The Ukrainian House at Brown — a club founded last semester by a group of first-years who “felt the need to spread more information about Ukraine” — has officially gained University recognition, member Anastasiya Shalomyeyeva ’26 said.
“In the past couple of years we’ve seen an increase in Ukrainian students being accepted to Brown,” said member Maksym Temnosagatyi ’26. “We wanted to create this hub for all Ukrainians to come together, share their stories and support each other, especially in these difficult times of war.”
Last spring, the University provided an “advanced likelihood of admission” to 13 applicants from Ukraine, The Herald previously reported.
In addition to offering a space for Ukrainian students to connect, the club aims to “promote awareness about Ukraine not only as a nation that’s trying to resist Russian aggression but also (a nation of) rich history (and) culture,” Temnosagatyi said.
Ukrainian House hosted its first major event in October. In a lecture, Harry Merritt, visiting assistant professor in the Department of History, gave a talk about World War II’s legacy in eastern Europe, according to one of the group club’s Instagram posts.
Merritt “talked about some ideas and notions that were wrong about Ukrainians’ involvement in World War II, and how it affects the war now,” member Aidin Moldosanov ’26 said.
Since October, the club has hosted additional lectures and organized an event to commemorate the one-year anniversary of Russia’s invasion, where they showed “a chronology video with all the major events, losses and victories,” Shalomyeyeva said.
The group also held a Ukrainian music night and hosted a virtual lecture, “Ukrainian Resistance during the first year of war and prospects for 2023,” with Mariia Mezentseva, a member of Ukraine’s Parliament and a delegate to the Council of Europe.
In the future, the club hopes to collaborate with other eastern European cultural societies and groups both on campus and at other schools across the nation, according to Temnosagatyi.
Moldosanov emphasized that “supporting (Ukraine) financially” through fundraising is a priority for the organization. “We want to try to get some money to help our country in whatever way possible.”
At the event held on the anniversary of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, there were both physical donation boxes “as well as QR codes where people could … send money to the United24 fundraising platform,” which disperses funds to both Ukranians at home and those who have been displaced, Temnosagatyi said.
Moldosanov said that Brown students who want to help Ukraine should keep up with news on the Russia-Ukraine conflict and stay informed about “what’s happening.”
“There are a lot of people here who are interested in what’s happening, but they don’t know how to approach it because it’s a big issue,” he said. “We want to bring attention to it because there are horrible events happening every day.”
“We all come from different backgrounds … but right now this whole situation connects us all in the common goal of helping our homeland,” Temnosagatyi said.
For Shalomyeyeva, the Ukrainian House is “a piece of home” on campus. “That’s the most important thing about this club,” she said. “To feel connected to home while being far away.”
“It’s great to know that there are people from your homeland that speak your home language that you can communicate with, even though we are all spread out across campus,” Temnosagatyi said. “It’s always nice to come together every month, especially when we have a common goal of supporting our homeland.”
Indigo Mudbhary is a University news senior staff writer covering student government. In her free time, she enjoys running around Providence and finding new routes.