Houston’s heartbroken Ukrainian community shows pain over Russian invasion in downtown mural

Iryna Petrovska Marchiano fears that soon the novelty and shock of the Russian-Ukrainian war will fade.

That’s why the former president and active volunteer of the Ukrainian American Cultural Club of Houston commissioned a #StandWithUkraine peace mural at 112 Travis Street, hoping to build awareness and support for the Ukrainian people. The mural, a blue and yellow heart, was painted by local artist Shelbi Nicole.

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“The heart is a heart that is breaking right now,” Marchiano said, “It is a heart that means love for our motherland and the people who are suffering unnecessarily, having done nothing to cause this war. “

Marchiano also launched the website HTX4UKRAINEhoping it can serve as a resource for those who want to get involved, donate to their cause and contact their elected official.

“We decided this would help people have a one-stop-shop for all information about how people can help the effort in Ukraine,” Marchiano said.

Marchiano says the Ukrainian American Cultural Club is working with other Ukrainian organizations and families to centralize their local fundraising efforts so people can donate seamlessly to their cause.

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Every weekday, from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., the Club, the Ukrainian community and supporters of their cause have been and will continue to gather at the corner of Post Oak and Westheimer to raise awareness among the Ukrainian people.

“People refuse to give up,” Marchiano said. “People want to keep going out because it helps them cope with [the war] emotionally. It gives them a way to fight the battle in their own way, instead of sitting at home crying into a pillow.”

James C. Tibbs