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Interview with Petro Malofij

Description: Bohdan Klid interviews Petro Malofij.

God blessed him with a generous soul, a sensitive heart, and a deep love of Ukraine, the land where he grew up but had to leave in time of war. That love and desire to help his compatriots rebuild an independent Ukraine prompted Mr. Malofij to give generously of his resources. Following the tragic deaths of his niece, Marusia Onyshchuk, and his nephew, Ivanko Kharuk, in 1986, he established an endowment fund at CIUS named after them. The first donation of $10,000 was matched by the Government of Alberta, and today the principal of the fund stands at $152,057. Part of that amount came from Mr. Malofij s medical insurance, as he never required a medical leave in the course of his career. Peter Malofij was born in 1921 in Tulova near Sniatyn (present-day Ivano-Frankivsk oblast). His father spent the interwar period in Canada and then returned to develop a business at home. As a thriving proprietor, he was arrested after the war and taken to a Soviet prison, where he soon died. During the war, young Peter was selected to serve in the Galician Division and took part in the Battle of Brody. The end of the war found him in the British occupation zone of Germany and then in a prisoner-of-war camp in Rimini, Italy. He spent a brief period in Scotland before moving to Canada in 1952. Upon arrival, he lived on his cousin’s farm near Vegreville, Alberta, and settled in Edmonton in 1954. Here he worked as a crane operator and at other jobs, helping build tunnels and other urban infrastructure. Mr. Malofij began his charitable activity after his retirement in 1984. A self-effacing person, he shunned publicity and established his fund anonymously. Donating for various purposes, he made the development of young people’s education his priority. At first he supported the Ukrainian Free University in Munich, Germany. On learning about the Canadian Institute of Ukrainian Studies, he soon became actively involved in its support. Once Ukraine obtained its independence, new opportunities became available to help students in Ukraine. The cause closest to Mr. Malofij's heart was assistance to students from the Sniatyn region studying at the Yurii Fedkovych National University of Chernivtsi. Mr. Malofij recently began to support another important CIUS project—the excavation and restoration of Baturyn, the capital of Cossack Ukraine. He has also donated to other Ukrainian organizations in Canada and supported a number of projects in Ukraine.

Found in CIUS Newsletter 2010
Author: CIUS
Publisher: CIUS
Date: October 26, 2009
Language: English, Ukrainian
Original Format: Digital audio recording

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CIUS, “Interview with Petro Malofij,” CIUS-Archives, accessed December 1, 2020, https://cius-archives.ca/items/show/2075.
Unless otherwise noted, this work is subject to a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International license .