Since the start of the full-scale invasion, TV presenter Ivanna Onufriychuk initiated the "IvAlive" charity foundation. The main focus of the foundation is to provide assistance and support to Ukrainian refugee children and their mothers in Switzerland. Ivanna has been caring for Ukrainians in this country, which became her second home even before the full-scale war.
Inna Geletyuk, Evgen Khmara, Ivanna Onifriychuk
Roberto Marino, Sophie Le Van, Ivanna Onufriychuk, Sophie Bloom
"The idea of organizing such charitable events had been on my mind for a long time. I adore Evhen's creativity, and he resonates with me as a person. So, I felt that he and his talent were the ones who could help us. Our team worked on bringing this idea to life for more than two months. Even our newly formed children's choir had several hours of rehearsals each week. It was thrilling because we were preparing for two concerts simultaneously: one in the format of a gala evening in Lausanne, and the other, cozy and accessible to everyone, in Bern," Ivanna shared.
The charitable gala evening in Lausanne welcomed the representatives of Swiss companies, organizations, charitable associations, as well as colleagues of Ivanna. Among them were the co-founder of the IvAlive Foundation, Laurent Mer, the director of Innovaud, Patrick Barbe, the co-founder of the Ukraine Reborn charitable association, Lyubov Bondarenko, the president of Connecting Media, and the founder of the Ukrainian media in Switzerland, Destinations.ua, Inna Geletiuk, the vice-president of Connecting Media and chief editor of Destinations.ua, Natalia Kontsur, representatives of the jewelry brand Bulgari, Roberto Marino, Sophie Le Van, Sophie Bloom, former member of the National Council of Switzerland, Claude Ruey, international art business expert and founder of the Warsaw Museum Fund, Dorota Rosler, Ukrainian violinist Pavlo Vernikov, co-founder of Gnubiotics Sciences, Richard Laub, representatives of Swiss banks, EDR bank, Credit Suisse, Valiant Bank, Lombard Odier, and other guests. The main sponsor of the concert was the Swiss company Harvest Commodities, which, despite the war, continues to collaborate with Ukrainian farmers.
Harvest Commodities SA, Connection Media, and Destinations.ua supported the event.
Ukrainian virtuoso pianist and composer Evhen Khmara, whose music heals souls and awakens belief in miracles, performed for the first time in Switzerland. During the event, Maestro Khmara played his best compositions, which captivated the foreign audience. The evening was hosted by Ivanna herself.
Guests were particularly moved when the ivAlive children's choir performed. Ukrainian children forced to flee from the war sang famous songs, "Chervona Ruta" and "Kozatskomy Rodu," accompanied by Evhen.
Additionally, a charity auction took place during the event, featuring works by Ukrainian artists, including Alla Roniker, Mykola Kononenko, Mykhailo Deyak, Yuri Shapoval, Vladislav Shereshovsky, Andriy Kovtun, and Polish photographer Michal Surdej. The evening managed to raise approximately 40,000 Swiss francs.
The funds collected will be directed towards opening talent development centers for Ukrainian children in Switzerland, allowing them to engage in various creative activities such as painting, singing, piano, and dancing.
Serhiy Andrusenko, Nataliya Kontsur, Claude Ruey
Ivanna Onufriychuk explains, "During the event in Lausanne, we wanted to showcase to the local residents the immense talent of the Ukrainian nation and convey the value of supporting Ukrainians. It was important for us to find new partners and receive donations to continue developing our educational and cultural programs."
Another concert was held in Bern at the historic Yehudi Menuhin Forum concert hall. It attracted many Ukrainians as well as Swiss attendees. Evhen Khmara not only performed his original program but also played Ukrainian songs on the piano. Specifically for the event, the composer accompanied a Ukrainian violinist, Myroslav Skoryk's "Melodia," who resides in Switzerland. The children's choir also performed alongside Evhen, moving the audience to tears as they all sang in unison. A particularly touching and unifying moment was when, at the end of the concert, the virtuoso pianist, together with the guests, performed Ukrainian songs, including "Oi, u luzi chervona kalyna," "Nich yaka misyachna," and "Ridna maty moya."
As a reminder, the IvAlive Foundation regularly organizes events to support Ukrainians abroad. This year, the foundation organized a Sorochynsky Fair in Lausanne and launched the "Women's Empowerment" program. This program, developed in collaboration with the organization Ukraine Reborn, is aimed at helping Ukrainian women in Switzerland adapt to life abroad and realize their potential.