April 12, 2019 – The following statement was issued by UCC National President Alexandra Chyczij in response to the fire:
This morning many of us woke up to the news that the Hamilton Ukrainian Cultural Centre had suffered a terrible fire overnight. While it is fortunate no one was injured, the building was devastated.
The entire Ukrainian Canadian family stands with the Hamilton Ukrainian Canadian community today. Buildings like this are more than the bricks: they bring communities together. For many of us, they become a second home.
For many, this building is associated with cherished memories of christenings, weddings, New Year’s balls, and other celebrations.
It was home to the Ukrainian Youth Association (CYM), the League of Ukrainian Canadians, Svitanok Women’s Choir, the Taras Shevchenko Ukrainian Language School, and previously to bandura music, art and dance groups.
The UCC will be offering all possible assistance to the community in Hamilton as its works through this difficult moment and starts to plan next steps. We are heartened that multiple organizations in Hamilton have already reached out to offer facilities as a temporary home to the rich community activity we have come to know at 241 Kenilworth Avenue — or, as many in Hamilton called it, “Dvista-Sorok-Odyn”.
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