Nadine Medvedchuk: “In Italy, without the necessary documents and knowledge of the language, you are nobody”

Nadine Medvedchuk: In Italy, without the necessary documents and knowledge of the language, you are nobody - 1 - изображение

Nadine Medvedchuk

Instagram blogger and ex-participant of the “Bachelor” show Nadine Medvedchuk was forced to go abroad with the beginning of a full-scale Russian attack on Ukraine, like many other Ukrainians. On February 24, the girl got from Kyiv to Chernivtsi in a rented car, and later went to Italy, where her mother lives and works. In an interview with Woman , Nadine talked about her current life, volunteering and the attitude of Italians to the situation in Ukraine. And she also gave valuable advice to those who are planning to immigrate to Italy.

The fifth month continues since the day of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. How have you personally and your life values changed?

Life has changed radically. I had everything – my own apartment in the center of Kyiv, my favorite job, crazy goals and plans for the future. But on February 24, everything stopped. And the most important thing – it will not be like before. I began to appreciate more the moment here and now, the smile of my parents and my health. Everything material became unimportant.

You immediately joined the volunteer movement. Do you feel that every day fewer and fewer people are able to help?

From the first days, I began to actively work in the “blogger battalion” information headquarters. A lot of people donated for bulletproof vests, and we made really great results. Therefore, despite everything, I urge people not to stop and donate to the official accounts through the “Action” application.

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The blogger actively volunteers

Have you had problems with survivor syndrome?

Yes, in March, my mother insisted on a trip with her to Milan (she has been working there for 10 years). I agreed, although I really wanted to go to Kyiv.  I admit, my condition was extremely difficult then: I was stressed, did not sleep and did not eat, constantly slouched, did not take care of myself, did not paint, walked in the same clothes. I only cried, read the news and published information. It lasted a month. And then I realized that I cannot win with my dirty head or red eyes. You need to be healthy, live on and develop. You need to work and pay taxes, help the Armed Forces. And life went step by step. Now I still get hate, but it doesn’t affect me. The goal is victory. There is strength in unity. And hate can only split our strength.

You were forced to immigrate to Italy. How do the locals feel about the large flow of people from Ukraine?

In March – April, the attitude was excellent – a lot of attention, conversations and help. Now, unfortunately, significantly fewer Italians help, they do not send a humanitarian. However, our citizens are treated with respect and empathy everywhere.

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Nadine Medvedchuk

What services did you use to find the information you needed?

I used it myself, and I advise everyone to contact only the official telegram channels. And also to official volunteers.

Can you give advice to those who are planning to temporarily move to Italy?

Italy is a rather complicated country. And if you don’t have relatives or friends who live here, I don’t recommend moving and planning a life in Italy. After all, without the necessary documents and knowledge of the language, it is simply impossible to get a job. Without documents and language, you are nobody. And in general, the situation on the employment market here is not very optimistic. However, if you still decide to go, here is what you need to know:

  • After arriving by train to the country, volunteers can be found at the central railway station, they will provide the necessary information.
  • Be prepared that filing documents for temporary shelter at the Questura is a long process. On average – from 1 to 4 months.
  • To get the documents, you will need a piece of paper about temporary shelter from an Italian, confirmation of a hotel reservation, or an invitation to temporary shelter from a charity. In the first two options, there will be payments from the state, in the last – not.
  • After submitting your fingerprints, you will receive a temporary paper document – a receipt. You cannot leave the country with it if the period of stay has exceeded 90 days.
  • Free housing is not provided by the state. Such bonuses are possible only from the church or individuals.
  • You can apply for financial assistance from the state online, 10 days after submitting documents for shelter. Funds are paid anywhere in the country at a Poste Italiano post office. €300 for an adult and €150 for a child for 3 months.
  • If you need humanitarian aid, you can get it from Caritas.
How much money should you expect for the first time in order to rent a house, to provide yourself with basic necessities?

Everyone has a different amount of expenses, lifestyle. Therefore, everything is individual. Some took Airbnb vouchers and lived for free. The Italians gave someone accommodation for nothing. In general, renting a bed in Milan costs 250-500€/month, an apartment from 800€/month, housing in the city center – from 2000€/month.

How do the locals feel about rallies for Ukraine?

Treat with respect. In Milan , for example, rallies take place every week. There is a lot of support. Of course, there are those who sympathize with Putin. There was a situation with two Italians who support the actions of Russia – I sent them, I barely managed not to hit them. There are enough misfits everywhere.

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Nadine Medvedchuk

In your opinion, are bloggers and opinion leaders now obliged to wage an informational war against fakes? Is it important to keep covering events?

It is important to continue to cover the war, but within the rules defined by social networks. You probably often see information about deleted accounts – Instagram deletes for certain words, gestures and photos of violence. Since February 24, I have had 32 warnings, and after the 35th, the profile is deleted forever. This is why I now filter text and information very heavily. And I also began to receive conditions from international brands – during the period of cooperation, you cannot publish negativity, war and dead people.

Photo: personal archive of the blogger

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