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No soldier should have to die. No child should lose a parent

 Rather than buy tickets for the American Theater Club’s presentation of “The Enormous Radio” on June 5, audience members were encouraged to contribute five hryvnias to buy books for children of soldiers who had been injured or killed fighting in Eastern Ukraine.  

The director of the performance, Visiting U.S. Fulbright Scholar, John McCabe-Juhnke, decided to make Club’s performance a benefit opportunity. McCabe-Juhnke who just recently returned to the US after nine months in Ukraine, said of his decision “I've been fortunate never to have lived in a country fighting a war on its own soil until this year. I’ve learned to love Ukraine and have felt for some time I’d like to do something to help alleviate the suffering this war has caused. This was a small way for me to do my part.” 

McCabe-Juhnke contacted his departmental colleague, Oksana Solovei, who works with the Volyn Regional ATO Combatant Coordinating Aid Center to provide support for soldiers’ families. With the proceeds from the performance, they purchased a number of books that use stories to help teach young children English.  

Solovei and McCabe-Juhnke delivered the books to the Volyn Regional ATO Combatant Coordinating Aid Centeron Monday, June 15. Inna Novikova and Yulia Bilashuk, volunteers of the Center, received the contribution with deep gratitude. When he presented the books, McCabe-Juhnke said, “No soldier should have to die. No child should lose a parent. But maybe books like these can help us learn to understand one another better, to avoid wars like these in the future.”

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