Sunflower pins by a Mi’kmaw artist to raise money for humanitarian aid in Ukraine

As heartbreaking images and horrific stories emerge from Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Vida Woodworth wanted to replace overwhelming feelings of hopelessness and hopelessness with support and care.

It’s work she supports daily at the After Trauma Empowerment Network (ATEN) in Shubenacadie, Nova Scotia.

She is a volunteer and chair of the board of directors of the non-profit resource center that “helps empower individuals, families, and communities affected by trauma.”

“Many tears have been shed since the violence and shelling began in Ukraine,” Woodworth said.

She turned to another ATEN volunteer, Leanna MacLeod, a Mi’kmaw artist, to create something to sell in support of the victims of the invasion.

“After hearing about the crisis in Ukraine, my heart cried out for all of them,” MacLeod said. “I wanted to reach out to the solidarity and support of the Ukrainian people.

The back of the brooch is signed by MacLeod. She made 100 pins. (Submitted by Leanna MacLeod)

They opted for a beaded teardrop pin and thoughtful details that represent Ukraine.

The tear is blue leather and has a birchbark backing. Blue is one of the two stripes on the Ukrainian flag and represents the deep blue sky of the country. It also symbolizes freedom, trust, loyalty, wisdom, trust and faith.

While the yellow stripe represents the golden wheat fields of Ukraine, the bright color is a sign of hope, positivity, joy, honor and loyalty.

Each teardrop has a yellow sunflower, the flower of Ukraine, beaded in the center.

Each flower has a beaded green stem which is complemented by a gold bead.

The green was used to represent the comforting and soothing color found in nature while the gold bead represents the many precious resources found in Ukraine including its brave, strong and resilient people.

Each tear takes about two hours to make from start to finish.

MacLeod will create a limited run of 100 pins to sell for a minimum donation of $50 for each pin. Each pin is numbered and signed by the artist.

All proceeds will be donated to humanitarian relief efforts for those fleeing the invasion and to help Ukrainians seeking refuge in Nova Scotia.

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