A ten-year-old lady was devastated to go away her cat behind when her household fled Ukraine. However they lately reunited in California.

Because the conflict in Ukraine continued to escalate, the Bezhenar household made the tough resolution to go away the nation in July. They needed to go away the whole lot behind – their enterprise, their house, and even their pets, which devastated their 10-year-old daughter. 

“We couldn’t take any animals that we have now,” Maria Bezhenar, a mother of three, advised CBS Information. “We requested my brother-in-law to look at over the animals and the youngest one, Agnessa, she was crying each time. She says, ‘I wish to return house. My animals are there, my cats are there.’ And we could not assist her.” 

Bezhenar and her husband, Aleksander, first moved to Romania with their three daughters, Eleanor, Agnessa, and Angelina, in addition to Bezhenar’s mom. They might solely keep briefly, so, they determined to maneuver to the US. They promised Agnessa they might undertake a cat as soon as they acquired there.

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10-year-old Agnessa was devastated to go away behind her beloved cat, Arsenii, when her household fled Ukraine. 

Maria Beznehar


Bezhenar discovered a program, UkraineTakeShelter.com, which helps refugees discover housing within the U.S., and he or she related with Geoffry Peters in Cloverdale, California. 

Peters has devoted his life to working for charities, and is now on the board of a fundraising company for nonprofits. His latest mission was serving to a household from Ukraine transfer to the U.S.

“Are you able to think about your life being turned the other way up and it’s a must to go away a rustic you’ve got by no means left earlier than, journey on an airplane you’ve got by no means completed earlier than? Arrive in a brand new nation, study a language,” Peters advised CBS Information. “I imply, it is like ranging from scratch, solely it is on steroids. It is like the whole lot transferring 100 miles an hour.”

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Geoffry Peters provided a house to the Bezhenar household after assembly them via an internet site that connects Ukrainian refugees with housing.

Maria Beznehar


Peters had a second house for the Bezhenars and helped them expedite their transfer to the U.S. However they arrived somewhat too shortly – Peters and his spouse have been on trip once they acquired there in July.

“The home was an empty home,” he mentioned. “So, we contacted all of our buddies locally right here in Cloverdale, California and actually they furnished all the home from prime to backside. Beds for each individual within the household, kitchenware, utensils, plates.”

His grandchildren greeted the household with indicators on the airport and drove them to Cloverdale, the place they noticed how beneficiant the group had been, Bezhenar mentioned, calling the second “unbelievable.” 

Finally, Peters and his spouse arrived house and met the Bezhenars, they usually shaped a connection. “Once we noticed them, they turned like our father and mom. I name him ‘adoptive father,'” Bezhenar mentioned. 

Since coming to the U.S., the household has made many modifications. They’ve gotten their California drivers licenses. The ladies have enrolled in class — the 2 eldest in junior school. And Aleksander is working to restart his profession promoting and putting in wallpaper. They even adopted a brand new cat, however Agnessa nonetheless felt one factor was nonetheless lacking — their beloved cat, Arsenii. 

As destiny would have it, Bezhenar befriended a flight attendant on the best way to the U.S.. She saved in contact together with her and requested if she knew anybody who might assist.

“I requested her if she is aware of one thing in regards to the cats, how cats can fly and what paperwork cats want. And she or he says, ‘I do not actually learn about this, however my good friend who’s one other flight attendant from Hawaii, she should know the whole lot about that,'” Bezhenar recollects.

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A flight attendant related the household with an animal rescue. Somebody from the rescue was in Greece on trip, and provided to journey to choose up Arsenii and convey him to San Francisco, the place the household reunited with their beloved pet.

Maria Bezhenar


That second flight attendant knew individuals who labored for an animal rescue. They contacted somebody from the rescue, who was already in Europe on trip. She volunteered to tack on some additional journey — to choose up Arsenii, bringing him to all the best way to California.

“She simply determined to journey to Bucharest to do the whole lot wanted for the cat, and he or she introduced the cat again to Greece and from Greece to Montreal and from Montreal to Seattle and from Seattle to San Francisco. That was an extended journey,” Bezhenar mentioned.

This time, the Bezhenar household have been those ready on the airport with indicators: “Welcome house Arsenii.” Agnessa cried tears of pleasure.

They left many issues behind in Ukraine, however in California, they gained household. “We’re surrounded by good individuals right here,” Bezhenar mentioned. 

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