Life in War: Launch of a New Media Platform in Ukraine

Documenting Ukraine

The Life in War team are Yevhenii Safonov, the editor-in-chief; Daniel Lekhovitser, the deputy editor-in-chief; and Korniy Hrytsiuk, the video editor. 

Life in War is a media outlet for those who are concerned about the events around them and seek to understand how the war is changing our society, ourselves and the circumstances in which we build our lives. We believe that such self-reflection will contribute to mutual understanding among Ukrainians.

Our tools are field reporting, social research, and studying the experience of other wars. The editorial staff will not hunt for sensitive stories as such, but instead, human accounts of Ukrainians will become an important source for us to understand the topics we are researching. Since the main events that determine the future of the country are taking place at the front, Life in War will regularly publish war reports.

Among the materials already published are an article about the shortage of prostheses that awaits the world’s most mined country; a report from Kyiv’s Death Cafe where visitors help each other get rid of their fears; a study of the psychic services market, which has experienced huge growth during the war; and a photo report from a prison where collaboration suspects are being held.

The Life in War YouTube channel features a series of conversations with military personnel about their worst memories from the war, a video essay from the Kyiv railway station, and a documentary about a punk Koliada used by residents of Ivano-Frankivsk to honor the memory of a fallen soldier,” explains Yevhenii Safonov, editor-in-chief.

During the war, there are many events in the country that need to be recorded. The Life in War video editorial team is open to cooperation with authors who work with video and want to tell an important story in one format or another: interviews, reports, documentaries, archival materials,” tells Korniy Hrytsiuk, video editor.

Since the full-scale invasion, our organization [PIJL] has focused on documenting war crimes within The Reckoning Project, as well as working for international media. But the war against Ukraine is not limited to this. The Life in War platform was launched to archive the present for the future, particularly for historians. But at this stage, it is important for us in Ukraine not only to draw the world’s attention to Russian atrocities, but also to see each other better, to analyze what is happening to our society. Quality journalism can do this, but there is never enough of it,” says Nataliya Gumenyuk, co-founder and executive director of the PIJL.

Yevhenii Safonov is a journalist, former editor-in-chief of Bird in Flight, and editor-in-chief of He is also a co-founder of the Ukrainian Warchive, a photo archive of the Russo-Ukrainian War. 

Korniy Hrytsiuk is a Ukrainian director and screenwriter. He is the author of the documentary films Eurodonbas (2023), The Train: Kyiv - War (2020), the documentary series We Will Rebuild on 1+1 TV channel (2022), and the pseudo-documentary 20/20 Deserted Country (2018). He has participated in many international film festivals, such as Hot Docs (Canada), Molodist (Ukraine), Artdocfest (Latvia), FilmFestival Cottbus (Germany), and Man in Danger (Poland). He is the showrunner of the audio series Kurenivka: The Story of the Kyiv Flood and The Pendulum: Life and Football of Valeriy Lobanovskyi on the Megogo OTT/VOD platform.

Public Interest Journalism Lab promotes constructive discussion of complex social issues through high-quality content. We create, research, and popularize the best practices of public interest journalism in the digital age.

Documenting Ukraine, a program of the Institute for Human Sciences (IWM) in Vienna, aids professionals in Ukraine who work on documentary projects to establish and preserve a factual record of the Russo-Ukrainian War, or give meaning to events through artistic interpretation and intellectual reflection.