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Lviv oblast – Edmonton * Shumka Ukrainian Dancers

Andriana and Osyp Slavych shared this story with us along with a beautiful poem.

“We are new to Canada, we came here a year ago, on June 8, 2022. Osyp is 12 and Andriana is 13. We both are students of St. Theresa Catholic School in Sherwood Park. We enjoyed dancing at Shumka School of Dance and participating at competitions.

We moved here after the documents were approved by the Embassy.  We never had any intention to leave Ukraine before the war broke out in our Motherland.

We came from the Western part of Ukraine, a small town near Lviv. Our whole family could come, we are happy to be here all together. Our parents and our older brother Bohdan (he is 15). But still we have a big number of relatives who remained in Ukraine. Our father is from a family of 7 kids, he is the oldest. All of his sisters and brothers are in Ukraine. Osyp’s godfather and uncle fought for Ukraine and was terribly injured in the head. He went through lots of surgeries and the last was conducted three weeks ago. The big piece of titanium plate was put because his skull bone had been crushed. Mom is one of three kids. All our aunts with their families are in Ukraine as well as our two grandmothers and a grandfather.

Our mother, Mariana, used to work as a teacher of English as a second language and religion. Our father, Ivan, was a priest of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church.

We had been dancing Ukrainian dances before COVID hit. Everything went online and it didn’t work, so we had a break. After arriving in Canada we went to the church in Edmonton, where we found out about summer dancing camp. It was a lovely experience, we were so happy to be able to continue in the next study year! It was a great relief from the big change in our life. Here everything is different and our life is divided into before the war and after… We are trying to start from scratch.

Andriana had one assignment for her LA classes to write a poem. She tried hard and we would like to share it with you!” – Adriana and Osyp Slavych

Photos by Curtis Round Photography