TORONTO – The Ukrainian Canadian Congress – Toronto Branch (UCC) is eagerly anticipating the official unveiling of Toronto’s Holodomor Memorial on October 21 on the grounds of the Canadian National Exhibition (CNE). Construction is nearing completion.
Thanks to Mayor John Tory, the Toronto City Council and the CNE Executive Committee, construction of UCC-Toronto’s project, the Holodomor Memorial Parkette, which broke ground April 11, 2017, has progressed smoothly. Toronto will join the ranks of other world renowned cities that already feature such a monument, namely Kyiv, Washington and Edmonton.
The bronze sculpture “Bitter Memory of Childhood” – the original of which is located in Kyiv – will be centered in a beautiful small park, surrounded by three millstone gardens. It will serve to memorialize the tragedy of the Holodomor, a genocide by hunger inflicted on millions of Ukrainians by the Stalin regime in 1932-1933. Passerby will have the opportunity to learn about this tragic event and students will have a visual reinforcement of what they are being taught in the current high school curriculum in Ontario.
UCC-Toronto successfully undertook a very challenging fund-raising campaign to bring to fruition this 25-year-long aspiration to build a Holodomor Memorial in Toronto. Finally, on Sunday, October 21, the community will see the realization, unveiling and blessing of this project. The personal name engraving campaign was a huge success, and a temporary donors plaque will be installed and on display for the unveiling. A permanent bronze plaque will be constructed in the coming months, once all donor information has been verified.
Following the unveiling, there will be a community reception at the Beanfield Center, located right across the street, where a Holodomor poster display will be presented. With the anticipated attendance of the artist-creator of the famous statue, Petro Drozdowsky, organizers look forward to insights and stories of inspiration surrounding the fulfillment of his vision.
Tickets are now available online at https://holomodormemorial.eventbrite.ca and in Toronto at: Buduchnist Credit Union, 2280 Bloor St. W.; Ukrainian Credit Union, 2397 Bloor St. W.; and the Office of the Ukrainian Canadian Congress, Toronto Branch, 145 Evans Ave., Suite 208 (telephone, 416-323-4772).