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National Executive - General Meeting
Ukrainian Youth Association 2008

On February 29- March 2, 2008, 52 delegates representing branches across Canada, namely: Edmonton, Calgary Winnipeg, St.Catherines, Hamilton, Mississauga, Etobicoke, Toronto, Ottawa and Montreal, took part in the Ukrainian Youth Association (UYA) of Canada Annual Meeting hosted by the Hamilton branch in the local Ukrainian Cultural Centre.

For the first time in the UYA’s history, the winter storm prevented delegates from Edmonton from arriving to the meeting on Friday. The majority of the delegates were also detained by the winter weather, which forced the president, Irene Jendzjowsky to officially commence the meeting very late at 7:30 p.m.

The Annual Meeting opened with the Lord’s prayer, followed by a moment of silence in honour of members across Canada who had passed away in the previous year. In her opening remarks Irene Jendzjowsky reminded delegates of the significance of the organization's 60th Anniversary and encouraged all branches to celebrate this important year across Canada in their respective branches.

The following members were elected to chair the Annual Meeting: Halyna Holowka (member of the Board), Chair, Bohdanka Hontar (UYA –Mississagua) -Vice-Chair, Olyana Grod (member of the Board)- Secretary and Tamara McColl{UYA- Winnipeg), Secretary.

The first part of the meeting consisted of reports. Irene Jendzjowsky reported on the activity of the National Executive in the past year. Financial reports and the Charitable Trust report were presented by the Executive Director, Harry Nesmasznyj. Mychajlo Shepetyk, presented the Audit Committee's report and Halyna Holowka read the report of the Internal Grievances Committee.

The second portion of the meeting was an information sharing session around the national projects planned for the 60th Anniversary of the UYA in Canada. Presenters included Tamara Tataryn, Andrea Kardasz and Eerka-Shust Dankowycz, who presented the first-ever camp to the Maritime provinces to take place in August, 2008. This project, in particular has presented many challenges due to the fact that the UYA does not have any branches in the Maritimes to assist with the planning.

Friday’s meeting concluded with the official internal unveiling of the commissioned limited edition print of Archangel Michael, patron saint of the UYA, by Bohdan Holowacki. This fund-raising project is intended to further support and sustain youth program initiatives of the National Executive. In appreciation of branches and their hard work and dedication over the last six decades, the National Executive presented each branch with a special edition print. The prints were presented in chronological order marking the founding of each branch. The National Executive also asked branches to assist in advertising and supporting this new fundraising endeavour.

The Hamilton branch organized an elegant wine and cheese reception on Friday evening to afford the delegates an opportunity to socialize and relax after a long day of travel and meetings.

The second day of the Annual meeting commenced with an information session. Topics included the new format of the national leadership seminar, enhancing communication and the 75th Anniversary of the Holodomor.

During the lunch break, Pavlo Grod, the president of the Ukrainian Canadian Congress and member of the UYA National Audit Committee, addressed the delegates and emphasized the UYA’s important role in preparing youth members to be active and to take leadership roles in the Ukrainian-Canadian community.

After the lunch break, the delegates broke out into smaller groups to discuss an array of topics which included: programming for ages 13- 17, activization of membership and fundraising.

The evening concluded with a banquet marking the 60th Anniversary which was attended by over 250 guests.

Sunday’s program commenced with a liturgy at Holy Spirit Ukrainian Catholic Church in downtown Hamilton. Father Roman Kekis officiated the mass and welcomed all the delegates of the Annual Meeting and wished them continued success in their endeavours with youth.

The program concluded with reports from Saturday’s break-out sessions. The delegates agreed to support the new three phase national leadership seminar, new initiatives to activate membership, a funding formula for the youth camp to the Maritimes and new initiatives to improve communication to share successes of the UYA with the Ukrainian and global communities.

The National Executive extends its sincerest gratitude to everyone who cooperated and contributed to make the Annual Meeting very productive and successful, especially the Hamilton branch and its president, Adriana Narozniak.

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