An art exhibition is taking place in Angus to honour Ukrainian mothers.
Many will be celebrating Mother’s Day this Sunday away from their families, the vast majority still separated as the conflict continues.
Yulia Kochubei and Tetiana Al-Zubaidi are both mothers who brought their children to Scotland for safety.
“My mum is still in Ukraine, we will call her. She feels peace because she knows about us that we are in a good place,” said Tetiana, crying.
They fled the war almost one year ago.
Now, in the peaceful setting of the Arbroath coast, they will be celebrated for their bravery.
Ukrainian Mother’s Day is this Sunday, and while they have their own children here, they are missing their mums too.
Yulia’s husband is in the army and her mother is still in their native town in eastern Ukraine.
She said: “It’s difficult to celebrate Mother’s Day apart from your mother but we hope for better.
“We will call our mums, my mum and my husband’s mum and we can have a video call with my kids. That will be a good present for us all.”
The artist featured in the exhibit is Yaryna Kvltka, who came to the UK before the war began. Now, she said the inspiration behind her work has changed.
She said: “When the war started I was so sad, and it was so bad inside of my soul.
“There are some people who can cry and that will clean their pain, through the tear drops. But for me, it was very difficult.
“I started making some drawings and finally I had 15 or 20 to make this collection called ‘Motherhood’. Mother is a connection between past, present and future.”
The exhibition was organised by Angus artist, Mary-Ann Orr, who has just returned from a trip to Ukraine, bringing art supplies to the children of the war-torn country.
“I had the most extraordinary life-changing experience and I think the thing that affected me the most was that the children had lost their childhoods.
So many of them are busy doing things to fundraise for the war.
“One little boy I met was busking. His dad had died in the war and he would get on the train every day and try to raise some money for a truck similar to the one I took over.
“I was then hugely inspired to come back and raise money for more art materials.”
Even through the darkest of times, families hope that the determination and sacrifice of their people will one day help them return to their motherland.
The children here dream of going back to Ukraine.
One little girl said: “There is a war in Kyiv and we were really scared that someone would break into our house and kill us, so we came to this country.”
A young boy added: “My name is Damon. I came to Scotland because of the war.
“I want to come to Ukraine as soon as I can. I enjoy being in Scotland but I want to be in Ukraine more.”
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