About the Foundation: Achievements
The Bogdan Gubsky Foundation Ukraine – 21st Century founded in 2000, is designed to support positive changes in the country through cultural development and ensuring equal access to educational opportunities for children and youth.
The Foundation supports developments in the fields of science, education and culture. It has spearheaded nearly a hundred projects at the regional, state and international levels from providing opportunities for talented children and young scientists to honoring the outstanding accomplishments of established professionals in science and humanities; from innovative cultural and historical initiatives to the development of a strategic course of the state.
The Foundation’s current focus is to establish an international program of psychosocial support for children and their families impacted by the armed on-going conflict in Eastern Ukraine while tackling measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19 through a number of government and business initiatives.
The Foundation recognizes the importance of Ukraine’s cultural representation in the international arena, and since its inception, has focused on activities involving the development of cultural diplomacy. Cultural enrichment and appreciation of one’s own history is also a pathway to exploring and understanding other cultures of the world through a meaningful and collaborative exchange of ideas in the arts and sciences.
Its cultural diplomacy initiatives are an effective way to integrate Ukraine into the global community of free and democratic nations.
The Foundation has developed long term cooperation with leading Ukrainian museums, archives and libraries in the United States, by exhibiting unknown unique historical monuments and artifacts associated with Ukrainian culture and history.
In November 2020 through January 2021, the landmark international exhibition, Sign of Unity: The Great State Emblem of Ukraine: From Narbut to Yakutovych, was organized by the Foundation and the National Art Museum of Ukraine with the participation of the Ukrainian Museum and Library in Stamford (Connecticut, USA) and 12 other Ukrainian museum institutions. The purpose of the exhibition was to highlight the history and traditions behind the Great Emblem and its creation, which stems back to the ancient Kyivan kingdom of Volodymyr the Great’s trident, the coat of arms from the ancient Galician-Volyn state as well as the inspiration and impetus behind the Liberation War of 1917-1921.
Part of the Foundation’s cultural diplomacy initiative included international museum exhibitions, Hetman Bohdan Khmelnytsky: Symbols of Authority and Artifacts from Europe’s Museums.
In 2002, for the first time in 350 years, the Hetman’s artifacts were brought to Ukraine and presented in one exposition.
In tandem with the exhibit, the film Bogdan’s Standard, was shot and broadcast on STB TV. Additionally, an art block of stamps: Hetman Bohdan Khmelnytsky’s Symbols of Authority and Artifacts was also issued. This block of stamps was recognized as the best postal issue in Ukraine in 2004 and took third place at the international competition in Vienna.
The flag and mace of Bohdan Khmelnytsky together with the cross of Hetman Sahaidachny and the sanctuary (reliquary) of Hetman Mazepa were presented by the Foundation in the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine during the official inauguration of the President of Ukraine, Viktor Yushchenko on January 23, 2005.
Another historically significant exhibition Ukraine – Sweden: at the crossroads of history (17th – 18th centuries) was unveiled in Kiev (2008) and New York (2010). The exhibition in Kyiv marked the 300th anniversary of the Ukrainian-Swedish military-political union. The official opening ceremony was attended by Ukrainian President Viktor Yushchenko and King Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden.
Within the framework of the Foundation’s projects on the search for and preservation of national relics, Hetman Ivan Mazepa’s Flag was properly attributed and restored. Mazepa’s flag is the only Hetman’s banner in the Museum Fund of Ukraine. Also, the 18th century flag of the Ukrainian Cossack Sotnya of the Lubny Regiment was restored. This is significant because it is the only surviving Cossack flag in Ukraine with the image of the National Emblem – a Cossack with a musket.
One of the most outstanding restoration projects was the restoration of Europe’s largest silver icon case for the Miraculous Troitsko-Illinska Mother of God Icon which was commissioned by Hetman Ivan Mazepa.
The restoration work earned the prestigious rating, Museum Event of the Year in Ukraine in 2010.
The Foundation has also focused on publishing unique academic publications in cooperation with NASU (2001-2013), such as the History of Ukrainian Culture which covers the period of the ancient population of Ukraine to the beginning of the 21st century) in 5 volumes (9 books).
In order to promote Ukrainian culture and cultivate an appreciation for its history for future generations, the program: Repatriation of Museum Collections was launched. This program was important in that it expanded Ukraine’s museum collections by repatriating lost or missing art pieces and artifacts as well as through reacquisition and donative efforts. In particular, the Shevchenko National Reserve in Kaniv received the painting, Tomb of T. Shevchenko and a portrait of Kobzar by I. Poroshyn, as well as a life portrait of Taras Shevchenko (1860) by V. Gutovsky. Also, the Chyhyryn National Historical and Cultural Reserve received 10 etchings depicting The Liberation War of the Ukrainian People in 1648-1654 by the outstanding graphic artist, Oleksandr Danchenko as well as an antique copy of Taras Shevchenko’s Kobzar (1926), which was transferred to the Cherkasy Kobzar Museum.
Among the projects implemented by the Foundation in supporting talented young people are the academic achievement competition Universiade “Intellectual of the 21st Century, competitions for the best literary work, My village, you are the only one for me … and I believe in your future, Ukraine!, creative competition Bogdan’s Well, dedicated to Bohdan Khmelnytsky, competition The Idea of Unity in Ukraine: the Work of Taras Shevchenko, the Fate of the Ukrainian people, Society, State, own Family – Present and Future, which were attended in different years by about 700 thousand students. More than 600 winners of the competitions received grants from the Foundation for admission to Ukrainian universities and scholarships.
A significant initiative of the Foundation was the unification of prominent scientists, philosophers, teachers, artists, writers – within the All-Ukrainian program, Intellectual Forum of Ukraine to develop guidelines for the social development of the country; promote civic values, culture, science and education. This initiative included the establishment of an international award named after V. Vernadsky with the purpose of honoring prominent figures in the arts and sciences.
The Foundation has been one of the pioneers in developing and supporting local community governments through activities such as: training community leaders, assisting health facilities and providing access to, and assistance with, computers and internet connections in more remote or underprivileged communities. The Foundation has also provided educational and cultural institutions with copiers, stage equipment, and books as needed by the teachers and schools or institutions (e.g., museums).