Holodomor Awareness Week in Canada

In Grade 10, my English teacher asked the class if anyone knew about the Holodomor. No one raised their hand.

This famine-genocide from 1932 to 1933 affected millions of Ukrainians. I first learned about it at the Ukrainian dance school I attended. The president at the time went around to each class telling us about the tragedy and handing out wheat pins to wear to honour those affected.

This was before my English teacher asked us about the event, yet I still didn’t raise my hand for a couple reasons: 1. I was still becoming comfortable speaking up in school, after all, this was my first year in a giant high school, and 2. I don’t think I realized the importance of talking about these events to unite the Ukrainian community.

This memorial statue stands in Kyiv.

This memorial statue stands in Kyiv.

This week is Holodomor Awareness Week in Canada.

The term Holodomor translates from Ukrainian to “death by starvation.” Ukrainians were forced to give up agricultural property and food due to Soviet policies.

Instead of attempting to describe this atrocity, I’ll direct you to a few resources where you can learn more.

I hope you can find time to learn a bit more about the tragedy and to hear stories from those affected, even if all you do is read a couple paragraphs or watch a couple minutes of a video.

Also, I’m always interested in learning more about Ukraine, so if you have any suggested books or films about the Holodomor, please comment below.