Oleksandra Novikova – Vicinity

Oleksandra Novikova

Sasha, a humanitarian worker and founder of Help Ukraine GR, has been living in Greece for nearly a decade. She holds degrees in applied linguistics, early childhood education, theology, and culture. Sasha has been volunteering with the Ukrainian community in Athens since the start of the conflict in her homeland. Her dedication to supporting Ukrainians led her to establish Help Ukraine GR, an informational portal for Ukrainians and about Ukraine in Greece, serving as a valuable resource for both the Ukrainian community in Greece and anyone interested in learning about Ukraine.


Sasha named her project “Vicinity”, a word that means closeness and neighborhood. Her project focuses on two young teenagers who arrived in Athens from Ukraine due to the war in their country. Sasha organized a day to show them around the city and capture their stories through film photography.

“Due to the war in Ukraine, people were forced to flee their homes and their feelings. In my project, I wanted to show how fragile the friendship between two young teenagers who found themselves in Athens can be. As an individual of migrant background myself, I wanted to share with them a beautiful day discovering several dreamy places of the Greek capital through film photography and, of course, to share my personal experience of how I found myself once being separated from my beloved ones,” Sasha explained. They spent a day together climbing the highest place in the city center: Lycabettus Hill. Sasha wanted to show them their new host place, their new neighborhood, and made sure that the two teenagers felt the city’s heartbeat.