Author: Malgorzata P. Bonikowska

The pandemic… Every day brings us new numbers – every single one of them represents someone whose life has been affected by this horrifying pandemic that has changed our world in ways we could not have imagined or predicted. Someone infected or deceased. Those numbers keep growing every day and we all pray or wish for the day when we hear that they have begun to drop.  It’s a time of emergency and nothing around us is normal. As I announced to you last time, for the duration of the pandemic, I will be presenting to you various experts and…

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This story is featured in Episode 72 Dr. Kustra completed his Master training at University of Toronto and during his doctoral studies moved to Stanford University in California where he completed his doctoral dissertation and post-doctoral training. In 2001 he became Assistant Professor in Biostatistics at the University of Toronto’s Dalla Lana School of Public Health (then Department of Public Sciences at Faculty of Medicine), where he has been working ever since. Dr. Kustra currently teaches mathematical basis for Biostatistical Methods, and application of AI and Machine Learning methods in Health Research. He has published numerous peer-reviewed articles on statistical methodology…

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Who would have thought just an month ago, when I was getting your Episode 71 ready, that the next one will be produced in a totally different world and therefore will not contain its regular segments. A while back Maria Rozanska from Just Be Cooking and I recorded a conversation about Polish Easter traditions – which are all about being together, having the Easter basket blessed in church, sharing hard boiled eggs with family members and relatives the same way we share oplatek (the wafer) before Christmas Eve dinner. None of this is going to happen this year. It will…

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This story is featured in Episode 71 Canada – this good country, always on top in all the world rankings of safety, living conditions, happiness. But there is also its other face, which has been exposed in the last years – the disturbing history of Canada’s relationship with its aboriginal peoples, those who had been here for millennia before the Europeans came.  The infamous residential schools were government-sponsored religious boarding schools established to assimilate Indigenous children into Euro-Canadian culture. They appeared roughly after 1880 and existed for a hundred years. With their aim “to kill the Indian in the child”…

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In Episode 71 you will hear: Interviews: • “Memory is Our Homeland” –  a tribute to those whose story was never told This happened during WWII, after the Soviet Union invaded Poland from the east just 17 days after the Germans attacked Poland from the west, thus beginning the second world war. Thousands of Polish families were forcefully deported to labour camps in Siberia and other parts of the Soviet Union, where many of them died of starvation, disease and exhaustion. Then, when Germany attacked its Soviet ally in 1941, Poles were freed by Stalin and made their way south,…

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This story is featured in Episode 71 Our loyal POLcast listeners will surely remember a very popular story we featured over two episodes – Episode 46 and Episode 47, entitled “A child’s journey from the Arctic to the Equator” (Part 1 and Part 2), where I interviewed our POLcast friend Irene Tomaszewski, autor and the editor-in-chief of a great online magazine Cosmopolitan Review. We talked about her childhood and the unbelievable journey she and her family made from Siberia to Africa. This happened during WWII, after the Soviet Union invaded Poland from the east just 17 days after the Germans…

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This story is featured in Episode 70 It’s fantastic that children of emigrants, Poles who settled in other countries such as Canada, even though they were often born and educated here, are interetsed in their roots, cultural heritage and want to incorporate their Polishness into their identity. There are a few Polish Canadian youth organizations, including the one and only Quo Vadis movement, which we have featured on POLcast. A Polish Canadian young professionals’ organization, whose launch we celebrated on POLcast last year – Konekt is a bit different from other such groups. It’s been growing and expanding. To learn…

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This story is featured in Episode 70 I am introducing to you our new POLcast collaborator – Maria Rozynska and her Just Be Cooking. Maria will be collaborating with POLcast and will have her own segment in each episode.  Originally from Warsaw, Maria Rozynska grew up in a Polish household observing her mother, grandmother and great grandmother create consistently yummy Easter European cuisine picking up generations of knowledge and recipes. They were the recipes worth talking about and ones Maria wanted to spread. Through her cultural cooking school Just Be Cooking, Maria now teaches people how to make traditional food,…

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In Episode 70 you will hear: Interviews: • A no-barrier approach to Polishness It’s fantastic that children of emigrants, Poles who settled in other countries such as Canada, even though they were often born and educated here, are interetsed in their roots, cultural heritage and want to incorporate their Polishness into their identity. There are a few Polish Canadian youth organizations, including the one and only Quo Vadis movement, which we have featured on POLcast. A Polish Canadian young professionals’ organization, whose launch we celebrated on POLcast last year – Konekt is a bit different from other such groups. It’s…

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This story is featured in Episode 70 How can knowing multiple languages help you stay alive? A Polish American academic Tadeusz “Tad” Haska survived WWII and the stalinist repressions thanks to his unusual linguistics talent. This incredible story was lovingly described by his granddaughter Stefanie Naumann in her book  How Languages Saved Me: A Polish Story of Survival, released in September 2019 with Koehler Books. *** Winner of the Royal Dragonfly Book Award *** 2019 First Place – Historical Nonfiction 2019 First Place – Memoir It’s a great book and a must for anyone interested in world war II and…

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