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On the cover
7 (2014)
Tunnelling Towards Hope

28 February - 6 March 2014

Ukraine History

A Stronghold of Rulers and Rebels

With the recent death toll jumping to nearly 100 and 1,000 injured, Hrushevskoho Street, one of the strongholds of EuroMaidans three-month-long protests, made headlines around the globe. It was here, on 19 January the countrys stand against government corruption, abuse of power, and the violation of human rights turned from peaceful protest to all-out revolution. Having witnessed much over the years, Hrushevskoho is a street with a history, and not only care of recent days.


Ukraine Today
Acelebrity using their status and intelligence to influence public views and opinion is rarely seen in modern society, even less so in Ukraine. Here, the majority of celebs use their time, effort, and money to enhance or further their career rather than put their name to something that can do good for others. However, as EuroMaidan intensifies, some are making themselves heard and they fall either side of the EuroMaidan divide.
It used to be that when rebellion and revolution occurred, the intellectual, creative, and spiritual elite would be front and centre.


Ukrainian Culture

When Walls Can Talk

People have been writing on walls since the dawn of civilisation, we call it graffiti, and ranges from simple written words to elaborate wall paintings. Sometimes it is merely the creator wanting to leave his or her mark; sometimes there is an underlying social or political reason. And it is due to the latter that graffiti has exploded across Kyiv in recent months. Anti dictator messages aside, we peel back a few layers of paint to look at graffiti in the city in general.


Ukraine Abroad

A Ukrainian Doctor At Work in South Africa

Igor Petrovsky, a doctor Igor Petrovsky, a doctor from Vinnytsa, travelled to South Africa to work for a year as a United Nations Volunteer. Now awaiting his next UN assignment, he sat down to talk with Whats On about his African adventures.

An African woman was about to give birth, and the situation was critical. Besides suffering from tuberculosis, she was HIV-positive, so the doctors attending her were poised to perform a Caesarean section. Then, suddenly, her heart stopped. The alarmed staff resuscitated her, but the situation remained critical. Some of the doctors on hand didnt believe they could save the unfortunate woman and her baby, but others didnt want to give up. How did it all end? After a tense battle, the doctors fought through, and the woman and her baby lived. That was just one of the challenges Igor Petrovsky overcame during his recently completed year of volunteer work in a hospital in Limpopo, South Africa, in the countrys north. Though hes trained as an anaesthesiologist and reanimatologist, Petrovsky performed all sorts of work during his African sojourn, performing about a thousand surgical operations on patients of all ages. He delved into dental surgery, neurosurgery, obstetrics, urology, gynaecology and traumatology, even treating gunshot wounds. I amassed fantastic experience working in South Africa, Petrovsky says.

 The adventure was the result of his joining the United Nations Volunteer Programme, which sends highly-trained experts to often poor and troubled parts of the world, where theyre needed. Petrovsky, then 39, wanted an adventure, and to see how he measured up as a doctor in a different environment than his native Ukraine. Since UN volunteers dont get to choose what country theyll be sent to work in, the offer to go to South Africa came relatively out of the blue. The requirements were English and work experience as an anaesthesiologist. Living for a whole year in South Africa was a challenge not only for him, but also for his family. His wife Anna, also a doctor, went to Africa with him, while his preadolescent daughter Ira stayed in Ukraine along with her grandmother for a year. My family understands my choices and ambitions and tries to support me, Petrovsky says.

 His choice to go definitely wasnt based on money, since United Nations volunteers (UNVs) live on allowances that could be characterised as meagre. Rather, it was all about the adventure. When you participate in a UNV programme you get a unique chance to see Third World countries and understand the people who live there and their cultures better. Why not take advantage of an opportunity like that? Petrovsky says. Not that it was easy. When Petrovsky and his wife arrived in South Africa they faced not only an absolutely different culture, filled with different people and different languages and dialects, and characterised by a different mentality and lifestyle. They also faced the street-level danger for which South Africa, unfortunately, has become notorious. Following UN security rules, they werent allowed to speak on cellphones in the street when they were in the city of Polokwane, since it would give them away as foreigners, and thus as marks for kidnapping. Nor where they allowed to flash credit cards, cash or important documents in public, since people have been known to be murdered for such things in South Africa. When they got to Limpopo, certain areas of town were forbidden, on account of the high crime rates in a country thats crawling with weapons. Volunteers were actually given training in what to do if they encountered various violent crime situations.

 Despite the uncertain security situation, however, Petrovsky liked working in South Africa a lot, and made a number of friends among the locals. Africans are very open-minded, friendly and emotionally

 UN Volunteers were actually given training in what to do if they encountered various violent crime situations

 relaxed, he says. Theyre like your mirror. If you smile at them, theyll smile back at you. If you shout at them, theyll shout back. They just dont mask their feelings. Petrovsky is currently at home in Vinnytsa, but is really looking forward to his next UNV mission. Apparently hes hooked on the experience. He says hell accept any offer the UN gives him, but that more and more hes seized by the desire to work under extreme circumstances, and that the hazardous realms of Afghanistan have lately been capturing his imagination.

 Yulia Samus

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Comments (4)
You are not authorized! Only registered and authorized users can add their comments!
Mic6ko Boyko | 16.09.2010 22:26

I'm interested in contacting Dr. Petrovsky and discussing the subject of Ukrainians in South Africa. My email is smbinfo@aol.com and if anyone can comtact Dr Petrovsky for me.
Dr Petrovsky you are doing a great service to humanity.
Thank You

dr parvez ahmed memon | 17.09.2009 14:18

my name dr parvez ahmed memon .
m.d dr of medicine ukraine .dearest sir i have completed m.d degree in lugansk state medical university in ukraine sir i have been applying in house job practice in new zealand.plz sir send to informaton of this job process,

dr.parvezahmed memon | 19.05.2008 09:21

dearest sir .its me dr.parvez ahmed memon .dear sir i have complete m.d diploma in lugansk state medical university in ukraine.dear sir my practice in gen.surgery two year plz sir provide any job of in my profession.thanks dr.parvez ahmed memon .grauduate m.d doctor of medicine in 2006 year

Guest | 26.12.2007 12:36

Ms & Mr Petrovsky I believe you are real heros of our time! This article made me speachless. I wish there will be a lot of peple like u on this Earth. Since now on u will be an example and aspiration for me to go ahead to my dream - to help those who are really in need.
olenka, Rivne

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    Ukraine Truth
    Rights We Didnt Know We Had

    Throughout EuroMaidan much has been made of Ukrainians making a stand for their rights. What exactly those rights are were never clearly defined. Ukraine ratified the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1952. The first article of the Declaration states all human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights, they are endowed with reason and conscience, and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood. The ousted and overthrown Ukrainian government showed to the world they dont understand the meaning of these words.

    Kyiv Culture

    Pulling Strings
    Located on Hrushevskoho Street the epicentre of EuroMaidan violence, home to battles, blazes and barricades childrens favourite the Academic Puppet Theatre had to shut down in February. Nevertheless, it is getting ready to reopen this March with a renewed repertoire to bring some laughter back to a scene of tragedy. Operating (not manipulating) puppets is a subtle art that can make kids laugh and adults cry. Whats On meets Mykola Petrenko, art director of the Theatre, to learn more about those who pull the strings behind the show.


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