HOUGHTON, Mich. (WJMN) – Friday marks one year since Russia began a full-scale invasion of Ukraine. Members of Yoopers for Ukraine gathered at Michigan Tech for a vigil and moment of silence on Friday in support of Ukraine and its citizens. Members say while it’s important to recognize the year of conflict, mistreatment of Ukrainian people has been happening for much longer.

“It’s one year since the full scale invasion of Ukraine, but actual war has been going on for much more longer,” said Adelina Oronova, Co-Founder of Yoopers for Ukraine. “We are talking even like not nine years but centuries. Centuries of oppression by Russians. So now, this date is just devastating for Ukrainian people and we wanted to make sure that it’s not something that will get passed by because unfortunately Ukraine is not always making the frontlines of newspapers anymore.”

Oronova says while the war might not be on the front of everyone’s mind, they are still thankful for community support here in the UP.

“We started doing all of this to bring people who want to help Ukraine together and with our events we always want to keep Ukraine on people’s minds. And we think that with our weekly walks and multiple activities that we’ve been doing throughout the last year, we’ve been successful with that. And unfortunately, it seems that you have to keep Ukraine in people’s minds for longer until the victory is out there. So we will be doing that until the war is over and our hope is that it will happen sooner than later.”

You can learn more about getting involved by connecting with ‘Yoopers for Ukraine’ on Facebook.