The first B50 volunteer camp in 2024

The B50 community started the summer energetically and interestingly: activists from the Clean Up! project organized the first volunteer camp of the year: they spent two days dismantling a destroyed house and spending the night in open-air tents in the village of Potashnia, Bucha district.

Potashnia is a small village in the Kyiv region whose population before the war barely exceeded 200 people. As a result of hostile shelling, 136 buildings out of 430 existing buildings were damaged, 113 of which were completely destroyed or severely damaged. According to preliminary estimates by Rebuildua and the Kyiv School of Economics, the total direct damage to the village’s buildings is about $4.9 million! This amount does not include all the losses to local businesses and damage to private property. To reduce this damage and help people clean up the destroyed houses to start rebuilding them as soon as possible, B50 volunteers set out to help.


In Potashnia, our activists had a number of tasks:

  • clear the floor of the house, dismantle the walls;
  • clear the remains of the stove and dismantle the walls, but keep the wall that is part of the cellar;
  • clear the garage, which is divided into three sections.

The B50 volunteers did it in two days:

  • clear one of the three sections of the garage;
  • remove the remains of the stove and dismantle the remains of the walls near it;
  • clean up one third of the house.

The volunteers who spent the night in Potashnia were joined by those who could come for one day.

The participants share their impressions of the volunteer camp.

Coordinator of the trip Anastasiia Baranova:

It was my easiest trip so far. Firstly, we had all the lists: tools for work, things for the camp, what was needed from the volunteers and from me. Secondly, we had an understanding of where we were going to spend the night, where to get tents, sleeping bags, mats, how we would be accommodated, what food to take.

The variety of weather was a new challenge for us, and we easily withstood it together) Although one tent was completely leaking and the other partially, so we had to cram in more crowded conditions. But it didn’t spoil our mood, it only added to our understanding of how to act in such situations and that two-layer tents are better)) As for me, it’s harder to come two days in a row. Sleeping in the camp adds a certain amount of vibe and strength to it all. And coffee in the morning in a gazebo with like-minded people is worth a lot.

Oleksandr Prokofiev:

The rain was not very heavy (at least while we were outside the tents) and did not dampen my mood personally. Mosquitoes and bugs were a much bigger problem, in my opinion. Although they couldn’t spoil the mood either. I really enjoyed this trip and had a lot of good impressions.

It was my first experience of spending the night in a tent in the rain, so I was primarily curious. Of course, the second day you are more tired, but it works the same way when you spend 2 days in a row in Moshchun.

Yanina Kobets:

For me, the weather is never an obstacle to volunteering. Coming two days in a row… It’s morally easier to wake up a little later in the camp, plus it’s close to the location. The fatigue of the second day does not depend on where you spend the night. It’s just that the second day in a row is always physically harder to work, but sleeping near the location has its own advantage))

Oleksandr Treshchev:

The occasional rain and the fact that it was soaring the next day did not add to the discomfort, but it was not critical. It was a little harder to spend the night because it was hot and I wanted to take a bath. Swimming in the lake is very relaxing))

Oleksandr Tishura:

The weather did not prevent us from doing a lot of work and having a good time at the campsite. The nighttime downpour, on the contrary, added romance and extreme. Camping trips are useful because on the second day you can quickly get to the location next to the campsite. But personally, I have less energy on the second day. On two-day trips, this is somehow imperceptible: I manage to recover almost completely at home in the evening.

Polina Koruts:

The weather was in all its glory. The heat was scorching, and the nightly downpour was impressive. But this did not discourage me personally from working. On the contrary, it was a kind of quest))) But the mosquitoes were terrible!!!

As for me, a two-day trip with an overnight stay is better than traveling back and forth. Because the road takes energy. Plus, overnight stays are a nice way to socialize with cool people))) On the second one we were not so active, we were tired. The heat also affected us. But our enthusiasm did not leave us))) We rallied and did the job!

This is a completely different job than sheltering. It’s a bigger, more physically active job. But at the same time, it is very emotionally charged. As my friend said, it’s better than going to a psychologist.

Victoria Oblapenko:

Personally, the weather did not spoil my mood) On the contrary, I joke that the downpour and thunder added to the romance and gave a full experience of spending the night in tents) It was my first time going camping, so all questions and problems were solved by Nastia, Sasha and other volunteers. The only thing was that the tent where Nastia and I were supposed to spend the night started leaking, but Nastia quickly found out what the situation was in other tents, and we just moved in with other volunteers. The rest of the night was uneventful))

It’s easier to come for two days. Previously, I had only gone for one day, so two days in a row was an unusual load for me, plus it was very hot those days, and I have a hard time with high temperatures.

The format of the volunteer camp has once again proved its worth: in two days, the B50 guys and girls worked hard, had a great time, and recharged their batteries for the new work week and for new volunteering. So we will definitely repeat the B50 camp!