Holdomor 2008 Campaign Launch

Holodomor 2008 Campaign launch report

On Sunday 6 April, over 40 people from around the country braved the sleet and snow to attend a Holodomor workshop at Tarasivka to launch the 2008 Holodomor campaign.

The campaign’s long-term aim is to encourage the government to follow the lead of the USA, Canada, Australia and other countries, and recognise the Holodomor as genocide. But we know that this cannot be achieved in a year, so the focus for 2008 is:

  • To raise awareness of the Holodomor in the media, in Parliament and amongst the general public;
  • To organise a series of events to commemorate the victims of the Holodomor while it is still within living memory
  • To ensure that the Holodomor has its rightful place in 20th century history and is never forgotten
  • To begin moves to get the Holodomor into the national curriculum.

Bohdan Ratych, chair of the Holodomor Commemoration Committee, set out some of the key activities for this year of remembrance, particularly the Torch of Remembrance, which began its journey round the world from Canberra, Australia, on 6 April, and the national commemoration in November.

AUGB’s strategic communications advisers, 8hwe, took those present through the reality of dealing with an outside world that has little knowledge about the Holodomor and the key messages which will help to inform and persuade people.

During the workshop, those present had an opportunity to practice communicating the significance of the Holodomor, through audio and video interviews. The students present started to think about how to organise a student campaign during the next few months: others ‘claimed’ the MPs that they were going to target for support.

It is clear that this is the start of what could be a long campaign, given the low level of general awareness about the Holodomor. We encourage everyone to take part, because if we don’t promote the remembrance of millions of innocent lives lost, then no-one else will. And we need to do it now, while there are still survivors who can tell their story and help us turn a horrific statistic into a collective memory of millions of lives so tragically and unnecessarily lost.

Holodomor workshop