A Call for Ukrainian OER for Refugee Learners

I posted a question about ideas for reusing Ukrainian Wikipedia content in another activity where @vahidm is answering questions about using Wikipedia for learning – he introduced me to an interesting open source platform Kiwix that enables download/access of Wikipedia content for reading offline.


Just so you know, you are already helping. I passed the link to the Canadian pages @cogdog shared to Norwegian authorities, that were very grateful. If, as you say, there are large Ukrainian communities in Canada, maybe Canadian authorities are willing to do some curating, so that the global community will have an easier way to navigate and find relevant resources for their context? Do anyone have connections from Canadian Educational Authorities?
When it comes to translating, I think that for children, it is most urgent to have access to open resources in Ukrainian. Then there will be a need that each country must answer, and that is type “Welcome to Norway/Canada/France…”-resources, with information about the country they have arrived in - at different levels.

Just as an example what is possible, see what medical educators at McGill University did to create quickly medical / trauma training materials including instructional videos with Ukrainian narration… produced in 24 hours!


This would be good to know what information is needed about the countries welcoming refugees.

Is there any overlap with the articles about the countries in Wikipedia (ones in Ukrainian)?

I am looking at the Wikipedia page for the refugees crisis
Ukrainian refugee crisis (2022–present) - Wikipedia (not available in Ukrainian, I see more of a portal page for information sources)

But I see the list of countries having announced being open to refugees and wonder if some clever use of Wikidata could connect that to the information page for each country.

Or on the sidebar of the Crisis pahe are category links to things like Immigration to Poland and Immigration to Slovakia

It seems like with community expertise in both Wikipedia and perhaps translation, something could be done (all of this conjecture on my own limited experience).

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Don’t forget the language resources available through the COERLL network, there may be something here of use?

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Somewhat related, at least on the archiving front–

Saving Ukrainian Cultural Heritage Online (SUCHO):

We are a group of cultural heritage professionals – librarians, archivists, researchers, programmers – working together to identify and archive at-risk sites, digital content, and data in Ukrainian cultural heritage institutions while the country is under attack. We are using a combination of technologies to crawl and archive sites and content, including the Internet Archive’s Wayback Machine, the Browsertrix crawler and the ArchiveWeb.page browser extension and app of the Webrecorder project

So also this story from the Internet Archive on the work of SUCHO.

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This came up in a session this morning (well I brought it up) where there was conversation about Wikipedia’s important role in OER.

@Paola mentioned active work in the Ukraine right now to digitize art and cultural artifacts, mentioning archivists working in “basements” under bombs falling, doing all they can while there is electricity.

I hope she can share more, all I found so far beyond the SUCHO initiative above is an article in the Globe and Mail

I hope more can chime in with ideas what open educators can contribute / do.

For more on SUCHO…

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Hi @cogdog, Hi everyone,
I am in contact with one of our ENOEL members; she lives in Dnipro, lately in the basement of her home with family members (grandchildren and daughters-in-law). Here is what she wrote to me in one of her last messages: “Ukrainian librarians, despite often unbearable conditions, continue to work remotely and physically in their institutions (if possible). But we are still working in groups of volunteers: we bake pies, weave camouflage nets, help people in need get medicine, clothes, water, food. There is enough work for everyone.” “Of course, as far as possible, in the conditions of frequent lack of electricity, communications, air raids and missile attacks, we continue our library work.” “Libraries provide training in emergency medical assistance. The libraries were fitted out as hostels, points of assistance to displaced persons who are forced to leave their homes.” So: maybe sharing OER related to emergency medical assistance might help? And other very practical subjects related to emergency situations? Most of all if in video format, as far as they are able to download them. As an example, there is a doctor, Dr Nelya Melnitchouk in Brigham and Women’s Hospital, who is recording videos about how to stop the bleed (Training Video: How to Stop the Bleed - Навчальне Відео: Як Зупинити Кровотечу і Врятувати Життя - YouTube). This is not a CC-licensed video (maybe they do not know about licenses), but at present time I think any resource like this might be helpful. If there are videos like this one that can support people who do not have medical skills, it would be helpful to share. If they are OER, even better.

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Thanks for sharing this direct connection. I thought the story from McGill University was promising, but everything points to “soon to be available on the McGill platform”

Just some scouting here…

Okay here is a downloadable OER on Emergency Trauma

Less related to emergency situations, I was peripherally part of this BCCampus open text on Vital Sign Measurement

African Health OER Network: Advanced Emergency Trauma (might be same course as above)

OpenRN Text on Nursing Skills

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Just because I keep this on my radar, via twitter I came across the Ukrainian Canadian Congress based in Winnipeg, which “Represents the Ukrainian Canadian community before the people and Government of Canada”

On twitter as @ukrcancongress

I can’t imagine this as an environment of education, but this is what’s happening:

Again, I ask, what can / are open educators able to do/doing?

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Again not directly related to Ukraine language OER, but potential information sources

I experimented with the ResearchBuzz Firehose service by adding a tag for education, only 2 results but did find from the prolific k12 educational resource curator Larry Ferlazzo a sprawling list of news, resources about teaching about the conflict

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I wanted to share this here, since it seems like an appropriate place to drop it. “Amid the terror of war, efforts to keep science alive in Ukraine”

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Just announced today, the formation of Ukrainian Global University

Ukrainian government, educational institutions, and civil society organizations jointly launch Ukrainian Global University (UGU). It is a global network that brings together the world’s best educational institutions. This non-profit initiative aims to connect Ukrainian students, fellows, scientists, and tutors with educational institutions worldwide, newly offered scholarships, fellowships, and postdoc programs. The platform ensures that the displaced students, scholars, and fellows are not abandoned; it also supports those who are willing to study/do research abroad in order to come back and rebuild Ukraine. The main goal of the UGU initiative is to overcome the devastating consequences of Russia’s aggressive war and jointly with the international intellectual community develop ideas and practices to build a new Ukraine.

An announcement from 2U (who acquired EdX) about their decision to stop hosting of courses from Russian University and extend access to their campus services to Ukrainian students.

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SUCHO is doing an impressive amount of digital archive rescue, see this summary of what librarians are doing to use Webrecorder digital tools to archive copies of key Ukrainian culture web sites that are quickly disappearing


All grass roots effort…

Over the past month, SUCHO has developed systematic, and creative, way to go about its work. There’s a master spreadsheet where volunteers detail all the Ukrainian museums, libraries, and archives that need to have their websites backed up or ones that have been completed. To develop this list, SUCHO’s organizers receive tips from librarians and archivists across the world who may know of a rare museum in Ukraine that needs to have its work backed up.

Other volunteers have become sleuths, using Google Maps to take a digital walk down Ukrainian streets, looking for any signs that might say “museum” or “library” and trying to find out if it has a website that needs archiving.

It started with a tweet from a music librarian at Tufts University


This is how the world is responding, impressive!

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The Internet Archive announces all of its books and periodicals are available to Ukrainian libraries via inter-library loan:

Hi everyone,
please find attached a text written by Tetiana Kolesnykova, a librarian in Dnipro at the Ukrainian State University of Science and Technologies, who shares her personal and professional experience with the first steps in OE during a time of crisis. Tetiana already agreed to share this text and disseminate it as widely as possible: she wrote it in Ukrainian and another librarian from Ukraine, @Mira, living in the Netherland, was so kind to help Tetiana translate it into English.
As members of the Open Education global community, and as human beings, I think this text is worth five minutes of our time.

OE developments in UA - en.pdf (60.3 KB)

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From asking on twitter for some responses to Tetiana’s message:

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