War is a catastrophe with absolutely no silver linings. No number of victories and badges could justify the toll it takes on human life. Ukraine had been struggling to break loose from the sharp claws of war ever since Russia took over the country. Even after the Russian troops retreated, the scars left by the war are still as fresh as in the beginning. There are people who lost their lives, and there are several others about whom their families have no information. In the haze of the war, these people vanished without a trace, and their loved ones are trying their best to locate them, or at least know if they are dead or living. For these people, social media platforms are becoming beacons of hope. They post messages every single day in the hope that someone somewhere might have a clue about their dear ones. Read along to know more.
Residents of Lyman, Ukraine post messages on Telegram every single day in an attempt to find their loved ones who disappeared over the last five months. During the time of the Russian occupation, obtaining information about anyone or anything was entirely out of question. Lyman was at the receiving end of Russia’s brutal attack that greatly affected the population. Following the attacks, Lyman which had a population of over 20,000 decreased to just 5,000.
War ends, but the memory of it has the power to seep through generations. Lyman is liberated now, and yet people are tormented by the uncertainty surrounding people who went missing during the time of the conflict. The telegram groups do their bit in alleviating this uncertainty to some extent as they come with a tinge of hope.
Channels Of Hope
Hope comes in different forms. In war-torn Ukraine, hope is synonymous with Telegram groups. A woman named Catherine started ‘Lyman Online’ in the month of May. This Telegram channel was created in the hopes that it would become a resource for her hometown. At the moment, the channel has over 3,200 members. Every single day, Catherine religiously posts pleas for any information about people who went missing.
“At first, I was only helping people I knew, and then I started helping everyone. People wrote in personal messages. There were too many. So I created a group where people write text messages, and there I send information,” said Catherine.
It was during the periods of intense fighting in Lyman that the platform was crowded with the most number of messages. During these times, communication channels will be cut off, adding to the anxiety of worried relatives who write in the group.