Lviv University students raise a quarter of a million hryvnias for tactical medicine

On 9 February 2024, the House of Scientists once again played a waltz melody: students of Ivan Franko National University of Lviv resumed the tradition of holding a charity event – the Vienna Ball. After a four-year break, the university youth organised the charity ball to raise funds for the needs of the Armed Forces of Ukraine. The event raised a total of UAH 252,500.

Previously, the exquisite charity event was held annually, but the pandemic and then the full-scale war interrupted the long-standing tradition. The last time Lviv University students held the Vienna Ball was in December 2019, when all the proceeds were used to help the Western Ukrainian Children’s Medical Centre.

Now, in the second year of the full-scale struggle against the Russian aggressor, when the Ukrainian army is in particular need of support, the Student Government of Ivan Franko National University of Lviv organised the Vienna Ball to raise funds and subsequently transfer them to the Serhiy Prytula Charitable Foundation for purchasing essentials of tactical medicine.

The event began with a melodic performance of the University’s Folk Chamber Orchestra, after which the Rector of Lviv University Volodymyr Melnyk addressed the participants, including representatives of the academic community and other guests. “I sincerely congratulate everyone who came together with the idea of reviving the Vienna Ball. Today we are not only restoring a long-standing tradition, but also declaring that Lviv University affirms the indestructibility of the young Ukrainian student spirit, declaring it as a counterbalance to Russian barbarism and Russian spirituality. This event confirms that Ukraine exists, Ukraine is undefeated, and young people are creating our future based on the traditions of national culture and belief in our own strength,” highlated Volodymyr Melnyk.

The participants were also greeted by the head of the Student Government, Anzhelika Kulchytska: “Our Viennese Ball is not only about a beautiful atmosphere, good music, exquisite clothes, but above all it is about a great goal and unity in the desire to help our Armed Forces of Ukraine, thanks to which we are able to be here today. The student community is doing its best to bring our victory closer, and that is why we see a special meaning in reviving traditions that mobilize resources and allow us to involve as many people as possible in the financial support of the army.”

Later, all those present had the opportunity to plunge into the atmosphere of the elegant event, watching the debutants’ graceful waltz, and try their hand at mastering ballroom moves by taking part in a waltz masterclass. The cultural programme also included performances by OKS and IHRYK and a dance by students of Lviv University.

An important part of the Vienna Ball was the charity auction, which featured two handmade necklaces by the author, a book by former British Prime Minister, Honorary Doctor of the Ivan Franko National University of Lviv Boris Johnson, “The Churchill Factor”, signed by him, a collection of poems by Artur Dron, a graduate of the Faculty of Journalism at Lviv University and a soldier of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, “Here We Were”, signed by him, and a book by Vasyl Karpiuk, “Dovbush. Dignity or Oblivion” signed by actor Oleksiy Hnatkovsky. Other items bidded for the auction participants included an FC Karpaty T-shirt signed by the team’s players and head coach Myron Markevych, a shell casing from the 215th Battalion of the 125th Brigade, a hoodie signed by Frank Wilde and a painting by Lviv painter Lubomyr Medvid.

Another charitable element of the event was a lottery with gift certificates from Ukrainian brands, accessories and tasty gifts.

During the event, everyone was able to immerse themselves in an unforgettable atmosphere of classical music, colourful flowers and a sense of involvement in a great cause.