Last week, Jesuit Mission Australia held their latest webinar—Hope for Families Fleeing Ukraine—about the Jesuits’ provision of emergency and long-term assistance to Ukrainian refugees.

The webinar welcomed special guest and project partner of Jesuit Mission Fr Marius Talos SJ, Director of Jesuit Refugee Service (JRS) Romania, and Anastasiia, who bravely fled the war in Ukraine to Romania with her 11-year-old son.

‘I left because I feared for my life and the life of my son. I saw how my son was scared. I heard bombs, I heard alarms, and I decided we should go,’ said Anastasiia.

It’s been one year and four months since the flight of Anastasiia and her son, who remain in Romania. Although they have been warmly welcomed by JRS Romania and the local community, the process of integrating into the new country has been a difficult journey.

At 11 years old, her son was devastated by the separation from his grandmothers, who at the time stayed in Ukraine, and he developed a neurotic tick from the trauma of fleeing the war.

‘I felt like I fled with a little child, and in one year he has had to grow up too quickly. All children deserve a childhood,’ said Anastasiia.

At the JRS Romania Centre, Anastasiia’s son has received psychological assistance to help manage the tick he developed and to help him connect with fellow Ukrainian children.

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JRS Romania is assisting thousands of Ukrainian children aged 3–17 by offering educational services, psychological assistance and recreational activities.

‘In over 16 months, we have assisted more than 22,000 refugees from Ukraine, from welcoming to protecting, from promoting to integrating them,’ said Fr Marius.

Anastasiia herself has also received psychosocial and housing support and is now employed by JRS Romania to assist other Ukrainians in need.

‘Recently I had the pleasure of meeting Anastasiia in person and I am deeply inspired by her courage, resilience and strength. I thank our Jesuit partners for keeping her, her family and other Ukrainian refugees safe,’ said Helen Forde, CEO of Jesuit Mission.

To learn more about the collaboration between Jesuit Mission Australia and JRS Romania in assisting refugees fleeing Ukraine, watch the webinar at