Brooklyn Water Polo Bleeds for Ukraine

Demyan_LIU (GOOD)

As the conflict in Ukraine grinds on for a second week, the shock of armed combat in Eastern Europe has given way—at least in this country—to compassion for those most undeserving of chaos: children trapped by Russia’s brutal military assault against its neighbor.

A young Russian now in New York City has decided to take a stand on the side of compassion. Demyan Kruglov, who resides in Brooklyn, is determined to make a positive difference in the lives of those he will (likely) never meet. That he is also a devoted water polo player—a sport quite well known to Russians and Ukrainians alike—is but a small though noteworthy facet of a high school freshman’s surprisingly mature perspective.

My name Is Demyan Kruglov. I was born in Russia, and my paternal grandmother was born in Ukraine. I have family friends from Ukraine; I have school friends from Ukraine. I am genetically part of Ukraine.

What is happening in Ukraine is unjust, cruel, and horrifying. Although the large-scale invasion of Ukraine has only lasted several days thus far, many innocent children and families have been affected in irreversible ways. I am a simple high schooler and my goal is to make some dent in this arising issue. Nobody should suffer from wars in the modern-day world.

I am not asking for much, but as little as a dollar can make a difference that can positively impact these innocent people.

A GoFundMe page Demyan recently set up to transfer donations to Ukrainians via UNICEF has begun gathering donations towards its modest goal of $3,000—and praise from the parent of a teammate who happens to hail from the beleaguered nation bravely resisting Russian aggression.

“What Demyan did is very important,” said Taras Budurovych, a Ukrainian native whose son Marko plays with Demyan on the Brooklyn Hustle, an age group water polo club in New York City. “He is setting  a good example of unity for his teammates: everyone should care despite their origin or nationality.”

“Demyan is indeed a very caring person,” said someone who should know: Olga Fedorova, Demyan’s mother. A native of Russia like her son, Fedorova added: “We all feel for Ukraine now.”

Indeed, we do.

To Contribute To Demyan Kruglov’s GoFundMe page: click here

To Contribute Directly to UNICEF’s Efforts for Ukrainians: click here