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April 18, 2024

Dear Friends and Neighbors,

I have a good news to share. Those who attended our benefit concert on March 23, 2024 and the Multinational Children’sFestival  on April 6, 2024 probably remember the artwork created by children in the Ukrainian city of Zaporizhzhia. Thanks to the idea of our Board member, Prof. Michael Naydan, I wrote to several children’s magazines asking them to publish the Ukrainian children artwork. And one of them, Skipping Stones, accepted the artwork for publication. Infact, it has just come out in their online edition. And it will be published in the printed version in the fall. There is an introductory article, including information about State College’s Sister’s SIster organization.

Here is the link to the publication (it is free for all to read):

Please share the news with the children, students, and friends. You are also welcome to share it on your social media networks. If you know students and teachers who might like to become online friends with these Ukrainian children, please get in touch with us by responding to this email. In the words of the Skipping Stones Editor: “Thank you so much for helping spread the artistic work of these children in spite of the incredible hardship created by the Russian war on Ukraine.”If you enjoy the artwork, and would like to “say something” to these children, please consider donating art supply, as well digital supply for computer design needs. You are welcome to write appreciation/care notes and include them along with your donations. We will send those supplies and donations along with copies of Skipping stone magazines to the children in Zaporizhzhia and their teacher.

Please, donate only new or gently used supplies, since it is expensive to send “weight” to Ukraine. If you have any other ideas what to include in the package, please respond to this email.

You may drop your donations from May 1 through May 10, 2024, at 357 East Prospect Ave., State College, PA. 

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March 23, 2024

Dear Friends and Neighbors,

If you were not able to attend this workshop last year, here is another chance to paint your own Easter Egg. Ukrainians are world famous for decorating Easter Eggs. BTW, they do not paint them. They “write” them. That is why they are called “PYSANKA”, which in Ukrainian comes from the verb “to write”. Each symbol means something. And each person decorating an Easter egg tells his or her own story of Easter. 

The workshop is free to the public. It will take place on campus in the Burrows building. When you walk towards the PSU library from College Ave via the Old Main Gate, the Burrows building is on your right immediately before the Paterno library. Walk in through the mail door. Room 157 is on the same floor, to your left.

Bring your kids and family to this fun-filled event. And if you have any questions, please let me know.

Happy Easter egg “writing”, Svitlana

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March 25, 2023

Dear Friends and Neighbors,

Thank you all who came to support Ukraine on Saturday, March 23, 2024. It was a great concert. The violinist was amazing. The exhibition of posters created by children from Zaporizhzhia, a city under constant enemy bombing, were outstanding. The atmosphere and camaraderie were awesome!

This was further evidence of how skillful and talented Ukrainian people are.  All they need is peace to live on their own land, practicing their own culture and traditions. The enemy wants to annihilate all things Ukrainian, and denies the existence of the nation of Ukraine. Ukrainians continue fighting for their land and their independence. But they cannot do it alone. Please call your elected officials in DC and ask them to vote for supporting Ukraine. Most of the allocated funds will create well-paid jobs in the U.S. And the world will regard the U.S. as the leader of protecting democratic values, and resolving the humanitarian  crisis.

If you need the name and the phone of your senator and/or US Representative, please contact me, and I’ll help you.

With gratitude, Svitlana

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DECEMBER 27, 2023

Dear Friends and Neighbors,

I couldn’t help crying when I received new pictures from the Nizhyn home home/school for disabled and disadvantaged children. I am enclosing/attaching just a few of them into this email. The students received their Christmas gifts from the sister-city of State College, aka from you. Using the funds you contributed, we were able to purchase and send to these kids various books, markers, some sweets and dry dates for the holidays. The joy on these kids’ faces  is heartwarming and very touching. I think you all made this day unforgettable in the lives of those who encounter so many challenges in their lives. I am so proud of you!!!


Please feel free to send this email to your friends and neighbors. If you have any suggestions on how to get in touch with some local businesses who are looking for some charitable projects, please let us know. Your ideas and help are greatly appreciated. 


There will be many more pictures and another video on our website (

For those who would like to continue supporting our humanitarian aid efforts in Nizhyn, Ukraine, please consider a charitable contribution. You can send us the money via Zelle, Venmo, and just an old-fashioned check. Zelle transfer and checks incur no fees, and Venmo charges a 2% fee for each transaction. All contributions are tax-deductible. If you have not yet received a donation receipt for tax purposes, please contact us any time. Here are the specific donation instructions:

1) Zelle: Please search for Sister’s Sister, Inc (email:, then choose the amount to transfer and hit “send”.

2) Checks: Please sign checks to Sister’s Sister, and send to or drop them off at 357 E. Prospect Ave., State College, PA, 16801.

3) Venmo: Please find Sister’s Sister on Venmo and choose the amount to send. Or, scan the QR code (to the left).



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DECEMBER 25, 2023

Dear Friends and Neighbors,

This day, December 25, 2023 is a very special day for Ukraine. Ukrainian Orthodox Christians (i.e. the majority of Ukrainian people) are celebrating Christmas on December 25 for the first time since the Julian calendar was replaced by the Gregorian one in 1582. For the first time in history Ukrainian people will celebrate Xmas together with the Western world and not along with Russian Orthodox Christians. This marks a new era in Ukrainian history, and we are all witnessing it. Merry Christmas to those who celebrate it!


To help make this a special occasion, as well as to celebrate the coming New Year (still one of the most celebrated Ukrainian holidays), we sent some special treats to the children of the Nizhyn boarding school for disabled children and their caregivers and teachers. Here is a snapshot (to the right).

There will be many more pictures and video clips on our website (soon).

I wanted to use this opportunity to thank all of you for your support of the Ukrainian children, women and men in this difficult trying time. 


As a special thank you, I am enclosing a link to the Ukrainian carol “Shchedryk” ((Eng. “giver”, “generous”, “bountiful”) by the Ukrainian composer Mykola Leontovych, performed by the young students of one of the city of Lviv musical schools (left):

For those who are not aware, this Ukrainian carol became a beloved “Carol of the Bells” in this country. Here is one of the best renditions of this beautiful song:

As many Chrystians celebrate Christmas, and the world is preparing to celebrate the New Year, Ukraine is fighting for its life. Our help and support for the Ukrainian people is extremely important at this time. THANK YOU!

With best wishes of Happy Holidays and a peaceful NEW YEAR,


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November 23, 2023

Dear Friends and Neighbors,

Today is a special day for all of us. We are giving thanks for our family and friends, for our homes, electricity, warm and cold running water, ability to get to a store or a hospital, and our fortunes – big and small. Some of us are more fortunate than the others. But no matter how big or small our thanks are today, we are all thankful for the peaceful sky and for the freedom that we enjoy. I hope that today we can reflect on our fortunes and share them with those who are less fortunate in this country and abroad. 

If you are considering gifting this holiday season please consider Sister’s Sister. For the holidays we are looking to put together some special package programs for the children of Ukraine, especially for the care home for disabled children in Nizhyn. We are also continuing our donation program for Nizhyn’s hospital and rehabilitation center. Our fellow Ukrainians are standing in the face of the ruthless force intending to dictate its own laws to the world. Please, help us help those who are helping us all.  

My sincere gratitude and profound THANKS to all of you,


Dear Friends and Neighbors,

THANK YOU to everyone who made yesterday’s event such a memorable experience. It was amazing: Great movie, exciting music, and delicious Ukrainian food (wine and beer included albeit not Ukrainian 😉). The band’s frontman Eugene Hutz together with the band’s violinist Sergey Ryabtsev (both originally from Ukraine) played from the past albums and a new song from the upcoming album. The audience was standing and dancing. It was quite an evening to remember!

Looking forward to seeing you at the future events about Ukraine and/or dedicated to Ukraine,


Dear Friends and Neighbors!

Do you already have plans for this Saturday? I have a great idea for a one day cultural journey in Central PA that spans through continents: the TWO Ukraine-related documentary films screenings at the Historic Rowland Theatre  followed by a concert (free shuttles provided, please see below):

1)  We Will not Fade Away! (2023) by Alisa Kovalenko. A beautiful story about Ukrainian teenagers from the Donbas region, who could not leave their hometowns after the start of the war back in 2014 but preserved their love and dedication to Ukraine and dreamed big until the full-scale invasion changed their lives dramatically yet again. Screening starts at 4:00 pm

2) Scream of My Blood: A Gogol Bordello Story (2023), musical/documentary by Nate Pommer and Eric Weinrib. Known for their raucous live shows, punk rock immigrant folk heroes Gogol Bordello delve into their past and present as they voyage home to Ukraine amidst a smattering of bombs. “Spanning the final days of the Soviet Union all the way to pre-9/11 New York, and ending with the Russian invasion of Ukraine, Scream of My Blood: A Gogol Bordello Story is as much about how the world shaped Gogol Bordello as how the band shaped the world.” (Tribeca Film Festival). Screening starts at 8:00 pm.

3) Post screening performance by the band’s frontman Eugene Hütz, and Q&A with  filmmakers Nate Pommer, Eric Weinrib, and Beverly Chase.

The latter are to benefit the humanitarian support organization from NY – RAZOM (Eng: Together).

All flyers are attached below. The event is organized by the Centre Film Festival. Both events take place in the Historic Rowland Theatre, 127 North Front Street, Philipsburg, PA. It is a good 20-30 minute drive for State College, but the festival provides free shuttles for those who cannot make it there on their own. Here is the shuttle schedule: For convenience, the pdf copy is also attached below.

Please spread the word and show Eugene a warm welcome. Let’s raise some funds for Razom!!

Bus schedule (for convenience)
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Dear Friends and Neighbors,

On Thursday, August 24, Ukraine will celebrate its 32nd Independence Day. Its territorial integrity and the democratic development have been brutally challenged while the entire world looks on. However, Americans are not just watching. They are helping the Ukrainian people survive this evil war. To thank the American people for their support the Ukrainian refugees along with Americans of Ukrainian origin painted these cheerful sunflowers on the retaining wall of 1402 South Atherton Office building (across from Talbots) in State College. Please, feel free to take pictures with the wall and send me a copy – I’ll post it on our website.

With sincere gratitude,


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Dear Friends and Neighbors,

Here is another way to help Ukraine via the Ukraine Relief Fund. On Sunday, July 30th at 2 pm an outstanding movie THE GUIDE will be shown downtown State College in our historic State Theatre. Please spread the word and mark your calendars. This movie will help you understand a little more why INDEPENDENCE is so vitally important for Ukraine. 

I am also enclosing a pdf file of the flyer — please feel free to print or forward it, as needed.

With sincere gratitude,


July 4, 2023

Dear Friends and Neighbors,

Our sister-city of Nizhyn has sent me several congratulatory messages dedicated to the Independence Day celebration. And I am happy to pass them on to you! Both the mayor, Oleksandr Kodola, and the deputy mayor, Iryna Hrozenko sent their greetings and best wishes of happiness, good health and prosperity to all of you! 

Here is Mayor Kodola’s greeting via his Facebook page:

HAPPY INDEPENDENCE DAY EVERYONE!! Ukraine is only dreaming about their independence. They are paying with their lives for their future as a sovereign, democratic, and independent country. The American People know the value of Independence and will stand shoulder-to-shoulder with the Ukrainian people until their Independence becomes a reality.

In the meantime, we support the Ukrainian people with anything we can. Thank you all for sharing your resources and donating to Sister’s Sister’s Humanitarian Fund for Nizhyn, Ukraine. We are in the process of arranging purchasing special equipment, including ceiling mounted lifters for the Disabled Children Boarding School in Nizhyn. I will send another message with their website later for those who’d like more information. We are also in talks with the rehabilitation center to help them purchase wheelchairs and other medical equipment. I will keep you posted on how things are going.



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June 8, 2023.

Dear Friends and Neighbors,

We did it again! Our benefit concert on Monday, June 5, 2023, raised $8750 for our new sister-city of Nizhyn in Ukraine. THANK YOU all for coming to the concert, and for making this happen. Our sincere gratitude goes to Prof. Daryl Durran who spearheaded this event and put his time, mind and heart into organizing this benefit concert. We thank all the musicians and singers who gave their time and talent to make this beautiful concert. You are truly world-class! Our heartfelt appreciation is sent to Grace Lutheran Church who opened their doors and their hearts for us and made this concert an unforgettable reality. We also thank King Printing for their professionalism and generosity. We are endlessly grateful to Nina and George Woskob for underwriting advertising and mailing expenses. We thank Commissioner Mark Higgins for finding time to come and greet the community at this charitable event. We thank WTAJ journalist Maria Cade and CDT journalist Joshua Moyer for their coverage of the benefit concert. And of course, this concert would not be so successful without all the volunteers, including the President of the Ukrainian Society Igor Latsanych, and all the beautiful women in embroidered Ukrainian shirts who found themselves on the opposite side of the world in State College, PA, since Russia has started the full-blown war in Ukraine. THANK YOU ALL on behalf of the Sister’s Sister and the Ukrainian People.

If any of you have some good pictures from the concert, please consider sharing them with us. I have been working on our website using some of my own pictures, but we could use some more nice pictures. Thanks.

With sincere gratitude,


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Dear Friends and Neighbors,

This is just a reminder that only a week from now we will be enjoying the beautiful Ukrainian music concert prepared for us by the world-class musicians residing in State College. This will be the benefit concert to raise funds for our new sister-city of Nizhyn, Ukraine. There is no fee for the concert, but the donations will be accepted at the door. Every dollar is a blessing and will help our friends in Ukraine. All donations will be used to provide humanitarian aid to the people of Ukraine who stayed behind and could not leave the country. 

The concert is in the Highlands neighborhood, in the beautiful Grace Lutheran church that graciously volunteered their church for our benefit concert.

Please, support our efforts by coming to the concert and bringing all your friends, family and neighbors next MONDAY, June 5 at 7:30 pm.

See you all on Monday, June 5,


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The announcements for the historic signing of the Sister-City Memorandum of Understanding between State College, PA and Nizhyn, Ukraine.

Dear Friends and Neighbors,

We have some more exciting news to share. The major news is our new BENEFIT CONCERT! It will take place on Monday, June 5, 2023, at 7:30 pm. And it will be right here, in the Highlands neighborhood in the GRACE LUTHERAN CHURCH (corner of Garner St. and East Beaver Ave.). The church graciously agreed to host our benefit event and not to charge us for the venue. Therefore, we will not be charging for the tickets, but leave it to everyone to decide how much to pledge. All donations will go to our Sister’s Sister humanitarian efforts in Ukraine, and in particular to assist our prospective sister-city of Nizhyn in their recovery from the war damage.

Prof. Daryl Durran, who is famous for organizing another benefit concert for Ukraine in November of 2022, is organizing our event. We are infinitely grateful to prof. Durran and his colleagues, who graciously volunteered to play at the concert, for their efforts and generosity. This will be a classical music concert based on Ukrainian classical music. We do not have all the details for the repertoire yet, but we’ll share them with you as soon as they are available. 

So please, save the date, and spread the word as widely as possible. We are now working on the poster and I will send it to you as soon as it is ready.

The second exciting news is — we were able to purchase and donate 15 dry-air sterilizers to the maternity ward in the city hospital of Nizhyn. We were told by the mayor’s office in Nizhyn that this was what they needed badly (since most of the hospital equipment was looted by the Russians). I was able to find a Ukrainian manufacturer who produced such sterilizers and is able to offer warranty and maintenance for  the equipment. It will be delivered on Monday, and I will share any pictures when they are available.

And finally, if anyone has clean leftover card-size envelopes and do not know what to do with them, please consider donating them to Sister’s Sister. We are making our own thank you cards to send to our donors. But we are running out of envelopes. You can either drop them off at 357 East Prospect Ave., or let me know your address and I’ll stop by to pick them up. Any amount will be helpful. We could have just bought those envelopes, but since we are a volunteer organization, we could just make it a collective effort (and not waste our donations for buying stationery here). Thank you!


April 1, 2023

Dear Friends and Neighbors,

I have some good news to share. The State Theatre has sent our Sister’s Sister a check for $2,817.50.  We now have the final tally of how much money was raised in cash, checks, and Venmo donations for our prospective sister-city of Nizhyn pre-, during, and post-concert on February 25, 2023. The total amount comes to $8,537.23!!!  THANK YOU ALL SO VERY MUCH!!! And our special gratitude goes to the PSU professor of Slavic Languages and Literatures Michael Naydan who spearheaded this benefit concert and sponsored it. 

I have received the answer from our prospective sister-city about their most urgent needs. The maternity ward in their hospital is in dire need of sterilizers, a drying machine and a centrifuge. Our board of directors decided that we should purchase the sterilizers for them first, using the money that we have already raised. If we have any money left, we will try to buy a dryer for them, as well. As for the centrifuge, we may need to have another fund-raising event. I will keep you posted on how things are going with purchasing the sterilizers.

With sincere appreciation for all your help, Svitlana

March 10, 2023

Here is the copy of the signed Resolution on establishing the sister-city relationship with the city of Nizhyn, Ukraine:

March 8, 2023

Dear Friends and Neighbors,

On March 6, 2023 the State College Borough Council voted unanimously on the Resolution to establish the sister-city relationship with the city of Nizhyn, Ukraine. This is a historic moment. Thanks to your efforts and support Nizhyn, Ukraine, will become the first sister-city of State College, PA. We are all very excited about this great news and the great future developments. Our sincere gratitude goes to Jesse Barlow, who proposed the Resolution, all Council members who voted in its favor, and State College mayor Ezra Nanes, who supported our cause and backed the Resolution. We are looking forward to working with the Mayor, the Manager and Staff on establishing a sister-city relationship in the nearest future.

I will post the full text of the signed Resolution as soon as I receive the copy.

Best regards, Svitlana




DAILY COLLEGIAN February 27, 2023

DAILY COLLEGIAN February 25, 2023

WTAJ March 13, 2023

February 26, 2023

Dear Friends and Neighbors,

First of all, I wanted to thank ALL OF YOU for coming to the concert and supporting our cause. Even though it was not easy to find a parking spot close to the State Theatre (since most spots were taken by those who celebrated “State Patty’s Day”) many people made it to the concert. And it was a treat, indeed!

Many of you are probably wondering how much money we raised at the event. Unfortunately, I still do not know the entire amount. What I do know is that we collected $5,503.73 in the lobby before and after the concert. We may still get around $2,500 from the ticket sales. As soon as I know the final amount I will let you know. I am very thankful to everyone who helped spread the word and who shared their hard-earned money with the Ukrainians. 

With heartfelt gratitude, Svitlana

Our February 25, 2023 benefit concert poster

February 7, 2023

Dear Friends and Neighbors,

Below is the official information about our benefit concert. Please feel free to print, distribute, share, forward, post on other media — every bit helps. If you need it in a specific format (pdf, word, or jpeg), please contact us at, or be filling out the contact form on the website. THANK YOU!

January 20, 2023

Dear Friends and Neighbors,

I can’t wait to tell you some very exciting news: Prof. Michael Naydan (Woskob Family Professor of Ukrainian Studies, Professor of Slavic Languages and Literatures) together with the PSU Ukrainian Society are organizing a special benefit event for our Sister-city project. Prof. Naydan has invited KORINYA, Ukrainian Folk Band, originally from Toronto, to perform in State College on Saturday, February 25 at 1:00pm. Korinya [ko-REE-nia] means roots in Ukrainian, and here is the link to their website: Korinya. They describe themselves as contemporary folk band with a fresh, grassroots sound. Their music is as bright as their traditional Ukrainian costumes. They are fun and entertaining, their music is unique and unforgettable. You can get a glimpse of it on their website. And the best news of all is that all the proceeds from the concert will benefit our Sister’s Sister organization and, in particular, the sister-city of Nizhyn.

This is a spectacular opportunity to get closer to the Ukrainian people and culture (unless the war is over and we’ll all go to visit our sister-city Emoji). The event is downtown on Saturday afternoon in the beautiful historic State Theatre on West College Ave. To make this affordable for as many folks as possible, the tickets will be $10 adults, and $5 students and children. There will be opportunities for additional donations in the lobby if some of you wish to do so. The tickets will be for sale on the State Theater website, hopefully, next week. When they are available, I’ll let you know. The organizers are working on the logistics, which includes posters for the event.

The event is sponsored by the Woskob Endowment in the Humanities and we are looking for other businesses or organizations to underwrite this event. If you know of any business/organization that may be interested in participating in this important event, please let me know. 

I hope you can come with your families and friends. And please spread the word to as many people as possible. 

February 25, 2023 will mark one year and one day of the Russian invasion (aka “special military operation”) of Ukraine. The war is raging on, but Ukraine is still standing – thanks, in part, to your support and the support of the entire American people. THANK YOU!

Best regards, Svitlana

December 25, 2022.

Dear Friends and Neighbors,

It is this time of the year when we look back at the last 12 months, sum up our achievements, reminisce about happy times, regret about lost opportunities, and makes new plans for the coming year. And what a year this one has been! The unprovoked aggression of Russian Federation against peaceful Ukraine made us all determined to do something to help the fellow Ukrainians endure and survive this ruthless, dreadful, inhumane war.  And we did it. We did a lot: identified a prospective sister-city in Ukraine and made contacts with the city of Nizhyn. The city was temporarily occupied by Russians, and sustained some serious damage to its civilian infrastructure. We created our own charitable, tax-exempt organization Sister’s Sister and started collecting funds in order to help Nizhyn. We have transferred $13,000 to the city of Nizhyn since September. The city have used it to buy the plastic film to cover the windows in their central boiler station which was severely damaged. Now they are buying the new windows and are replacing the plastic film with them. They are also replacing the damaged pipes and the insulation. I am attaching some pictures for you to see what they are able to do with our assistance. The boiler station has started to supply warm water and heat albeit at a lower capacity so far! I am so proud of all of you who made this restoration of the warm water supply possible.  In addition to those donors who I previously thanked, I would like to express my gratitude to our new donors: Joan Richtsmeier and Bill Ryan, Susan Knox, Anthony and Julie Kwasnica, Michael and Katherine Hickner, James Lantoff and Gabriela Appel-Lantolf, Gloria and Deborah Meder, Robert and Janet Moore, Daniel Hendey and Elizabeth Toepfer, Richard McNitt, and Roslyn Contis, Mark, Valerie and Max Katsouros (repeated donors), George Dempsie, Cynthia Hinrichs and Tom Richard, Janet Irons and Al Thurman, James and Gloria Rosenberger, Theresa Lafer, Denise Costanzo, Hugh Mose, John Dziak, Maria Heren, Maria Smereka, Tracy Sepich, Eric White (repeated) and several anonymous donors. Special thanks go to our youngest donors – Gabe and Nat Hickner, and the Ukrainian Society of the PSU. Thank you all for your compassionate hearts and generous contributions to our Sister’s Sister Fund. 

In the words of the Nizhyn Deputy Mayor Iryna Hrozenko: We do not get tired of thanking you and the community of State College for the ongoing systemic support of the Nizhyn community in these difficult times for us and for Ukraine.

Please spread the word about our organization and the fund raising efforts. I just want to remind you that the contributions are tax-exempt. Checks should be written to Sister’s Sister and mailed/delivered to 357 East Prospect Ave., State College, PA 16801. Donation could also be made via a dedicated Sister’s Sister Venmo Account (also attached for convenience). Thank you!


Svitlana Jones

Dear Friends and Neighbors,

Thanks to the Ukrainian society of the PSU, we now have around 250 signatures (mostly students) in support of establishing the sister city relationship with the city of Nizhyn, Ukraine. I would like to present those signatures to the borough council at the Public Hour of the Council meeting on Monday, December 5 at 7:00 pm. I will ask the student representatives to join me. But I would also like to ask you to come with me to the borough meeting to show your support for the cause (if you are able to). We will only have 2 minutes to present the signatures and to ask what else needs to be done for the council to sign the sister-city agreement. So, it won’t take long, but we need to be there beforehand, around 6:45 pm. Thank you to all who will be able to join me.

Unfortunately, the Russia’s war against Ukraine is raging on. The Russians are targeting the power stations. As of November 29, 2022, the city of Nizhyn announced that they stopped the supply of warm water to the residents until spring because of the lack of electricity. For now the city is still able to supply the residents with cold water thanks to the use of generators. The city needs more and more support. Please, consider our cause as you think of your Christmas gifts. THANK YOU!

Here is a reminder how to help: The checks could be made to Sister’s Sister, Inc, and sent/delivered to 357 East Prospect Ave, State College, PA 16801. Also, we now have a dedicated Venmo account. I will add the QR code below.

Our website is almost complete. Hopefully, we’ll have it ready for visits next week or so. I will send you the link. 

A week ago I was working at the International Halifax Security Forum. The entire world was there (New Zealand, Australia, Sweden, Japan, and many more) to show their commitment to support Ukraine in their fight for freedom and democracy. This is the  scale of Ukraine’s bravery fighting the hungry beast named Russia (Ukraine is shown in yellow) :

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We cannot help Ukraine fight — there are others who do that. But we can help Ukraine’s civilians survive this murderous conflict. There are many humanitarian relief organizations helping Ukraine. But with Sister’s Sister you’ll know exactly what impact your money has, where it goes and who it helps. 

Thank you, again! And I’ll see you at the council meeting on Monday at 7:00pm.

Your neighbor, Svitlana

Dear Friends and Neighbors,

Our charitable, non-profit organization to help Ukraine, and our prospective sister-city of Nizhyn keeps moving forward. Thanks to the generous support of the PSU Ukrainian Society we now have a beautiful pamphlet to distribute and help our fund raising efforts. I am attaching it to this email for those who would like to print it and distribute it to your friends and neighbors, or maybe other organizations, etc. We also have some beautiful printed copies, thanks to the generous support of our neighbor Margaret Sebastianelli. Please, let me know where you would like those copies to be delivered (you can write to me privately to this email, or to our organization’s email: I will deliver the pamphlets wherever they are needed.

Earlier, we had a nice gesture from the fraternities living in our neighborhood asking how they can get involved. Can we please ask you to help us with fund-raising now? You can have as many of the fund-raising pamphlets as you need (or print them, if it is easier). 

We have received generous contribution from our neighbor Irina Gelfand, and repeated contributions from Jim and Susan Shincovich and from anonymous neighbors. THANK YOU all very much! With such kind intentions and generous hearts we’ll help our fellow human beings in Ukraine not only survive this harsh winter, but the war itself! DIAKUYU (“Thank you” in Ukrainian)!

I also wanted to remind everyone who has already donated to our Ukrainian relief fund — all you contributions are tax-exempt regardless of when you made them. Our tax-exempt status is granted retrospectively (i.e. since September 5, 2022). 

For those who need this information: Please write checks to Sisters Sister, Inc and send/drop off your checks at 357 East Prospect Ave., State College, PA 16801.

Thank you for your time and consideration.

Have a wonderful weekend,

Your neighbor,   Svitlana

Saturday, September 24, 2022

Dear Neighbors and Friends,

I apologize for the delay in updating you on what is going on with our sister-city fund-raising campaign. But you will understand what took so long after reading this letter.

I have two news items with respect to fund-raising: one is good and the other one is not-so-good. I’ll start with the good news. Thanks to the generosity of many of our neighbors, we now have $10,950!!! This is a fantastic news. On behalf of people of Ukraine and myself personally I would like to thank Mr. James Dunn for his unparalleled contribution to our sister-city relief fund. Sincere gratitude is also expressed to Todd and Margaret Sebastianelli, Hugh Mose, Donald and Peg Hambrick, Mark and Valerie Katsouros, David and Heather Hunter, John Christmas, James and Susan Shincovich, Anne Cornell, Eric White, Mark Huncik and the anonymous donor for your generous contributions and unwavering support of Ukrainian people. Your charitable contributions will help people in the city of Nizhyn survive harsh winter which is just around the corner. Below is a picture of snow covered rescue post in the Ukrainian Carpathian mountains (in the West of Ukraine), taken on September 21, 2022. The city of Nizhyn is in the North East of Ukraine where it did not snow yet. So, we still have time to help them.

And here is a not-so-good news. I told you that we needed about $3,000 to help with the boiler. I mixed up the water pump and the central boiler station with the water pipes. If you go back to the list of Nizhyn needs that I sent to you a few months earlier, you’ll see the itemized estimated costs for each item on their damaged infrastructure list. $3,000 will cover the water pump repairs. The boiler station will need much more to be fixed – about $45,000.  So, we still have to collect much more than we did so far.

We had another Zoom meeting with the mayor of Nizhyn about a week ago. They have been working hard to repair as much of their infrastructure as possible. They fixed their medical facility, and are now working on their road repairs. They were able to find a sponsor who is helping them with rebuilding the most damaged grade school. But the boiler station is still not repaired. So, I am asking you all to help me raise more funds. Please, ask your friends and neighbors, spread the word in churches and other neighborhoods. If you have any other ideas or would like to help in any way to raise funds, please let me know. You can write to me directly to this email.

 As you are all aware, not a single social service 501c(3) organization in State College was willing to partner with us in this fund raising campaign. Hence, I have opened a new, separate account in the bank where all your contributions are deposited and tracked. I have also created a non-profit organization to help Ukrainian people, and primarily our prospective sister-city of Nizhyn. The name of the organization is Sister’s Sister Inc. The Sister City name was already taken, so I modeled the name on Brother’s Brother Foundation. I am in the process of registering it as a 501c(3). It will take time to get it through all registers and offices in PA and DC, but hopefully it’ll be sooner than later. I already have an EIN if any potential donors need it. And I will keep you posted on the progress of getting the 501c(3) status approved. So, now you know what kept me from updating you earlier.

Thank you all for your support and kindness,