Ukrainian Refugee's Viral Video Documents Harrowing Escape to Poland

A 20-year-old Ukrainian refugee has documented her journey to Poland in a viral video, dubbing it the "most horrible trip."

Valeria Shashenok became one of the estimated 1.8 million refugees (according to Statista) from Ukraine traveling to Poland, and captured the whole thing in a video, which has now gained over five million views on TikTok.

The young woman had been previously living in a bunker with her family.

Shashenok started her journey at a railway station in Kyiv, where she showed herself aboard a train. "Then come to Lviv and then to Przemysl," she continued, showing herself and others receiving food from volunteers.

"Ukrainian volunteers broke my heart," she noted on-screen. The journey continued with a train to Poland, where she stood for 10 hours.

Five hours at the border followed, before finally being "in Poland for free without a passport." Shashenok showed refugees eating "delicious" vareniki (dumplings) together, as she noted she couldn't "believe that I'm evacuated to Poland."


It’s the most horrible trip! Thanks Russia

♬ Celebrate the Good Times - Mason

The long journey finished with a seven-hour train trip to Lodz, where she was met with a familiar face.

"It's the most horrible trip in my life! Thanks Putin," she wrote on-screen, before offering a sincere thanks to Polish volunteers instead. "Thanks for supporting my country," she wrote.

Although Shashenok has found safety in Poland, her parents are still at their bunker in Ukraine, where she previously built over 800,000 followers on TikTok from with raw videos showing life in a war-torn country.

Videos uploaded by the 20-year-old give millions around the world an insight into life in Ukraine at the moment.

Popular posts include a "typical day in a bomb shelter" video, which she showed herself playing with her dog and drying her hair, only to later visit destroyed buildings and debris-filled streets.


Living my best life 🥰🥰🥰 Thanks Russia! #ukraine #stopwar #russiastop

♬ Che La Luna - Louis Prima

Another video showed how they live in the bunker without electricity, showing their use of candles and lamps, along with heating coffee cups with a flame.

TikTok has been a key communication method in teaching those around the world, especially young people, the realities of the Russian invasion for Ukraine citizens.

However, the popularity of TikTok war content has been a double-edged sword, with misinformation rife. Viral videos take footage from movies or years-old content and redistribute it claiming to be real, for the sake of views and likes.

Misinformation fears go even further too, and TikTok has even banned state-backed Russian media Sputnik and Russia Today in the E.U.

TikTok also told the New York Times that the app would be dedicating more resources to fighting misleading content about the war.