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28 April 2022

«On the first day of the war, I joined the Territorial Defense Forces»: the story of Margaryta, Tabletochki’s outpatient housing specialist

Margaryta Sklyanychenko is Tabletochki’s outpatient housing specialist. Until February 24, she took care of housing for families who came from regions to Kyiv for treatment and created comfortable conditions. When the war broke out, Margaryta joined the Territorial Defense Forces (TDF).

«It was the only answer to what to do? On the morning of February 24, I spoke with my flatmate, and he talked about his desire to join the TDF. I said I would go with him. He did not talk me out, only asked if I would go to the western regions of Ukraine. I would not because who will defend Kyiv if everyone leaves?

The first week I took up positions on the site where we were based with a weapon on my shoulder and an inner readiness to shoot. In my free time (at first, I still had it), I tried to get acquainted with people, learn the rules, and help where I saw the need.

Later, I coordinated volunteer assistance for my battalion to provide it with medicines, military supplies, equipment, and food. Every day I had a lot of communication with volunteers and donors.

The biggest joy for me was to provide the battalion with what was needed. And it’s not just about material value. For example, the women at headquarters were thrilled to find underwear, hand creams, and hair dryers. And the men in the engineering service were incredibly happy when many white bags arrived. We filled them with sand and had to constantly replenish supplies.

Working and living conditions were difficult. However, it encouraged me to appreciate everything I have even more. After a week at the headquarters, I came to spend the night at home. I lay down and felt the bed with my back – it was an incredible pleasure after the mats and sleeping bags!

I improved my discipline and shooting skills. Working at the TDF made me acquaintances with amazing people: soldiers and volunteers. Such an experience hardens the character and helps to express love for the Motherland.»

Recently, Margaryta left TDF. Her grandmother, who lives near Okhtyrka (Sumy Oblast), has health issues, so Margaryta went there to bring her medicine and take care of her. During her stay there, she supported locals and the military of the 93rd Mechanized Brigade.

Now Margaryta has returned to work at the Foundation and continues to help the military.

Margo, we are proud of you! We admire and thank you for your courage to defend Ukraine in the ranks of the Territorial Defense Forces!

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