lost childhood

photo from the interview with Lavrentiya Khariv

The XX century is rightfully considered to be the era of totalitarianism. Alternately, the Nazi and communist regimes used mass violence against their opponents, separate social groups, and entire communities to achieve ideological, political, and geopolitical goals.

The repressive practices of both systems had total character and covered almost the whole society: men and women, old and young, adults and children. Out of all the victims of totalitarian violence, children were perhaps the most vulnerable group.

Considering their psychological characteristics, they were extremely saddened by imprisonment, deportations, loss of relatives and home, etc. In addition, children were the subject of political genocide. Until recently, children were a marginal object of historical research. Their experience of surviving under the extreme violence circumstances has not been of much interest to historians and the general public.

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The Territory of Terror

The Territory of Terror Memorial Museum of Totalitarian Regimes is a memorial museum in Lviv created on the site that was part of the Jewish ghetto, the third largest in Nazi-occupied Europe from 1941 to 1943, and a transit prison in 1944–1955. , one of the largest Soviet institutions of such detention on the territory of modern Ukraine.

The museum is an example of the memorialization of the controversial legacy left after World War II and the collapse of the Soviet Union.


about colleagues

Yaroslav Bartoshyk

“They packed us in as if we were some sort of cattle. That was scary”

Galyna Golovetska (Korduba)

“At that time, I was happy to be leaving because I could skip school”

Ganna Stefanyuk

“Get you belongings packed, you are moving out”

Roman Zaverukha

“As we were going home, we wrote into snow: Hurray! Stalin is dead!” - Life in deportation

Yulia Nykolyn

“We remain here - as continuation of our parents, a continuation of their history, their memory”

Oleksandra (Lesya) Krypyakevych (Tsehelska)

Activist and volunteer Lesya Krypyakevych: father’s arrest and lost childhood

Lavrentiya Khariv

"As a child, I was deported to Siberia. As an adult, I help others through volunteering"

Iryna Lashchevska (Lukashevych)

” “Tomorrow” lasted 25 years”

Halyna Reshetnyk

The daughter of the UPA commander

Volodymyr Shvets

"It`s me, and you`re - my mother"

Sofiya Zubrytska

The stigma of “the deported one” turned into a duty to be better

Oleksiy Zakharkiv

“I thought Siberia was my homeland”

Mariya Shovhenyuk

Story of double deportation

Stepan Prytula

“The day the war started, I was sitting on a cherry tree"

Mykola Kostyshyn

Employment record book in memory of Siberia

Bohdan Kostelnyi

"Horses were taken away, and people were housed in stables"

Darya Hermak

“She had to be shot. Why has she been sent here?

Yuriy Zirchenko

“They bring up Janizary there”

Orest-Myroslav Savchuk

“We had wolf tickets*” *(passport issued to politically unreliable persons)

Olha Shadna (Vatral)

“I saw an apple only in the picture”

Olha Kohutkevych

“You are here forever”* [* phrase in Russian]

Hanna Ivantsova

“My childhood ended so suddenly”

Ivan Kardash

coming to school riding dogs

Oleksandr Lasovskyi

“Our family was sent off…"

Liubov-Olesksandra Bilinska (Semenko)

“Along the road young people were singing, then crying, then singing again”

Zenoviya Strochan

“We were gradually turning wild”

Areta Blavatska

"I took a feather as a souvenir, for it was beautiful"

Vasyl Lesyshyn

”Everyone was in the same conditions, in the same fetters and under the same supervision of Soviet secret service”

Liubomyra Melnyk

“Hush your puppy or I’ll shoot her”

Yaroslav Hera

“They said in 1950: “Kolkhoz or Siberia”

Post Bellum team

about post bellum

Post Bellum is a Czech educational non-profit organization based in Prague. The organization was formed in 2001 by a group of historians and journalists to expand public knowledge about the history of the Czech Republic and neighboring countries of the 20th century, especially among the younger generations.

Post Bellum has gathered thousands of witnesses to interview people who have lived through significant periods of history as part of their 20th Century History project and for their Memory of Nations online archive. They organize various other projects and events to raise awareness of modern history. The stated goal of the organization is to “understand the past


we invite volunteers to cooperate!

you can become a volunteer and help team with the project lost childhood.