Dear Soyuzianky,

If you observe the eastern rite calendar, happy St. Nicholas Day! This will be the last newsletter of 2022 – enjoy the digital copies of it at Thank you for reading, sharing, and offering your comments and suggestions – we are looking forward to meeting you again in 2023!

Oksana Bilozir, a singer and a tireless supporter of our humanitarian mission in Ukraine, helped to deliver supplies for vacuum wound closure systems (commonly known as “wound vacs”) to a military hospital in Kyiv today. A single wound vac device covers the most gaping wound and helps it heal faster and infection-free. Yet these life-saving devices require supplies to work, including dressings which have to be changed every 2-3 days. 

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We are grateful for each donation that helps wounded Ukrainian soldiers and civilians heal faster! And many thanks to Mrs. Oksana Bilozir and Mrs. Valentyna Tabaka, UNWLA’s 2nd VP, for their work in bringing urgently needed medical aid to Ukraine.

In April, the UNWLA started the “Urgently Needed Medical Aid to Ukraine” campaign to deliver wound vac devices and external fixators to Ukrainian hospitals. Since February 24, 2022, we have received over $2 million in donations; the retail value of the goods sent to Ukraine (many of them either donated or purchased at a great discount) is estimated at over $22 million.

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In the spirit of St. Nicholas Day, this week’s spotlight goes to Honorary Branch 1 (New York, NY) for two artistic events it recently held. Soyuzianky from New York invited a newly arrived Ukrainian artist and graphic designer, Olesya Ilina, for a creative workshop. Participants of all ages had a lot of fun creating their own St. Nicholas day cards. The $95 raised at the event supported the “Keep Ukraine Warm” campaign.
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Photo credit: Alexandra Brenyo

Last Friday, Branch 1 welcomed everyone to an exhibition opening of a talented artist, soyuzianka Nastasia Shygaieva. The program included an opening reception, reading of the illustrator’s book for kids, and the “Bags and Brushes” workshop. The exhibition will officially close on December 30th, at 3 pm EST.

On January 20th, the Ukrainian Museum in NYC, founded by the UNWLA, will unveil a special exhibit dedicated to showcasing the captivating works of renowned Lemko artist Nikifor. He is considered to be one of the world’s finest outsider artists of his time. Born with a hearing and speech impediment and orphaned during World War I, Nikifor found himself isolated both physically and emotionally for most of his life. Art became an outlet, a focus for his life. Throughout his vast body of drawings, Nikifor interweaves classic landscapes and memories. Each drawing offers a kaleidoscope of both the familiar and the unfamiliar.

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When we sing traditional carols, we share the good news about the birth of Christ, as well as good wishes for the year to come. This year, our hopes for peace, light, and victory need our voices even more! So on Christmas Day, December 25th, we invite you to join the “Svitova Koliada” flash mob!

In your family, community, Branch, or Regional Council – sing «Schedryk» (“Carol of the Bells”) to wish the world merry Christmas, and thank everyone who supports the Ukrainian people.

To join the flash mob:

  • record a video and publish it on your social media page;
  • tag @svitovakolyada and @unwla in your post;
  • be sure to add hashtags #СвітоваКоляда and #UNWLA;

Let’s sing together on December 25th! Let’s unite the world with this famous Ukrainian carol!

If you know somebody (or maybe, even you?) with a “volunteer more” New Year resolution, the UNWLA is looking for volunteers to help us with our national initiatives. Development, training, marketing and research – volunteer your skills and expand your portfolio! This invitation is open for both UNWLA members and non-members. Fill in the application form here: UNWLA Volunteer Sign-Up Form