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Ukrainian-Canadian group organizes fundraiser dinner in Whitehorse

Yukon’s Ukrainian community is organizing a fundraising event in Whitehorse on March 26
Members of the Ukrainian-Canadian Association of the Yukon get ready to deliver supplies to Ukraine earlier in the year. The supplies were delivered and the association is continuing its efforts for Ukraine with a fundrasier dinner on March 26. (Elena Kozhevnikova/Ukrainian-Canadian Association of the Yukon)

The Ukrainian community in the Yukon is organizing a fundraising event in Whitehorse on March 26.

The community event tagged: “Borsht & Babas for Ukraine,” is organized by the Ukrainian-Canadian Association of Yukon and will serve as an avenue for the group to raise funds in support of the victims of the war in Ukraine.

Borsht is a traditional Ukrainian dish, primarily made with beets, beef, cabbage, potatoes, carrots, garlic and dill, and then served with a dollop of sour cream and rye bread.

Other menu items prepared for sale at the event include cabbage rolls (Holubsti) and potato pancakes (Deruny) with mushroom gravy. There are vegetarian options for each dish.

Sacred Heart Cathedral in Whitehorse provided their kitchen and dining space to the group while Wykes’ Independent Grocer provided all the ingredients for the dishes to be prepared for the event.

Jeff Sloychuk, of the association, said the group has done a borsht fundraiser in the past, but what motivated them this time around was after the Yukon mosque did a fundraiser for victims of the recent earthquakes in Turkey and Syria.

“I was happy to go and support them because it’s cool to see our different communities coming together whether it’s the First Nations or people from the Muslim community or Japanese or Filipino organizations or Taiwanese,” he said. “People in the Yukon should take advantage of all the different cultures and food they have to offer.”

During Sloychuk’s last trip to Ukraine in February, he returned with some precious Ukrainian items — handicrafts, sun flowers and jewellery in the hopes of using them to raise funds during an auction at the event. He also brought back Ukrainian food items which he said people attending the event can buy and take home to cook.

Some Yukoners also donated gifts, items and crafts to the group which they intend to auction at the event as a way of raising money for their mission to Ukraine.

Since the start of the war in Ukraine in February 2022, the group has been mobilizing, fundraising, providing support and resources and helping in resettling new Ukrainian arrivals to the territory.

Before the one-year anniversary of the Ukraine war on Feb. 24, Sloychuk flew to Ukraine to deliver supplies worth more than $60,000. Upon his return to the Yukon, his team and members of the Ukrainian community in Whitehorse held a candlelight vigil for the anniversary. He said the event brought the community together.

After the event, he said about 30 to 40 of those who attended the vigil — newcomers to long-time members of the community — gathered to be together and support each other.

“It was a very comforting moment for us, so we decided we want to do something once a month just to gather as a community and continue to keep the hopes and dreams and aspirations to fight against Russia alive,” he said. “This is our next event and, of course, if we can offer delicious Ukrainian food to Yukoners then we will.”

Sloychuk said the group aims to raise between $15,000-20,000 during the event to deliver medicines and antibiotics to those in need of them in Ukraine. The goal, he said, is to make another trip to Ukraine in May and deliver the supplies.

Contact Patrick Egwu at

Patrick Egwu

About the Author: Patrick Egwu

I’m one of the newest additions at Yukon News where I have been writing about a range of issues — politics, sports, health, environment and other developments in the territory.
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