Osman Kumara from Sierra-Leone Raises Funds For Ukrainian Army (Photos, Video)

Mr.Osman Kumara, a 21-year old African student of Ternopil University, raises funds for our Army be playing the trumpet and sinding Ukrainian songs.
Exotic quartet, in which Osman participates, can be seen and listened to in the downtown almost every evening.
04/08/2015
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Mr.Osman Kumara, a 21-year old African student of Ternopil University, raises funds for our Army be playing the trumpet and sinding Ukrainian songs. Exotic quartet, in which Osman participates, can be seen and listened to in the downtown almost every evening. Clear trumpet sound is harmonically supplemented by a double bass, accordion and a drum. Several dozen people gather around the band, someone starts to dance.

— They’re playing great; besides, they do this for the sake of the Army, so I’m totally for it! — Oleh, a man from Ternopil, Says, while his little daughter puts some money to the band’s box.

The money raised during their performances are donated to local volunteers who help the ATO fighters. They only leave some money for themselves when their musical instruments need repairing — just enough to cover the reparation expenditures, local media “Our Day” reports.

Trumpeter Osman Kumara came to Ukraine from Sierra-Leone, where military conflicts lasted for 11 years. Current situation in the East of Ukraine reminded him of his Homeland, and the African student decided to help the Ukrainian as much as he could.

He even wanted to join a volunteer battalion at first and defend Ukraine, which he tosl to his University mates, explaining that many volunteers and peacemakers from all over the world helped his country, too. the friends advised him to think twice, as it wasn’t good to look that much different when at war. “So I found another way — I decided to raise funds for those who actually fight,” — Mr.Kumara says.

The African student came to Ukraine in December 2013. A year and a half later, he was already able to speak Ukrainian, made new friends and even created a small music band. He studies computer science at Ternopil National Economics University.

As narrated by his friend and band-mate Mr.Stepan Loik, he has never seen another foreigner who had such a great love for Ukraine.
— Osman says, “I live in this country, and I fully realize that if the war isn’t over in the East, it’ll son be here. Of course, I have to help.” He really understands our pain as he experienced a long-lasting armed conflict in his country. He is keen of Ukrainian culture and music… I haven’t seen another foreigner who had such a great love for Ukraine.

Ms.Tetyana Yankova, a teacher of foreign languages at the University, told that foreign students of the preparatory department learn Ukrainian and often ask about Ukrainian History and culture, as well as about some historical events they wished to understand better and the context of those events.

— Osman asked me once if I could bring a recording of ukrainian anthem, as they wanted to listen to it. We learned the lyrics at the lessons and recorded the notes. His interest grew every single day as he learned it, and later he developed interest in other national songs as well.

Osman’s family, parents and sisters, live in Freetown, the capital of Sierra-Leone. He says they are very understanding of his decision to help Ukraine.

Despite his young age, he has already completed his military service in his homeland, and playing military songs on the trumpet was one of his duties. He learned to play the instrument on his own, figuring the tunes out aurally. This is exactly what he did with Ukrainian folk songs later: the melodies are full of harmony, he says, so the rhythm is easy to remember. And of course it’s easier when you understand the lyrics.

Osman and his friends are on University summer holidays now. He says that he’s going to continue playing in Ternopol and help Ukrainian army.

— I know pretty well what the war means and how painful it is, — the student explains.

His bandmates often wear traditional Ukrainian embroidered shirts; Osman has one, too. He also has a Trident (Ukrainian emblem) shaped pendant.

— You see, people come as far as from Africa! — an elderly man says, having noticed the “for the ATO” sign on the accordion case.

Osman smiles friendly, and then puts his instrument down and, with his slight accent, starts singing “My dear mother, you haven’t slept enough at nights...” (a Ukrainian folk song).

Here’s the Ukrainian anthem performed by Osman Kumara:

Here’s the Ukrainian anthem performed by Osman Kumara
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