Polina Bilinsky Mycak is Multicultural NSW’s new Youth Advisory Board member. This is her story.
I am excited to bring my passion for promoting multicultural principles as the newest youth member of Multicultural NSW’s Advisory Board.
I’m an Australian-born Ukrainian – both my maternal and paternal grandparents immigrated from Ukraine and passed down the Ukrainian language, culture and traditions through my family.
My interest in cross-culturalism comes from my appreciation of growing up in Sydney’s diverse, multifaith and multicultural society. My strong familial connections and love for Ukrainian culture and traditions meant that from a very young age, I’ve always felt both Australian and Ukrainian.
I always knew that I wanted to take part in showcasing and passing on the traditions of Ukraine. Ukrainian dance and song truly embodies the colourful beauty, joy and uniqueness of Ukrainian culture.
I am fortunate to have been raised by strong-willed, intelligent women who have taught me everything I know in life. This inspires and drives me to work with the Macquarie University Women’s Collective to promote intersectionality and address feminist issues, with a special interest in issues which affect women in culturally and linguistically diverse communities.
I am currently studying a Bachelor of Psychology and a Bachelor of Arts majoring in anthropology. When I was deciding what to study, I knew that this would be the perfect combination of all my interests.
Although I still live in Coogee, I spend several days a week volunteering in Lidcombe, where many Ukrainian cultural organisations are based. I’ve been volunteering for several years. As a result of my immersion in Ukrainian culture and its community, I will always be very proud to be an Australian-Ukrainian!
In the future, I aspire to work within the area of multicultural policy and practice.