Since Thursday, February 24th, at the first hours of the invasion of Russia by the troops sent by Putin, Poland welcomed Ukrainians. The order of the Polish government is clear, any Ukrainian coming to the Polish border will be welcomed in Poland. Poland is the country out of Russia and Belarus sharing the largest border with Ukraine, with more than 500 kilometers.
Since the beginning of the war, more than 4.8 million Ukrainians have been welcomed in Poland and 2,9 came back in Ukraine (17.07.22), the largest through Warsaw. In the Capital, the first train arrived at the first day’s morning (24.02.22), the Mayor of Warsaw, Rafał Trzaskowski decided to introduce free public transport for Ukrainians, more widely, the PKP trains are now free of charge for all Ukrainians throughout Poland. In addition, all institutions of the city are displaying the Ukrainian flag, including public transport, and the town hall. As a symbolic act, the Warsaw City Hall cut all partnerships with Moscow and Russian cities.
Interesting YouTube video about Ukrainian refugee’s life in Poland (July 2022)
In July 2022, the current real estate situation is still complicated, especially in the Capital, but also all over Poland (example: in Kraków or Poznań the population increased by over 20% since the outbreak of the war). Now, more than a million refugees passed by Warsaw, more than 470,000 stayed (266,000 in the City Center), More than 25% of the City – 15% of Warsaw Metropolis population. In March, the President of Warsaw, Rafał Trzaskowski, appeals for massive help and coordination from the state, European Union, and UN. Slowly, all EU members, but also the UK, US (up to 100,000), Canada, and many others around the world opened their doors to Ukrainian refugees. UNICEF was received by Rafał Trzaskowski on March 21st in order to ensure access to education, supplement the vaccinations required in Poland, and protection against abuse of Ukrainian children (signed on 02.04.22). Saturday, March 26th, U.S. President Joe Biden is in Warsaw to meet the Polish President, Prime Minister, and President of Warsaw and deliver a speech in front of the Royal Castle.
Rafał Trzaskowski in an interview for NBC News on 31.03.22 says he is proud of Warsaw as we “cannot expect to have refugees in the streets”, they are ” in our homes”, “integrated into the society”.
« The west has to wake up and send a strong signal that they are welcome, not only in Poland and Romania and Slovakia, but everywhere» – Rafał Trzaskowski – President of Warsaw – CBS Mornings
(18h – 09.03.22) – In the central station, hundreds of refugees were waiting on the first and second floors, some are looking for train tickets, others for accommodation with the service located in the middle of the station, food is distributed nearby and in a tent outside. People wait as they can, on blankets, benches, a closed and glazed waiting room has been converted into a shelter where dozens of families took refuge with their children. A playground has been improvised, where carefree children are running, drawing, and playing with balloons. Dozens of volunteers are taking care of the refugees including firemen, police, and security personnel.
+10,000 volunteers applied in Warsaw to help refugees from Ukraine. If you want to join, the city of Warsaw invites you, especially those who can communicate in Ukrainian or Russian to apply on this link: https://ochotnicy.waw.pl/oferta/2003
You can help families with accommodations in Warsaw and all over Poland, now almost 5000 flats or rooms have been proposed (click here to see the map)
Warsaw Central Station
Ukrainians leaving Warsaw by train or bus to join their families or to fight.