Canada Ukraine Foundation

Projects

From Coast to Coast 2017

The Holodomor National Awareness Tour (HNAT) continued its travels across Canada this past summer, engaging communities and schools about the Holodomor, the famine genocide of 1932 – 1933.

From Southwestern Ontario to the Maritime Provinces to Vancouver Island and back to Ontario, the Holodomor Mobile Classroom (HMC) has been on the road this summer since July visiting, communities throughout Canada, many for the first time – Moncton NB, St. John NB, Halifax NS, Sydney NS, Prince Edward Island, Victoria, Vancouver and Richmond BC. Visitors to the HMC at community events continued to express their gratitude for the opportunity to learn about this tragedy while questioning how the Holodomor was hidden for so long. Visitors viewed the following on board the HMC: The Holodomor Story (adapted from “Soviet Story” by Edvins Snore), Ariadna Ochrymovych’s Voices of Survivors, the Ukrainian Canadian Research and Documentation Centre’s Harvest of Despair, Canada-Ukraine Foundation’s Stalin’s Secret Genocide and the newest release Hunger for Truth: The Rhea Clyman Story. These documentaries tell the Holodomor story from different perspectives. Some focus on survivors’ testimonies, while others feature leading historians and most importantly showing archival documents and film footage uncovered since the early 80’s.

The Holodomor National Awareness Tour continues to engage students throughout Canada with a one-hour interactive lesson. During this lesson students become “detective researchers” looking at artifacts to get a better understanding of what was happening during the time of the Holodomor. Learning about a past atrocity can prepare students to take a stand in preventing them from happening today.

The Holodomor National Awareness Tour is currently working on a second lesson, Breaking the Sound Barrier, which develops the students’ critical thinking skills to understand the importance of standing up against misinformation that is prevalent in today’s media. Canada’s values of social justice, tolerance, equity and human rights are highly regarded throughout the world, and it is up to our youth to safeguard them for everyone in the future.

Since the Holodomor National Awareness Tour took to the road two years ago, over 24,000 students, teachers and members of the public have been on board the HMC. In 2017 alone over 13,000 people have visited the Holodomor Mobile Classroom. Our journey of Holodomor awareness continues across Canada, ensuring that the story is told and never forgotten. May the memories of those who died be eternal.

Restoring a Life – Sunnybrook’s Ukrainian Humanitarian Initiative

The Canada-Ukraine Foundation initiated the Canada-Ukraine Surgery Mission Program in 2014. The aim is to treat those most profoundly affected by the war and to equip Ukrainian medical professionals with the skills and resources to care for them. After the last mission in 2017, two individuals were identified who needed ...
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Rehabilitation Retreats for Families

Rehabilitation Retreats for Families Affected by the Antі-Terrorist Operation (ATO) in Eastern Ukraine. In April 2014, Canada-Ukraine Foundation (CUF) initiated and conducted a needs-assessment in Ukraine to identify optimal means of addressing the medical requirements of those affected by the Euromaidan protests. While the primary management of injured patients was ...
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Canadian Doctors Rebuild Bodies Shattered by War in Ukraine

Medical mission sees volunteers providing reconstructive surgery to wounded soldiers and civilians A team of 20 Canadian medical professionals, including surgeons, anesthetists, and nurses, are in Ukraine on a mission to offer reconstructive surgery to soldiers and civilians wounded in the conflict in the country’s eastern regions. Dr. Steve McCabe ...
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CUF’s New Medical Mission Starts in Ukraine: New Challenges and New Goals

Canada-Ukraine Foundation’s (CUF) medical missions in Ukraine have been widely popularised by Victor Malarek on the CTV’s W5 show. Since 2014, CUF has sponsored four missions and the fifth mission to Ukraine started on February 25, 2017. Within the CUF missions, Canadian surgeons and nurses have completed 244 operations on ...
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Kyiv Mohyla University Project – Naukma

After several years of initial efforts by the Friends of NAUKMA, CUF took over the management of all Canadian support for the Kyiv Mohyla Institute, now the National Kyiv-Mohyla University. Very significant funds have been directed over the years, to the development of this celebrated University. This support continues today.
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Melania Kovaluk Memorial Fund Scholarships Project

This Memorial Fund, setup with CUF and USUF, privately funded by the descendants of the late Melania Kovaluk, provides yearly scholarships to about 8-13 high school graduates from Melania Kovaluk’s home village of Zabolotivtsi, who pursue studies at a higher level. It is managed out of Ottawa. This type of ...
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COSBILD Scholarship Fund To Ivan Franko University, Lviv

This Fund, set up by with CUF by COSBILD, a Toronto-based Investment Club, provides three yearly scholarships to students of Ivan Franko University in Lviv. Originally, it provided support for the Faculty of Theatrical Studies at the same university. This type of fund is again an excellent example of how ...
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Project Liubov – Love

Project Liubov-Love (in short form PLL) was created in 2001 as a Western Canadian community based project to assist impoverished children and youth in Ukraine. PLL especially assists “the poorest of the poor” in orphanages, homes for street kids, schools and school residences (“internaty”) and rehabilitation and medical centers. The ...
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Ukrainian Catholic Patriarchal Sobor in Kyiv

In July 2013, the Canada-Ukraine Foundation (CUF) was approached by 10 Ukrainian Canadian organizations to assist in raising funds within the Ukrainian Canadian community for the completion of the Ukrainian Catholic Patriarchal Sobor in Kyiv. The Patriarchal Cathedral of the Resurrection of Christ has become the ecclesiastical seat of the Ukrainian Greek ...
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After a Year of Care in Canada, Triple Amputee Returns to Ukraine

In 2015, Mykola Nyzhnykovskyi arrived in Canada a triple amputee. He returned to Ukraine a year later a “cyborg."

That’s what his sister called him after seeing him outfitted with state-of-the-art prosthetic legs and arms he’s now using thanks to the hard work and generosity of a diverse group of Canadians.

W5 first met the 11 year old Mykola in Kyiv while reporting on the work of Canadian medical professionals who volunteered to treat victims of the war that’s been raging in Ukraine’s east since 2014.

*Triple amputee Mykola Nyzhnykovskyi plays table top hockey with Montreal Canadiens forward Brendan Gallagher (Brett Mitchell / W5)

At that time, Canadian surgeons removed shrapnel that had been lodged in Mykola’s face months earlier in a deadly blast that took his brother’s life. The boys had been fooling around with an unexploded munition left carelessly on an artillery range in the village of Volodarske about fifty kilometres from the front line of the military conflict.

Mykola was one of dozens of patients treated during the wartime medical missions organized by the Canada Ukraine Foundation (CUF). When Shriners Children’s Hospital in Montreal learned about Mykola’s plight, they decided to extend a healing hand to the child.

What followed was a year of care in Montreal, as Mykola and his mother Alla made the journey to a distant land whose language they did not speak.

Nine different medical specialists tended to his many ailments, more than five hundred hours of care were dedicated to his recovery, led by Shriners’ Chief of Staff Dr. Reggie Hamdy.

His physiotherapist, Rochelle Rein, recalled first meeting Mykola: “He was kind of curled into himself. Hard to express, but he was just very alone,” she told W5’s Victor Malarek.

Occupational therapist Sarah Cachecho had the job of helping right-handed Mykola learn to use his left hand and a new prosthetic arm. By the end of his year in Montreal, his progress was remarkable. Mykola had grown bigger, stronger and more determined than ever to master his prosthetics and walk again.

“Mykola can now dress himself, feed himself, brush his teeth, do whatever someone has to do in their daily life,” Cachecho said.

Krystina Waler, CUF’s director of humanitarian initiatives, says Mykola is very fortunate, because he’d never had received the same level of care in Ukraine.

“Rehabilitation there would have been non-existent, the physiotherapy, the occupational therapy,” Waler explained.

Shriners covered all the medical costs, while CUF arranged accommodations, travel, food and translators through donations and volunteer work.

“To watch life being brought back into him has been an amazing journey and I can’t wait to continue watching it,” said Waler.

Mykola and Alla returned to Ukraine in late 2016, but the Canadians are not done with him yet. He’ll be back at Shriners in Montreal every year for check-ups and new fittings for his prosthetics. And the doctors of CUF’s fifth medical mission to Kyiv in February 2017 will continue working on the scars on Mykola’s face.

Nobody can bring his brother Danyo back, but Canadian generosity and hospitality did help bring back two things that weren’t there when W5 first met Mykola: hope and a smile.

Steve Bandera, W5 Associate Producer
Published Friday, February 3, 2017
Please click here to see online CTV news report