Babuschka VJ

One twin is precocious and full of life. He jumped from the car the moment they arrived and hugged me. “Babuschka VJ!” he exclaimed. The other was asleep upon arrival and slept most of the next. He ran away when he saw me at first, and startled at any unexpected noise. “He has regressed,” his […]

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Arrival!

“Coming to Canada is like landing on an alien planet,” my friend Svetlana tells me. She arrived a month or so ago, and even with her perfect command of the English language, she struggles to make sense of our way of life. “The bus system, is going to drive me crazy,” she adds. Svetlana and […]

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Brief Update

Five bikes – powered by two adults and three children – carried balloons, flowers, and packages across town, voices raised on repeat: ‘Happy birthday to you.” When townsfolk stopped to shout out: “Whose birthday?”, they replied: “VJ’s!” Our family of five Ukrainians have been settled in their own home since June 22, and remain a […]

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A Home of Their Own

Five weeks ago, a family of five arrived on our doorstep, distraught and teary-eyed after having fled the war in Ukraine. The dad started working the next day, and the rest of us sorted out beds, groceries and necessary paperwork. Within a week, the kids started school and Mom applied for jobs. It didn’t take […]

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Pause for Art

For the first time in weeks, I took a break to create. The volunteering threatens to be all-consuming, but I am determined to find balance. Weeks ago, when I started this venture, I was hoping to connect one displaced Ukrainian family with a host family in my area. Quickly, the requests poured in and soon […]

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