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A celebrated Vancouver film journalist and an acclaimed local actor are teaming up to raise funds for a cause that hits very close to home.
Sabrina Rani Furminger and Adrian Petriw are the hosts of YVR Screen Scene For Ukraine, a gala evening at VIFF Centre on March 30 in support of humanitarian efforts in Ukraine.
“Like 1.4 million other Canadians, I’m part of the Ukrainian diaspora. I’m ethnically Ukrainian on my mother’s side,” said Furminger, who is the host of the YVR Screen Scene Podcast. “And now that place is under attack. Ukrainians are being slaughtered for no other reason than insisting that they have a right to exist as free people, on their own land. I feel a responsibility to help: as a Ukrainian Canadian, as a mother, and as a human being.”
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The fundraiser features a special screening of Maidan, a documentary by Ukrainian filmmaker Sergey Loznitsa about the civil uprising in Kyiv against the regime of President Viktor Yanukovych. The film was screened at Cannes Film Festival and was lauded as “(the) most rigorous, vital, and powerful movie of 2014” by the Village Voice.
YVR Screen Scene For Ukraine will also feature a performance by bandura musician Ruta Yawney, a post-screening reception, and an online auction with memorabilia, autographed collectibles, and filmmaking services donated by members of the city’s film and TV community.
Petriw, a Ukrainian Canadian actor with credits ranging from Legends of Tomorrow, The Hollow, and Scout and the Gumboot Kids, is looking forward to showcasing Ukrainian culture and history to inspire collective support at this critical time.
“I’m looking forward to sharing the strength, heart, and hopes of the Ukrainian people with guests who might not know a whole lot about Ukraine, but want to help,” added Petriw.
All funds raised through YVR Screen Scene For Ukraine ticket sales and online auction will be donated to the Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal established by the Ukrainian Canadian Congress and the Canada-Ukraine Foundation.
“Two million Ukrainians and more every day are now refugees. People within Ukraine are now living in a war zone, lacking basic necessities. Hopes and prayers don’t get these materials to them, money does,” said Petriw.
“Many people have already donated the price of admission who are unable to attend but wanted to contribute. We are so grateful for them. There are many other worthy Ukraine-focused charities out there as well for those interested. This is not a time to be insular. Get involved however you can.”
Furminger also encourages people to take action and support the Ukrainian community in any way possible.
“I feel like I can’t sit idly by, that I need to do something. I feel driven to action,” explains Furminger. “The need is great and the onus is on us to help. We want to raise a lot of money. We want to make a difference.”
When: March 30, 2022
Time: Doors open at 6 pm, event begins at 6:30 pm
Where: VIFF Centre – 1181 Seymour Street, Vancouver
Cost: $25, purchase online
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