In 1959 the Ukrainian community in Canada embarked on a significant undertaking – to erect a monument to Ukraine’s national poet, Taras Shevchenko, on the grounds of the Manitoba Legislature. This endeavour raised an astounding $175,000. Two years later, on July 9, 1961 nearly 25,000 Ukrainian Canadians arrived in Winnipeg from many parts of Canada to witness Prime Minister John G. Diefenbaker officially unveil the monument.
The fundraising for this monumental project led to a surplus of $30,000, which was invested into an endowment fund for the preservation and development of Ukrainian culture in Canada, also known as – the Ukrainian Canadian Foundation of Taras Shevchenko. Thanks to the extraordinary legacy of community generosity, the Shevchenko Foundation has grown $30,000 into nearly $50 million and will be celebrating its 60th anniversary in 2023.
We are thrilled to share excerpts of footage captured by Mykola Borys of the unveiling of the Taras Shevchenko monument in 1961.
Do you remember this event? Share your story, your memories, and photos of this historic day!