MISSION, Texas (ValleyCentral) – A Mission native sets out to volunteer in Ukraine.
Marcos Guerra said he felt guided to take a one-way trip from Mission to Ukraine at the onset of the Russia-Ukraine war.
“After I saw all the horrible things going on, something inside of me was just telling me I had to go try to help,” said Guerra.
Guerra found himself at the Poland-Ukraine border where he said he joined the Polish Red Cross. Thousands of miles away from home, Guerra said an inner voice was guiding him to go further into Ukraine.
“Then something inside of me was telling me I had to go to Lviv, I didn’t know why, but after a day of being there I met a journalist and a humanitarian and we kind of made a team,” said Guerra.
The team of three journeyed through war-torn cities close to the capital, Kiev.
“We had a lot of supplies with us, donations so we were going to villages, donating a lot of food and water to villages and people that didn’t really have much,” said Guerra.
Russia invaded Ukraine in late February on the basis of Ukraine’s desire to join NATO, something Russian President Vladimir Putin said threatens Russia’s national security.
Kiev was targeted by Russian forces, but Guerra said that did not stop him from getting closer. He added cities like Bucha and Chernihiv were in the worst conditions.
“Chernihiv city was really bad, there was a soccer field that was completely destroyed,” said Guerra. “There were these really deep craters in the ground and it was just all over!”
“Bucha was just destroyed, I mean there was a whole block of houses, apartments just gone. Just reduced to rubble,” said Guerra. “When you’re up close and personal seeing all the destruction, you’re just like, why?”
Emptied grocery stores, churches reduced to rubble, and dead bodies of civilians are among other images Guerra said he saw. Though Guerra said he cannot fathom the tragedy at hand, he does not see his travels ending any time soon.
“It’s just the same as when I first got here into Ukraine. We still hear the sirens going off, we still don’t know what’s going to happen, but I do have my faith,” said Guerra.
Guerra said he is now doing freelance photography to continue to spread the message of what is going on in the grounds of Ukraine.
One way you can support Guerra’s volunteer efforts is through this GoFundMe link.