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'It's a hope for victory': Unity rally in KC marks two-year anniversary of Russia-Ukraine War

Ukraine rally
Posted at 6:09 PM, Feb 24, 2024

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — In a display of solidarity and support for Ukraine, dozens gathered at Mill Creek Park Saturday to commemorate the two-year anniversary of the Russia-Ukraine War.

The rally, organized by local community leaders and activists, aimed to raise awareness about the ongoing conflict and show solidarity with the people affected by the war.

“Two years ago, we all came in shock, anger and disbelief, and big hope for victory, and today is the same. It's a hope for victory. We're still together and we hope for more support," said Lyudmyla Savinkova, president of Ukranian Club of Kansas City.

Against the backdrop of the park's surroundings, a community clad in blue and yellow — the national colors of Ukraine — stood united, holding banners and signs that called for peace and an end to the violence.

"That community is very important," said Savinkova. "You're not alone in this situation, all have backs of each other, you know. And also it's not just for us here, it's my friends, my family."

The rally featured cultural performances; traditional music served as a reminder of the vibrant cultural heritage that has been impacted by the ongoing conflict.

"It is so nice to see that Americans come here with the flags and support Ukraine," said Violanta Lewis. "Well, these two years have been tremendously difficult for us mentally, physically; we've witnessed a lot of loss."

Attendees at the rally expressed their solidarity through messages of peace and calls for diplomatic resolutions. Many carried signs reading "Peace for Ukraine," while others waved Ukrainian flags.

For many of the attendees like Nikita Ykhailenko, 16, who moved to KC from Ukraine just over a year ago, the rally was a way for him to show support for the family he left behind.

"It's actually really hard. It's harder because you understand they're in danger," said Ykhailenko.

As this weekend marks two years of war for Ukraine, the rally served as a testament to the power of community solidarity and the importance of standing together in the face of global challenges.