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Cpl. Andrew “Boomer” Eykelenboom legacy lives on helping children in the Ukraine

The Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) mission in Ukraine under Operation UNIFIER goes well beyond the training of Ukrainian Armed Forces and soldiers part of the operation have made it a point to connect with the local community and support local charities.

Through the help of the Boomer’s Legacy Fund, CAF member on Operation UNIFIER, led by Capt. Min Kim, are supporting the Dzherelo Children’s Rehabilitation Centre and a project to support a local veteran. 

Canadian Armed Forces Chaplain, Captain Min Kim, prepares to lead Easter morning services at the International Peacekeeping and Security Centre in Starychi, Ukraine. Padre Kim is currently serving on Operation UNIFIER.

Canadian Armed Forces Chaplain, Captain Min Kim, prepares to lead Easter morning services at the International Peacekeeping and Security Centre in Starychi, Ukraine. Padre Kim is currently serving on Operation UNIFIER.

“This is an additional role given to chaplains here on deployed operations…I am grateful to help them build a relationship,” said Capt. Kim, JTF-U Chaplain and lead on the initiative.

The Dzherelo Children’s Rehabilitation Centre, founded by a Ukranian Canadian, works to improve the lives of both children with disabilities and their families through consultation, rehabilitation treatment, education, and counselling.

Captain Marie-Claude Otis amuses the children during the visit of Joint Task Force –Ukraine personnel to the Dzherelo Rehabilitation Centre on July 27, 2016 in Lviv, Ukraine. Photo by : Capt J.P. Coulombe, Joint Task Force – Ukraine

Captain Marie-Claude Otis amuses the children during the visit of Joint Task Force –Ukraine personnel to the Dzherelo Rehabilitation Centre on July 27, 2016 in Lviv, Ukraine. Photo by : Capt J.P. Coulombe, Joint Task Force – Ukraine

Hydrotherapy is the most common form of rehabilitation for young children with physical and intellectual needs

CAF soldiers applied to the fund for approximately $6,700 to support the Centre.

The second project would support Maxim Klokun, a Ukranian Armed Forces veteran. Klokun is a combat veteran who lost his leg while taking part in anti-terrorist operations.

Kim had applied to Boomer’s Legacy Fund to request $9,000 to help Klokun purchase a prosthetic leg.

“We’d like to support him, so we applied to the Boomer’s Legacy Fund,” added Kim.

The funds that would go towards a new prosthetic are still pending approval.

Corporal Francis Nadeau amuses the children during a visit of Joint Task Force – Ukraine personnel to the Dzherelo Rehabilitation Centre on July 27, 2016 in Lviv, Ukraine. Photo by : Capt J.P. Coulombe, Joint Task Force – UkraineDC

Corporal Francis Nadeau amuses the children during a visit of Joint Task Force – Ukraine personnel to the Dzherelo Rehabilitation Centre on July 27, 2016 in Lviv, Ukraine. Photo by : Capt J.P. Coulombe, Joint Task Force – UkraineDC

Being able to support local charities during their deployment, says Kim, is another way Canada can show its support of the Ukrainian people.

“This is meaningful, and it gives us an additional sense of contributing to Ukraine,” stated Kim.

Since it was established in 2006, Boomer’s Legacy has provided funds so that CAF members serving around the world could contribute to areas most affected by war and poverty.

The fund is named after Cpl. Andrew “Boomer” Eykelenboom, a CAF medic, who was killed in Afghanistan by a suicide bomber on August 11, 2006.

To make a donation to the fund visit click here to visit the website

Featured Image: Lieutenant-Colonel Tim Arsenault, Commander Joint Task Force – Ukraine and the Director, Dzherelo Rehabilitation Centre, Mrs. Anna Haiduchok, talk with a little girl during the visit of members from Joint Task Force – Ukraine on July 27, 2016 in Lviv, Ukraine.

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