As Ukraine is set to mark two years since Russia’s Feb. 24, 2022, invasion of Ukraine, two female students at the Nihongo Center, a Japanese language school in Kyoto that accepts evacuees, have embarked on different career plans in Japan — with one looking to enter vocational school in April and another aiming to secure a job.

However, despite their differing paths, they both have echoed the same refrain: "I want the war to end as soon as possible so I can see my family.”

“At first, I thought it would be over in about three days,” recalled Anastasiia Pelykh, 24, a native of Kryvyi Rih in central Ukraine, reflecting on her initial reaction to the Russian invasion of her country.