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'We Are Working No Matter What': This Is Life As An Etsy Seller In Ukraine

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As bombs rain down on Ukraine, Ihor Senchylo continues crafting woodwork by hand for the business he founded in Kyiv with his wife, Alla, a decade ago.

The couple, who have two daughters aged seven and four years old, sold their wooden kitchenware and home decor at local markets before the war began, supplementing their income with their online Etsy store.

But now, as Russia’s invasion continues, their business has been forced to move completely online, with Ihor trying to keep sales afloat while Alla and the children have temporarily fled to Germany.

Their workshop has thankfully survived the bombing, though it’s surrounded by destroyed buildings. Operations are disrupted and sales are down, but Ihor and Alla are still donating part of their profits to the Ukrainian army and humanitarian efforts.

“My husband never held any gun or weapon in his hands, he can‘t fight, but he can do what he does the best: to make beautiful wooden tableware,” Alla, 36, tells HuffPost UK.

“A lot of businesses and shops didn’t resume their work, a lot of our suppliers aren’t at work yet. It’s difficult to fill the car with gasoline. So, there are problems with logistics.”

Items sold on Alla and Ihor's Etsy store, Woodstuffhome

Folk craft is an integral part of traditional Ukrainian culture, so it’s no surprise that Etsy is big business in the country, with more than one million product listings from sellers in Ukraine currently live on the site.

The company has made moves to support its community, including cancelling balances owed by Ukrainian sellers, including advert fees and listing fees, representing almost $4m (£3.3m). But business is still difficult for those now relying on the site more than ever.

Another seller, Svіtlana, from western Ukraine, shares how the war........

© HuffPost

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