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Executive Director, Ukrainian National Federation of Canada, and Interim Director, Ukrainian Canadian Congress

Date and Place of Birth: 1951 in Toronto, Ontario.

Date of Interview: July 15 2016

Place of Interview: Toronto, Ontario

Interviewer:  Kassandra Luciuk

Length of Interview: 01:11:41


Very much growing up, I think I was typical of a lot of Ukrainian youth, or Ukrainian Canadian youth, growing up, where you had this split personality. You know, you were sort of one person at school and you wanted so to fit in, and yet, the minute you came home, you spoke Ukrainian to your parents and your activities were very much within the Ukrainian family. You know, I probably did some volleyball and tournaments with my school groups, etc. etc., but my Saturdays were spent at, you know, if not Ukrainian school then CYM, and a dance class, or a choir or something. Of course, we had the famous Pan Holubko mandolin and accordion lessons at, you know, Bathurst Street church in the hall there. So everything was pretty well related around the Ukrainian community and that really was a huge part of who you were and who you became. I recall later going to high school and thinking, wow, you know you want to be like the kids that have a school uniform and, you know, aren’t always part of sort of something Ukrainian. And I think a lot of kids pulled away that that point. I can’t say that…for me, my sort of entrenchment within the Ukrainian community was very firm, though, you know, there was always this feeling of this Canadian side that you don’t really fit into 100% just yet.


Press Release: for appointment as Interim Executive Director of the Ukrainian Canadian Congress


excerpt from the Interview with OLYA GROD

The interviews can be accessed at the UCRDC. Please contact us at: office@ucrdc.org