Europe's Voice of Tourism

Skal Madrid in aid to exiles from Ukraine

The Skal Clubs of Madrid and Paris have come together to get accommodation in Paris for a group of Ukrainian exiles who were picked up by a bus from the Grand Class company, directed by Pedro López, with two drivers in the Polish city of Krakow.

The bus arrived after two in the afternoon at the centre that the Ministry of Inclusion, Social Security and Migration has in Pozuelo de Alarcón, in front of the Spanish Television complex. There they were received by the director of Grand Class, by the president of Solidarity Tourism 2020, Estefanía Macías, and the president of Skal Internacional de Madrid, Francisco Rivero, who was the person who managed the overnight stays of these exiles in the capital of France, through Karine Coulanges, president of Skal de Paris and former president of Skal International, without forgetting the NGO “Firefighters help”.

Karine Coulanges bought toys for the children, some of whom were babies. They stayed at the Holyday Inn Hotel. In turn, the Spanish hotel company Room Mate also provided rooms to house immigrants fleeing the war of invasion of their country by Russia. She was accompanied throughout the trip by television journalist Israel García Juez, who has broadcast her trip through Telemadrid and Tele5.

Alexandra Dyschue

It was an exciting moment to see how the children ran off the bus, as if it were a vacation for them, enjoying their new toys and eating sweets. A television team recorded and interviewed the newcomers through the guide-translator, Alexandra Dyschue, who accompanied him throughout the trip. The statement of a woman and her daughter about having lost their house in the bombings and losing consciousness without even remembering her name was shocking.

A singular case was that of a retired Olena, the oldest on the trip, who arrived alone from Krakow and hopes to meet her daughter and son-in-law in the Alicante city of Villena; others will go to Mallorca, others to Tenerife and a family to Mérida. The Ukrainians will be distributed throughout Spain at the home of their relatives.

Olena with translator Natalia

It was, without a doubt, a great humanitarian work that has been carried out in this first action of Solidarity Tourism 2020 together with the Skal of Madrid and Skal of Paris.