Pics for Peace #Ukraine2015

Ukraine is a country in which I have traveled more than twenty times; for the first time in 1994.

I was in the Donbas, in Donetsk, 15 months before the event of the Maidan Square in Kiev that set off the armed conflict in the East of the country.

During the summer of 2014, when Donetsk was almost surrounded, and because I felt useless to photograph this absurd fratricidal war, I decided to organize a photo workshop in this city shelled 24 hours a day.

At the early beginnig, the main idea was to involve teenagers who have been hurt by the atrocities of bombings.

For this reason I started to collect money via a crowdfunding. The collect was achieved in January 2015 and I left immediately to reach the stronghold of the rebellion : Donetsk.
After a few hard weeks on the spot, the cease-fire treaty of Minsk II was signed. That allowed the children to go out again from their homes to attend their school and practise their hobbies again.
Then it became possible for us, twenty young people and myself, to work during three weeks.
Subsequently, when I returned, I wanted to continue this adventure on both sides of the front. So I visited in May 2015, Illichivsk* near Odessa, on the Ukrainian side.

Finally, in June-July I returned to Donbas, Gorlovka, a city still regularly bombed at night.

*now Chernomorsk