Around The World - Kiev, Ukraine

COVID-19, Crisis or Opportunity?

Photo source: https://ua-news.liga.net/.



On the 14th of March my business trip with the UNAMID mission in Sudan was postponed due to imposed quarantine measures by the Ukrainian government. Being based in Kiev, the political and business capital, I am fortunate enough to have a well-paid job that has allowed me financial freedom during COVID-19. Also, the pandemic has allowed me to establish myself as a specialist in the area of sports management. 

Today is marked by a considerable daily increase (+311) in infection rates of COVID-19 (total – 2203) which will most probably grow exponentially from now on. Being in locked-down in Kiev, means you are only allowed to leave the house if you have personal identification documents and you can only visit public places wearing a maskIt is worth noting that you can only go to public places with a maximum of two people. All parks, squares, sports and children’s playgrounds are forbidden to walk in unless you go alone, or with your pet. Finally, policemen regularly check and fine wrongdoers. 

Current post-soviet health care is not as you would expect. In the 90s, health care was free in Ukraine; however, you ‘literally’ had to die in the line to be taken care of (this led to an outbreak of corruption within the health care staff and people jumping the queues etc..). Although doctors were well qualified and medical institutions were of good quality, there was no investment which resulted in hospitals utilising outdated equipment. A few years ago, the government decided to turn to an American-styled healthcare system. The introduction of private clinics means younger doctors are less likely to go into the public system and this leave public hospitals with a lack of health care professionals 

Public awareness, I believe, is the key to overcoming this crisis with the least amount of losses. I feel extremely sorry for citizens who do not realize that hospitals and doctors will not be able to handle the dramatic increase of people infected by COVID-19, brought about by those who disregard social distancing and lockdown guidelines. 

Policemen patrolling parks. Photo source: https://www.unian.net/.

The most disturbing thing is about this situation, is that we have no idea when to expect both the peak and virus regression. On the other hand, the positive part of this is that we now have the time for family, ourselves, self-education. 

Impact

COVID-19 has massively affected the world and all areas of our lives and it will affect us much more in the future in my opinion.   In the Ukraine, medical staff are undersupplied with personal protective equipment (PPE), and as of April 14, the number of people infected is 3372 and of the 3372, 594 are medical staff which is 18%. According to the Minister of Health Care, we have around 3500 artificial lung ventilators (the population of Ukraine is about 40 million) 

For the first time since World War II, football, played in the Ukraine, which is followed by more than 3.5 billion viewers worldwide, in fact, all sports, have stopped for an indefinite amount of time. Consequently this will impact profit margins as media rights and sponsorship deals will need to be reevaluated alongside players and staff costs. 

I believe everything happens for a reason. Mother Earth is bleeding and suffering from human actions. Whole species are at the edge of extinction and it all comes down to money. The world is changing, maybe it is time for us to change too, not just to adapt, but to change things for better.  


Empty streets of 4 mln. city. Photo source: https://www.obozrevatel.com/

Reflections and Right-doings

“Deep within every crisis is an opportunity for something beautiful.”― Kate McGahan (US author). 

I fill my time by reshaping my thoughts on my career and putting down ideas and future plans. However, it is not as easy as it seems and to stop the lure of watching less Netflix and swop that with reading more books. Interestingly though over the last two weeks I have participated in around 10 great webinars from renowned professionals in sports management. The great thing about these webinars are that they are all free like many other digital educational platforms. 

The fact that people are uniting during these rough times to help one another, is refreshing.   I have found that educating others, exercising at home, and helping family remotely tunes me into a positive mood and I am giving something back. 

What is more, I am delighted to spend more time with my girlfriend, improve my culinary skills (I am a bad chef, honestly) as I cook for her while she works. This is definitely the time for us and our loved ones. 

All in all, it comes down to thinking differently and transforming your mindset to push past and get ready for a better future. 


Sunset in Kiev. Photo source: https://nashkiev.ua/.

Stay safe and motivated

The question I keep asking myself: crisis or opportunity? 

Despite the growing amount of pessimistic news, there is light out there. During this time of crisis, we all have opportunities. Opportunity to become better, the opportunity to improve skills, opportunity to help others, opportunity to identify and restructure goals. 

Acknowledge the crisis for what it is and focus all energy on getting things right – this is the first step. And I will gladly start with myself. 


Written by Iurii Borovyi.

The monument of Motherland in Kiev. Photo source: https://lux.fm/.