Since its inception in 1949, the Ukrainian Council of NSW (UCNSW or ОУГ) has had as its mission to be a strong coordinating body representing all Ukrainians in NSW. Originally its members were all the hromady in NSW. This initially worked well, but in recent decades hromady membership has shrunk and many ceased to operate. Hence, it became essential that UCNSW restructure and enable active Ukrainian organisations to join.
For these reasons, in 2020 important amendments were made to the UCNSW Constitution regarding quorum numbers and membership. These changes have been formally adopted and then registered with NSW Fair Trading. UCNSW delegates currently represent the following organisations in NSW:
- Ukrainian Association of Cabramatta/Fairfield (Hromada)
- Plast NSW
- Ukrainian Catholic Church St Andrews Parish
- Ukrainian Free Kozaks
- Ukrainian Orthodox Church Strathfield Parish
- Ukrainian Women’s Association of NSW
- Ukrainian Youth Association (СУМ) Sydney
Taken in this context our recent AGM in February 2021 was an historic meeting, in that we now have a broader and rejuvenated membership. The AGM had a 97% attendance rate of member delegates, with interest from a number of other organisations seeking to join. The challenge now is to harness the potential of these reforms.
Our objective is for UCNSW to remain the umbrella organisation for all Ukrainians in NSW and to work collaboratively with all member organisations to:
- Promote Ukrainian culture and language.
- Be an effective lobby on Ukrainian matters to Government and the broader community.
- Strengthen participation at all events, programs and projects.
The newly elected Executive Committee is:
- Andrew Mencinsky IT and Social Media Officer
- Bohdan Wolody President & Public Officer
- Galyna Alyokhina Delegate Relations
- Julian Grodzicky Treasurer
- Luba Kaye Secretary
- Marko Shumsky Vice President, Legal and Govt. Relations
- Olya Moskviak Events Coordinator
- Stephen Duma PR and Ukrainian Affairs
- Veronica Necyporuk Press and Communications
Audit Committee: Wal Woytowich (head), Stephania Tesoriero and Lesia Bubniuk.
This Committee will continue the good work of 2019 and 2020, which despite COVID-19 saw many innovations and successes, including:
- Online concerts eg. Ukrainian Independence Day 2020 (almost 700 views) and Sviato Shevchenka 2021 (over 220 views)
- UkiFest 2019 (over 600 attendees)
- Malanka 2020 (220 guests)
- Commemoration of Holodomor and MH17 events
- Supporting the Ukraine Crisis Appeal
- Organising community meeting with doctors and the Ministry of Health
- Sponsorship of Ukrainian Film Festivals
- Collaboration with СУОА to roll out the “Art of Lockdown” program and…
- Regular committee meetings using online platforms instead of face-to-face.
The next twelve months will provide us the opportunity to build on what we have achieved as things return to normal. It will be important for us to get together as a community and engage with each other. We will also be seeking to reform relations with the Sydney Hromada and the Ukrainian Central School, which we continue to support.
It will be an exciting time for our Ukrainian community