BCU Foundation: Building the Ukrainian Story

April 14, 2017
Signing the agreement

Signing the agreement with the BCU Foundation (left to right: Mr. Roman Medyk, Chair, BCU Foundation (seated);
Ms. Chantal Schryer, Vice-President, Corporate Affairs, Canadian Museum of History; Mr. Mark O’Neill, President
and CEO of the Canadian Museum of History (seated); Mr. Orest Kostruba, Director, BCU Foundation).

Many of the millions of visitors to the Canadian Museum of History will remember the Ukrainian church — an artifact, not a replica, an actual full-sized building — right in the middle of the former Canada Hall. As a powerful symbol of late 19th and early 20th century settlement across the Prairies, the church of Saint Onuphrius, originally from Smoky Lake, Alberta, will remain a focal point of the new Canadian History Hall.

The church provides a strong reminder of the Ukrainian pioneer story as well as a link to the Ukrainian-Canadian community. Visitors are able to step inside the consecrated church to learn more about the first wave of 170,000 Ukrainian settlers who helped shape a more diverse Canada beginning in the early 1900s.

Saint Onuphrius Church

The church of Saint Onuphrius.

This link was important to the BCU Foundation (BCUF), a leading charitable institution that promotes the vibrant growth and long-term development of the Ukrainian-Canadian community. Launched in 2006, BCUF delivers substantial assistance to noteworthy community-based cultural and educational endeavors in Canada.

BCUF’s generous gift of $100,000 to the Museum supports their common goal: to explore the circumstances and celebrate the people who built and continue to create our country. “BCU Foundation’s gift is our tribute to Canada, the country the Ukrainian-Canadian community has called home for over 125 years,” states BCUF Chair Roman Medyk. “This is a celebration of a Ukrainian-Canadian story and a symbolic mark of our ongoing contribution to the enrichment of Canada’s diversity and prosperity.”