Stephan Chomyn OAM
My name is Stephan Chomyn and I’ve just been elected to the executive of the Australian Federation of Ukrainian Organisations (AFUO), to assist with community development.
Our Ukrainian communities here in Australia are amazing, and we need to acknowledge the hard work of our forefathers and the past generations for their commitment, energy and foresight to build and support our Ukrainian communities here in Australia.
Times are changing, the world is changing, and so many people have passed on. We need to focus on; how to preserve and reinvigorate what we have here in Australia, how to encourage and incorporate new ideas and all people who are motivated to take part and build up our communities so that our future generations can have the opportunity to experience our wonderful Ukrainian community fellowship.
We want all Ukrainians who reside here in Australia to be involved in Ukrainian communities in whichever state they live in, and to become active participants of that community.
People love to belong to and associate with people of like minds and similar backgrounds. We have so many talented people in our communities, we want them to share their company and their talents with fellow Ukrainian Australians.
I have been President of the Ukrainian Community of Queensland since 1999. In my time I have seen many changes, and been involved in all aspects of our Ukrainian community life, and the Ukrainian Catholic Church in Brisbane. I have led our community through selling up our Community Centre (our home for more than 60 years) to now acquiring our new Community Centre. These are exciting times, a new era for all Ukrainians to be part of. I’m looking forward to what the future holds and the involvement of our people in setting up our community for the future, and future generations.
My interests lie in the ongoing development of AFUO and in particular our communities here in Australia. “Hromady” play an important role in Australian Society as well as the Diaspora and Ukraine. We need to ensure we strengthen this, not only for our own future, but also to be able to continue to assist Ukraine.
We need to understand and to address the challenges of our time, and what our communities are facing, the different stakeholders and members in our community, embrace these and all of them, and identify new opportunities and make the most of them. It’s about stimulating our Ukrainian Australian communities to be more active, relevant and effective.
I am proud to be a Ukrainian Australian. I love everything about being Ukrainian. The food, the culture, the language and the music. I enjoy singing and also playing Ukrainian songs on the accordion.
To see our State Ukrainian Community organisations (our Hromady) flourish, and be the best they can be.
By building healthy and vibrant Ukrainian communities with strong values that are relevant and inclusive, that preserve our culture, language and identity, this will ensure our existence into the future and ensure the ongoing respect of the broader community.