Assistance to the family of former political prisoner and former BSUIR teacher Olga Filatchenkova, who urgently left Belarus

  • Story

My Dear People!

My name is Olga Filatchenkova. I am a programmer by education, but several years before 2020 I was engaged in teaching activities in my native university BSUIR — I shared my knowledge with future talented programmers.

November 12, 2020 drew a red line in my life and the lives of ten other students from different universities. KGB officers came to me and the guys, and two weeks later they arrested another girl. Thus began our high-profile “students' case”. Of course it was flattering for me to be in a group of beautiful, honest, talented, caring and beautiful young people, but the circumstances that bound us together were so bad, alas. Nevertheless, I am proud to have gotten to know the guys and I don't regret anything. 

I have spent my life trying to fight injustice. Some days less actively, some days more. And when the events of 2020 began, no force could make me stay away. I was an observer during the election and saw with my own eyes what was happening. 

With the beginning of the school year, student protests began. BSUIR has always had active students, so it is not surprising that the events forced them to express their position. Detentions began. I, as a mother and as a teacher, could not calmly watch what was happening. I was primarily concerned about safety. I and other teachers fought for the guys to be able to openly express their opinions and not be subjected to various kinds of repression, such as expulsion or arrest. The student actions were completely peaceful and so beautiful! I was so proud that it was my university and my students!

After being detained, I had to go through many different trials. There was a pre-trial detention center, trials, stage, colony. But this hard time in separation from my beloved people did not shake my belief that Belarusians are wonderful! I met the most beautiful people in captivity and received a great support from a lot of not indifferent Belarusians and Belarussians. I am immensely grateful to all of you!

I was released on November 30, 2022, having fully served my sentence. I was not allowed to leave the country. For quite a long time I tried to somehow organize my life in my native and madly loved Belarus, but all the time I felt the fear that nothing was over yet. 

Gradually, all my so-called “accomplices” left the country, and I remained the “last of the Mohicans” for a number of personal reasons. However, there came a moment when I still had to leave my country urgently, because by all indications there was again interest in my modest person from the state authorities. Together with my ten-year-old daughter and two backpacks, we were evacuated by the BYSOL team, and now we really need your support to start a new life in a new country, to stay afloat during the paperwork and job search.

I have always believed, believe and will always believe that Belarusians are wonderful! And thank you so much for everything!

How much is needed?

Our departure was urgent, so we left without any belongings. We needed the money

  • to rent a place to live for a few months until I find a job. This will require proof of teaching qualifications. (Renting an apartment for 3 months + deposit + services of a notary for signing the contract and certifying the passport copy — €3000)
  • to buy clothes and shoes for me and my daughter, as well as for getting her ready for school and setting up a workplace for her. €600. 
  • to buy a minimum set of things to organize the household: dishes, bed linen, some minimum household appliances, hygiene, food. €600.
  • €600 to buy a violin for my daughter so that she can continue her music lessons and for the initial payment of these lessons. €200
  • to pay for language courses for me and my daughter to speed up the process of adaptation to society and to have more opportunities to find a job. €300.
  • to pay for a psychologist as we need to work through the traumas we have experienced. €300
The collection is over. Сollected:
€ 5 756
The collection is over. Сollected: € 5 756