Skip to content

A colourful quilt for a brighter future

Young person with Ukrainian ancestry wants to help those affected by war.
Gracie Rohatyn Ukraine quilt
Gracie Rohatyn finishes up sewing together fabric pieces for her quilt.

WAWOTA - Gracie Rohatyn of Regina spent some time in Wawota recently with her great grandmother Dorothy Rohatyn and grandmother Shannon Linder.

When the war first started in Ukraine, Gracie was visiting grandmas in Wawota at that time too.

Great grandmother Rohatyn explained much about Gracie’s Ukrainian family heritage to her as she is a fifth generation Ukrainian Canadian.

Gracie’s great, great, great grandparents came from Ukraine to Canada in 1919 and 1920 to work in the coalmines in Bienfait, living at nearby Taylorton, which was at the time a small mining town. They later farmed near Lampman.

“While we were watching the news on the war in Ukraine, we saw this young girl leaving as a refugee with her family and all she had was a backpack,” explains Dorothy.

“We had a little discussion about it and how sad it would be to have to do that.”

“We got talking about it and compared it to how would it be if 11-year-old Gracie had to do that at her age.”

This tugged at Gracie’s heart and she wanted to do something to help, because it was her cultural concern.

She was so concerned about what was going on in the Ukraine.

“At that time we phoned and made a donation to a charitable organization.”

Gracie had the perfect plan.

She is just learning how to sew – a new venture for her – and she is loving it.

There was a quilt that her other grandma Shannon had started, and because Gracie was learning how to sew, she decided that her working on it would allow her to complete that quilt, hopefully in time for her to give to a family in need.

Because there is a Ukrainian family moving to Wawota within the next week or two, Gracie thought about what she could do to welcome the family to town, especially the family’s seven-year-old daughter who would be close to the age of the girl they saw on the news. This was the perfect person to present the quilt to.

The sewing for the quilt is finished and ready to be quilted.

The community awaits the young Ukrainian family that will be moving to Wawota soon. The family has a teenage son in addition to the daughter.

Gracie is looking forward to presenting this quilt to the family, in particular to the young girl.

Wawota has housing available, so a committee set things in motion to bring one or more families from Ukraine.

“We’re always interested in what we can do to help in our communities.”

“The community is excited about bringing Ukrainian families to Wawota,” states Rohatyn.

There may be a language barrier but Rohatyn explains that the Google app is awesome.

Gracie has already been on the App to welcome this little girl and talk to her a bit.

Gracie’s grandmother Shannon ordered sunflower seeds, which are the national flower of Ukraine and gave more than 200 seeds to the committee to pass out to residents of the community to plant them. They’re hoping to have the community full of sunflowers which are a symbol of peace.


push icon
Be the first to read breaking stories. Enable push notifications on your device. Disable anytime.
No thanks