip and upon returning he shared his reflections:
For the second part of the trip, the team travelled to the Caritas Centre in Urle, a comprehensive recreational, educational, rehabilitation and retreat centre. Since February 2022 the centre has transformed significantly to be able to house approximately 60 Ukrainian refugees who have been displaced due to the ongoing conflict, and since making this shift it has housed and supported over 3,000 Ukrainian people.
On arrival, the manager of the centre Woldark took us on a tour of the accommodation and facilities and gave us insight into the everyday operations that occur. After the tour, we had the opportunity to sit down with a group of refugees who were living there. Although there was a language barrier, we had the invaluable help of our colleague, Anna Vyshnevska who was able to translate for those who wanted to share their stories. It was incredibly harrowing, yet eye-opening to listen to these brave people give us a chilling reality into what they have experienced, and what had led them to be at the centre.
Though our words, nor actions could relieve their pain, I can speak on behalf of the entire group when I say we were truly grateful and inspired by the courage and hospitality of every person we met that day. A huge thank you to Woldark and his team, for their commitment, kind nature, and generosity towards these people.
Following the sit-down, the group split into two and got started on tasks such as raking the leaves around the grounds, and reorganising their inventory of bedding, towels, and blankets.
When the children returned from school, we were able to use the centre’s sports hall to run a games session. We all took part in a mixture of games and races, and it was truly heartwarming to see the children with big smiles on their faces enjoying our company.
After we had all worked up an appetite, we returned to the dining room to make pizzas (from scratch!). The children were brilliant in making the dough, cutting toppings, and working together to provide a banquet of pizzas for all involved. Their behaviour and kind nature throughout the day was truly inspiring and encapsulates the resilience and fellowship of the Ukrainian people.
I am incredibly proud to have been a part of the trip, and it has been extremely thought provoking. It demonstrated that powerful things really can happen when people come together over a shared purpose.
We’re looking forward to staying in contact with the people we met, and supporting further where we can. A big thank you to Alexandra Archer, Anna Vyshnevska, Bettina Achim, Chloe Abbott, Eleanor Kingham, Hannah Gilding, Hannah Thomson, Jessie Dewick, and Nico Stanford (Olympia London) for all of your support and engagement on this trip and thank you to Hyve for funding it. And a special thank you goes to Stuart Thomas for masterminding the entire trip and making it possible.