A married couple from Santa Rosa came to pick up their children and got stuck in Ukraine

The couple is staying in Kyiv since March 12 as a consequence of quarantine. They had twins with the help of surrogacy, after five unsuccessful attempts. Previously, the couple wanted to adopt a child, but it went unsuccessfully.

“We have no idea when we can get back home”, says a trauma surgeon from Santa Rosa, Ivan Costa, who is stuck since March 12 with his new family in Kyiv, Ukraine, a small Eastern European country.

The couple flew there in order to become parents after a long surrogacy process. Surrogate motherhood, gestational surrogacy, surrogate pregnancy, rent-a-womb (these are our tags for surrogacy) is a practice in which a woman gets pregnant, carries the fetus for a certain period of time and gives birth to one or more children for another person or couple who become their parents under a financial contract.

Ivan, together with his partner, Jimena Holgado, are the new parents of twins, who are almost two months old, and they strictly hide their origin.

“It’s been eight years since we’ve been together … my señora has a son, Juan Ignacio,” Ivan said at the beginning of our WhatsApp interview with El Diario.

“We’ve been through an oncological disease that led to infertility but now we are in good health. At some point, we decided on adoption, but without success. One day, we learned about the Biotexcom clinic in Ukraine upon the recommendation of our friend, ” he explains about what treatment they decided to undergo.

“Finally, we went there in 2018, we had 5 negative attempts until we were informed about the twins’ birth date at the end of March.
But as everything gained speed, we arrived in Ukraine on the 12th of March, ”added Ivan.

They never imagined the situation they would have to cope with while observing quarantine in the face of the global threat of the coronavirus pandemic.

“We had a Despegar Airlines return ticket on April 23rd of KLM Airline Company. However, the company suspended the flight until June, and Despegar acted rather badly with us … They didn’t give us the information, and we almost lost the ticket, “Ivan said.

“Then we bought other ARG airline tickets, which were advised through WhatsApp, and we were confirmed with the return date on May 16, they said that the flight would happen for sure. We bought the ticket and in 20 minutes we received an email which informed us that the ticket was canceled and the departure was rescheduled on June 2, ” he added.

“Ultimately, everything was postponed till September, and we still don’t know whether we can use these tickets,” Ivan said.

A trauma surgeon from Santa Rosa said that “the children received an Argentinean passport issued by the Argentine Embassy here… We even filled out questionnaires about returning to our homeland and will be waiting for news regarding flights. There are more than 30 Argentinean couples in a situation similar to ours, some of them are already with their new-born babies.

– What did the embassy do for you?
– The embassy treated us well… But Ukraine is one of the quite remote countries.

– And where are you living there now?
– We stopped at an apartment of the clinic in Kyiv, in the Sofievsky district. The truth is that we feel very comfortable, but from May 12 we will have to fend for ourselves until we leave home.

– What do you do there every day, or what can you do?
– We are also in quarantine… We only go out for food.

– Do you risk losing your job here?
– No, I just do not work now… I stopped my activities in February… Since I am an individual entrepreneur, I do not earn money.

“Ridiculous” proposals

Although the chances of a return are decreasing now, proposals to return before the adoption of a new resolution, according to which flights are rescheduled for September, were “ridiculous”, says Ivan Costa.

“For example,” he said, “we had to pay for a charter to Qatar, then to São Paulo and stay there because there are no flights to Ezeiza from that place. Another proposal was to fly from here to Frankfurt and that’s all… ”

“My children are almost two months old and now we have to get their shots… We will wait a little longer because before the third month it can be done without any problems, but … time is running out. And the cost of living here in a European country is more expensive”, he added.

A trauma surgeon from Santa Rosa admitted that “the case of Ukraine is very specific … in Spain, in France, where there are more Argentines, repatriation is much more accessible. (This is a small country, and it’s harder to get to.”)

“The medical college gave me a subsidy for two months, and now we have a chance to get another one for two months… So now we are more or less in control of the situation. But we must make sure that our case is noticed and that we gain a small priority, and that Ukraine is not the last place to look for help, “he added.