Ukrainian language: look to the future
On June, 25 UWC leaders joined a panel discussion “Ukrainian Language in the World: Impulses from Ukraine”. The discussion was organized by the long-term UWC partner, the International Institute for Education, Culture and Diaspora Relations of Lviv Polytechnic National University (МІОК) within the framework of the Biennial “Ukrainian language in the world: regress or progress?”
In his opening remarks, UWC President Paul Grod emphasized that the International Educational Coordinating Council of the Ukrainian World Congress has provided and continues to provide methodological support to Ukrainian language teachers abroad. The UWC fully encourages and supports the study of Ukrainian as a foreign language in public schools around the world. Through its programs and initiatives, the UWC works to preserve the linguistic and cultural heritage of the Ukrainian people, as well as to counteract the linguistic assimilation of new generations of Ukrainians in the diaspora.
The discussion was moderated by Iryna Klyuchkovska, MIOK Director, and Oksana Trumko, MIOK Research Fellow. Panellists, including UWC First Vice President Stefan Romaniv and UWC Vice President Nataliya Poshyvaylo-Towler, focused on the dissemination and promotion of the Ukrainian language worldwide. According to Serhiy Shapovalov, an analyst at the Ilko Kucheriv Democratic Initiatives Foundation, the number of people who speak Ukrainian in their families (at home) is growing, on average, by 7-8% every year. Nataliya Poshyvaylo-Towler also noted positive changes with the Ukrainian language in the Southern Hemisphere – in Australia and Africa. “New communities are being formed in new, previously unexplored territories, and Ukrainian schooling comes with this. During quarantine, the number of students in Ukrainian schools, contacts between children and parents, and teachers even increases,” – said the UWC Vice President.
“The Ukrainian language has always been and remains a bridge of unity between the diaspora and Ukraine. I believe that through the joint efforts of the Ukrainian state, the civil society and the diaspora, we will do everything we can to give clear and unambiguous signals to the world: the Ukrainian language will spread and its role in the world will grow, ” – stated UWC President Paul Grod.