Natalya Morkvych joined the Ukraine Prosthetic Assistance Project by pure luck. One of the participants has dropped out 2 days prior to the start of the Project and the organizers were hoping to find a female amputee with the same foot size, build and the same type of amputation as the previous candidate. Natalya contacted the organizers and fit all of the criteria.
Natalya is a paralympic world champion in fencing in wheelchairs. She is 25 and has lost her left leg above the knee in a motor-vehicle accident when she was only 15. She has not been running since and could not even dream of getting back to running.
Until she joined the Ukraine Prosthetic Assistance Project.
The third phase of the Project was taking place in Ukraine between July 24 and Aug 4, 2017 and was focusing on sports and recreation prostheses. The main goal of the Project, as always, was to bring the expertise to Ukraine and teach the local specialists to fit sports prosthetic devices in Ukraine.
An international team of specialists-volunteers from Canada, USA, Australia and Great Britain spent two weeks in Dnipro, Ukraine fitting and training.
“We are here to demonstrated the patient oriented, multidisciplinary approach and help the amputees get back to their favourite sports activities”, - said Laura Burgess, a British physiotherapist, a member of the team.
The Project was funded by the Embassy of Australia in Ukraine, Canada-Ukraine International Assistance Fund, Prosthetika, World Rehabilitation Fund and some private donors.
Altogether, the third phase of the Project delivered 5 lower limb sports prostheses and 8 upper limb sports prostheses.
To date, the Project has brought systemic changes to Ukraine, has trained dozens of local specialists and has helped tens of amputees in a sustainable way.
“This has been one of the most successful missions”, -said Jon Batzdorff, the Project technical director and co-founder.
“We have made a difference yet again, in both the people's lives and in the Ukrainian prosthetic industry”, - added Antonina Kumka, the Project founder.
Natalya and other Project participants-amputees can now enjoy the activities they thought they could never get back to. Ukrainian specialists learnt how to fabricate and fit sports prostheses and how to help amputees use their sports prosthetic devices effectively.
Photos: Valkyrie Tereshkova
On May 16, 2017 Canada-Ukraine International Assistance Fund has held their by-annual elections meeting. Most of the members in good standing were present and voted anonymously to elect the new Executive Board.
President: Antonina Kumka
Treasurer: Oksana Cherchyk
Director of Operations: Anna Jacyniak
Director: Natalia Pankiv
Secretary and Chief Communications Officer: Mariya Khymych
Chief Technology Officer: Dmytro Mallik.
CUIA Fund has also increased its membership and continues to do so.
If you you are interested in joining CUIA Fund team, just e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org saying you would like to join and a membership application form will be sent to you.
Crimea. As it was is a documentary about the illegal annexation of the Crimean Penninsula by the Russian Federation, produced by a group of dedicated filmmakers of Babylon 13 production team.
On March 24, 2017 the documentary was premiered in Canada, at the Cinestarz Mississauga.
More than 100 people showed up at the premiere.
The documentary featured the stories of the Ukrainian military, who continue serving in the Ukrainian NAVY and Marine Forces. It showed footage of annexation and provided brief facts and main dates. For English-speaking audience the documentary had English subtitles.
The audience was moved by some parts of the documentary and critisized the others.
"It really takes you back to 2014 and makes you relive those events and feel for those military and people who were trying to save Crimea and their honour", - said Yuriy Khimich, one of the attendees.
"I would cut some accounts. Some stories are unnecessarily long and make the documentary look raw and unfinished", - mentioned Kateryna Tereschenko, who also cane to see the premiere.
A total of $1165 were raised and proceeds from the screening of the documentary will go to support the needs of the Ukrainian Navy, such as boat repairs, life vest purchases, etc.