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Colorado hospital delivers Ukrainian refugee's baby free of charge

Medical staff at Centura Littleton Adventist wanted to do something to help Ukrainians
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Posted at 1:20 PM, Jul 29, 2022
and last updated 2022-07-29 17:10:29-04

LITTLETON, Colo.  — Tanya Hill is hosting a complicated family reunion in a Littleton home that proudly flies two flags — the American and the Ukrainian.

"There are currently 11 people in our house," she said with a smile. "That's a full house."

Her niece, Kseniia Malik, fled the war-torn city of Irpin, Ukraine, earlier this year. She was eight months pregnant when she decided to come to the United States with her husband, two young daughters, and teenage brother.

"It was really scary, but we were checking the news every minute," Malik said.

The family traveled from Ukraine to Poland, then to Spain, and then to Mexico before arriving at Hill's home in Littleton.

"It's the best place we can be, except for home," Malik said.

Hill insisted Malik's family stay with her family, saying support from the community helped to make it happen.

"It seemed impossible to bring them here. But every little step of the way, one door opened after the next," Hill said.

Support and baby supplies poured in from friends, family, and even the most unexpected of places.

At Centura Littleton Adventist Hospital, doctors and nurses heard about Malik's journey and the baby on the way and offered free medical services for the mother's labor and delivery.

"I think it's just part of the mission of the Adventist system that we need to take care of people that are in need," said Pamela Constanza, manager of Women's Services and Infants at Centura Littleton Adventist Hospital. "I think we really wanted to do something for somebody in that region, and this was an opportunity that we had that we could jump on."

"[The doctor] invited Kseniia in and said, "There's nothing you have to worry about. We'll cover it all,"" said Hill. "It almost seemed effortless. They just said, "Yes. No problem, we'll do it.""

After months of trauma, Malik says her free-of-charge delivery offered a moment of peace.

"When everything is ruined in your previous life, so all plans or dreams, they were destroyed, the kindness of people is giving you hope," said Malik.

Her baby, Regina, was born in June, weighing 9 pounds and 7 ounces. Malik's hope is that her daughters grow up safe and in a better world. Until then, the family feels like part of the community that is helping them in their time of need.

"In the midst of the madness, in the cruelty of the whole situation that's going on in Ukraine, seeing so much love and support gives you hope the world is not as bad as it may seem at the time," said Hill.

Malik's husband was able to come to the United States for a few months but is now back in Ukraine trying to help other family members. They all hope to be reunited when it is safe.

Jaclyn Allen at KMGH first reported this story.