A new award was unveiled at the 2022 Chamber of Portage and District Awards Gala.

Oleksandr Hryntsiv won the Outstanding Contribution to the Community by a Newcomer Award and says he’s grateful to see the work happening for Ukrainian arrivals be recognized. He’s lived in Portage for nine years and has spent most of that time helping others transition smoothly into the community.

“There are a lot of people who require help,” explains Hryntsiv. “Sometimes, they just need to have some advice. Just to understand somebody in this community from their home country and help them, it’s really important.”

He adds, while there’s still a lot of work to do and a lot of people that would like to join the community, he’ll continue to help as much as possible. As much as he appreciates the recognition, Hryntsiv says the award wasn’t a motivating factor, as he just wants to help.

“It was a surprise for me to be called on for this event and to actually win this prize because I’m always working somewhere behind the scenes,” mentions Hryntsiv. “Answering phone calls, carrying furniture, collecting the furniture, so this was a surprise to me.”

The Awards Gala was held Friday, November 25th.