The Herald is Back!

The title of the lead article of the February 2020 issue of the Ukrainian Canadian Herald (UCH) is: “Our Last Issue”. In writing the lead, its long-time editor, Wilfred Szczesny, realized that his failing health would not permit him to carry the heavy work load associated with producing the newspaper. While the print edition would be no more, he knew others would carry on with the mandate the Association of United Ukrainian Canadians (AUUC) had given – bring the UCH online as part of the new website the AUUC was developing. He wrote:

‘While the print edition has come to an end, the future is in site. Progress is well under way toward the production of a digital news medium, taking Kobzar Publishing to the next stage in the history of publishing in the progressive Ukrainian Canadian community.

I hope to be able to continue contributing to the development of the new publication. At the same time, I take comfort in the knowledge that movement in the new direction does not depend on me. The other members of the Editorial Board, the Digital Presence Committee, and the Board of Kobzar Publishing are very capable of carrying the project forward.’

While Wilf knew only the print edition, he looked forward to the promise of a digital edition. On this, he wrote:

‘Kobzar Publishing is now preparing for the next technological leap, eliminating the print shop and the post office, by sending the publication directly from the editorial office to the reader’s computer. Furthermore, the publication can be updated as often as the publisher wishes to do so.’

Wilfred Szczesny

On May 13, 2021 Wilfred passed away from pancreatic cancer. He did not live to see the Herald come on-line.

The Herald is now back to pick up from where it left off: reporting on news from the Association of United Ukrainian Canadians and its branches, the Shevchenko Museum (Toronto), the Ivan Franko Museum (Winnipeg), the Canadian Society of Ukrainian Labour Research; the general national and international situation and the regular feature ‘Ukraine Miscellany’. Through reporting and discussion on the situation in Ukraine the editorial committee hopes to provide a contemporary analysis of Ukraine.

The UCH is proud to be part of a growing and vibrant independent media community that is evolving and growing as disenchantment with the mainstream media grows. A Reuters report from June 2022 notes: ‘Large numbers of people see the media as subject to undue political influence, and only a small minority believe most news organisations put what’s best for society ahead of their own commercial interest’. The continued concentration of the media in Canada means that journalism is also becoming concentrated in the hands of big news organizations such as Reuters and Associated Press (AP). Much of what Canadians read, watch or listen to is little more than the information Reuters or AP has provided to news outlets.

The UCH is a small news publication but it is vital to the life of the AUUC. It is the muscle that ties together our organization. The intervening years without the UCH have meant that the AUUC could not report on the many things it has been doing. To their credit, our Branches and Museums stepped in with their own newsletters and other communications, bu t now we can also present this information under the collective banner of the Ukrainian Canadian Herald, and through the AUUC website to the wider world. We will also continue to present analysis and opinions on developments in the wider world – an important element of the ‘Ukrainian Canadian Herald’ and before that the ‘Ukrainian Canadian’.

And so we begin…