"New Mariupol" is the name of an organisation which was officially registered only two weeks ago but has already changed the city’s image. I have not seen more active, persistent and versatile volunteers. Everyone I have talked to so far has asked me: “And do you know New Mariupol already?” I have got to know it today and I am impressed.
Amongst the apparent chaos of the makeshift facilities, supplies are gathered for soldiers, transport and care of the wounded are organised, and representatives of other organisations, journalists as well as volunteers are received. Medical courses and military training are organised. “New Mariupol” has a completely horizontal structure, has no official authorities and because of this, at least a dozen or so projects are being conducted in parallel. They know all that’s going on in the city, in battalions, at guard posts.
They are said to be the ones who forced the city authorities to act more effectively and faster to defend the city. The credit for the equipment which helps build anti-tank ditches goes to them. A chain of peace, rallies every Sunday, Ukrainian symbols in the city streets – the people I have met today are behind all of this.
What are they planning? Now – do whatever is possible to help the army hold on to the city. Then – what their name suggests. Influence passive city residents (most of whom are so), raise their awareness, build “New Mariupol”. I keep my fingers crossed.