Isabelle admits not sleeping much for several days: “ What saddens me the most is the fate of the children. There are many of them in the center and nothing is planned for them, there are no games, no activities, no school activities. As the refugees are supposed to stay only 2 or 3 days, reception is limited to the strict minimum, but when they stay 2 or 3 weeks, the situation becomes untenable, especially in terms of hygiene. When they arrive, they receive a small kit with soap and shampoo, but they quickly run out. That’s why we bring them hygiene products, but it’s not up to us to do that. And the animals, we can’t even walk them, they have to stay in a cage. In short, we have to find housing for these people. We collect testimonies from women in tears, they can’t take it anymore, the place is not suitable for long stays, we have to find alternatives. However, the holidays are approaching, the decision-makers are going to leave, there is urgency. I knocked on many doors, I got very few answers.”
Given the magnitude and urgency of the situation, a meeting brought the main stakeholders around the table on Tuesday morning. Everyone pleaded their good faith, calling for solutions, but it will probably take many other meetings and long negotiations between the different levels of power for the most vulnerable Ukrainian refugees to see their reception conditions improve.