Fadey – a 20-year-old refugee from Ukraine – discussed in a recent interview how he escaped his native country with only $2,000 worth of cryptocurrency on a USB port.

Fadey Believes Bitcoin Helped Him Big Time

Fadey woke up one morning several weeks ago to discover the sad news that his country had been invaded by Russia. He realized that the stakes were too high and that he needed to leave fast, as being 20 years old, he was facing conscription and time in the military. However, he couldn’t just pack up a bag and go. He needed two things to do that: a negative COVID test and some money to keep him going.

He said:

I couldn’t withdraw cash at all because the queues to ATMs were so long, and I couldn’t wait that [long].

As he couldn’t access traditional fiat currency, he instead turned to bitcoin and made an exchange with his friend. He had some bitcoin saved on a USB drive and traded about $600 of it for the zloty, the national currency of Poland. This is where he planned to go. He used the money to pay for a bus ticket across the border, a bed in a hostel for himself and his girlfriend, and some additional provisions.

Fadey says he crossed the border just in time as about two hours after he left, Poland closed the border to all men fleeing within the ages of 18 and 60, or rather all men of fighting age. He says he feels truly blessed in that bitcoin is extremely quick and transactions can occur smoothly in just a matter of minutes. He explained:

I could just write my seed phrase on a piece of paper and take it with me.

Crossing the border, he was able to keep his USB port, which still has about $2,000 worth of bitcoin on it. This represents about one quarter of his life savings. He’s grateful that bitcoin does not require a bank or many of the other tools that often bog down the trading experience of traditional financial institutions, and he credits bitcoin with saving his life.

Crypto Has Become a Huge Answer in Ukraine

Ukraine has repeatedly turned to crypto during this time. It has garnered multiple donations in crypto and several everyday users are seeing digital assets as tools for remaining financially stable. Brian Mosoff – CEO of the Toronto-based crypto investment platform Ether Capital – mentioned:

In that part of the world, crypto – despite its volatility, despite the sentiments that the West has towards it – they don’t ask, ‘Why crypto?’ They just ask, ‘How?’ That’s a very powerful thing for a group of people who don’t have financial stability or political stability right now… to be able to hold their net worth in some type of asset or product that essentially can be stored in a password.

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