Who The Folk?! Natalie Belsky

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As a history professor specializing in the former Soviet Union, Natalie Belsky has a keen understanding of what’s going on in Ukraine. Belsky teaches at University of Minnesota-Duluth and specializes in migration, minority politics in the USSR, Soviet citizenship, and East European Jewish history. We talk about her family’s history in the former Soviet Union […]

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Who The Folk?! Asya Mikhailenko Sturgell

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Asya Mikhailenko Sturgell could’ve been in Kyiv visiting her family this past weekend and celebrating her grandmother’s 93rd birthday. Instead, she’s home in Minnesota worrying about their safety. We talk with Asya, who immigrated to Minnesota from Kyiv when she was 9, about her volunteer work with the Minnesota-Ukrainian American Advocacy Committee, her family that […]

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Who The Folk?! Alexandra Sakurets

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What drives someone to go towards a war zone and work with refugees? This week we talk to Alexandra Sakurets, a Ukraine-born Minneapolis resident and registered nurse. She’s currently in Przysml, Poland, on the border with Ukraine, treating refugees escaping Russia’s war on their country. Fair warning: the interview has a lot of abrupt breaks […]

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Minneapolis Jewish Federation’s Ukraine Fund Tops $700,000 Mark

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Minneapolis Jewish Federation has raised more $700,000 to help Ukrainian Jews since the Russian invasion on Feb. 24. The funds will go to the Federation’s on-the-ground partners: the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (JDC), The Jewish Agency for Israel, and World ORT. The money raised is in addition to a $200,000 allocation the MJF board […]

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At MN Capitol Rally, Jews Join Solidarity With Ukraine

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Amid cigarette smoke, sub-freezing temperatures, and a sea of blue and yellow flags and signs, the Jewish community stood in solidarity with Ukraine against Russia’s invasion at the #StandWithUkraineMN rally midday on March 6. “As Jews who have come from Ukraine and Russia and still have loved ones in those lands, we share your despair,” […]

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Resources To Help Ukraine

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One week into its war with Ukraine, Russia has bombed civilians, hospitals, and historic city centers, reducing entire areas to rubble and creating a humanitarian crisis. One million refugees have already fled Ukraine. Many Ukrainians are either unwilling or unable to leave as the Ukrainian army fights against Russia’s invasion. Here’s how you can help […]

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A World Disappearing Before Our Eyes…

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This piece originally ran on the blog of the Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies at the University of Minnesota. Like many of us, I have been heartbroken to see the news, images and footage coming out of Ukraine over the past week. Despite the foreboding news over the past weeks, I didn’t believe it […]

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The Jewish Case For Supporting Ukraine

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For much of my life, I hated Ukraine.  As the son of Soviet Jewish immigrants, I grew up with stories of antisemitism, discrimination, and the Holocaust that gave the rationale for immigration. These stories made me despise all of Europe — but my mother’s birthplace, Ukraine, along with my father’s native Belarus, were the focus […]

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Minneapolis Jewish Federation Approves $200k Allocation For Ukraine Support

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The Minneapolis Jewish Federation board approved an emergency allocation of $200,000 to the Joint Distribution Committee and the Jewish Agency for Israel to support the Ukrainian Jewish community in the wake of Russian attacks, which began late Wednesday evening U.S. time.  “Having the largest population of elderly Jews in the former Soviet Union, and a […]

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Who The Folk?! Jonah Salita

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As a world traveler with a creative mind, Jonah Salita had worked for ad agencies while shooting his own stunning photos and designing his own tennis clothing as a teen. Now he’s devoting his time to working towards greater mental health awareness. We talk about how and why he launched the Diall App, his forays into […]

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