Young people in Chernihiv take pictures of their high school diploma against the backdrop of the war.
The world is still open to Ukrainian students who leave school at the beginning of the year. Now they sew their graduation photos in front of what’s left of their homeland.
Valerie and the rest of her class are looking forward to the end of the school year, which is their last: Ukrainian students start planning the prom early and are already thinking about choreographies for the prom. On February 22, a young woman buys a dress for a longed-for evening: it’s a dream in red.
But two days later her world is collapsing – and three days after the start of the Russian invasion, as is the place where the grand celebration was to take place: school number 134 in Kharkiv. The war has swept across the country and darkens Valerie’s prospects for the future.
But her mother Nadia refuses to accept it. He urges his daughter to return to the site on June 6 – and take the last photo. The aunt posts a photo on the Internet on Facebook: “Thank you dear Valerie for being so strong and brave,” she writes. “I am so proud of you and I love you so much.”
Valeria (in 📷) imagined photos at the prom in a completely different way.
Her school in #Kharkov was destroyed on February 27.
Valeria is now unsure of her plans, but will not allow herself to feel defeated. Here she is wearing a prom dress near a former school. pic.twitter.com/2bQV1bdp60
– Anton Gerashchenko (@Gerashchenko_en) June 7, 2022
The video of this infinite contrast quickly circulated the Internet – and was picked up and discussed by political adviser Anton Herashchenko. Not only Valerie does not give up her high school exams.
11th graders move the prom to the basketball court. Only three students are dancing with the girls in front of the dilapidated school, while the soldiers stare in the background. They belong to the Kraken detachment of the Azov regiment, which recaptured the school.
Students of School No.134 in Kharkiv danced the ball waltz against the background of the ruins of their alma mater.
Heavily damaged days later #Russiaafter a full-scale invasion of Ukraine in February, the school later became the last facility for the #Russian occupiers in Kharkiv.
– Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine 🇺🇦 (@MSZ_Ukraina) June 6, 2022
Students of school number 134 left their mark with their photos – even if shooting was difficult for them. “I spent eleven years there,” explains Valerie. «When I saw the school, I could cry. It was the best school, there are many memories in it. “
Another spooky photo from Chernihiv.
Valerier’s aunt Anna is glad that her niece has taken this step. “I think the photo is so powerful because it shows all the young people graduating from school in Ukraine.” And this group has a hard time chewing on war: “They are everyone’s heart tears.” And an example, of course, has become a precedent – like the next impressive photos from the diplomas at the Chernihiv show.
The last scene from Chernihiv.