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GBN’s Daily Drop: Black Ukrainians – Learn About Eurovision Finalist Gaitana and Politician & Olympic Gold Medalist Zhan Belenuik (LISTEN)

Written by Good Black News

February 26, 2022

by Lori Lakin Hutcherson (@lakinhutcherson)

Today’s GBN Daily Drop podcast is a bonus episode for Saturday, February 26, 2022, based on the   “A Year of Good Black News” Page-A-Day®️ Calendar for 2022 format.

We highlight singer/songrwriter Gaitana and athlete-turned-politician Zhan Belenuik, two Black Ukrainians or Afro Ukrainians who represent a small but important part of the Ukrainian citizenry affected by the recent Russian invasion of that nation.

You can follow or subscribe to the Good Black News Daily Drop Podcast through Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts, or create your own RSS Feed. Or just check it out every day here on the main website (transcript below):


Hey, this Lori Lakin Hutcherson, founder and editor in chief of, here to share with you a bonus daily drop of Good Black News for Saturday, February 26th, 2022, based on the “A Year of Good Black News Page-A-Day Calendar” format, published by Workman Publishing.

As the invasion of Ukraine by Russian forces dominates global news, I’d like to dedicate this week’s bonus daily drop to the small but very real population of Afro-Ukrainians who are part of the citizenry that is struggling to survive as a nation.

Two Afro-Ukrainians with prominent international profiles are singer/ songwriter Gaitana, and politician and athlete Zhan Belenuik.

Gaitana made history when she represented Ukraine in the 2012 Eurovision Song Contest and performed the song “Be My Guest,” placing 15th in the final.

Gaitana has a lovely, soulful voice and you can learn more about her and her music, sung mostly in her native tongue, on her website,, and you can stream her songs on Apple Music and Spotify.

Zhan Belenuik also made history in Ukraine with his 2019 election to Parliament as a member of President Zelensky’s Servant of the People party. In addition to being a former member of the Ukrainian Army, Belenuik has also represented Ukraine as a Greco Roman wrestler.

Belenuik competed and won the silver medal in the 2016 Rio Olympics and brought home the gold from the Tokyo Olympics in 2020. Gaitana and Belenuik both have spoken about facing racism in their home country, but also embrace their and support their homeland.

I’d also like to shout out The Root reporter Terrell Jermaine Starr, who has reported about the history of Blacks in Ukraine, about Ukraine in general, hosts a podcast called Black Diplomats, and is currently in Ukraine reporting for CNN on the war as well as posting about it on Twitter.

To learn more about Belenuik, Gaitana and other Afro Ukrainians, check out the links to sources provided in today’s show notes and in the episode’s full transcript posted on

This has been a bonus daily drop of Good Black News, based on the “A Year of Good Black News Page-A-Day Calendar for 2022,” published by Workman Publishing, and available at,Amazon, Bookshop and other online retailers. Beats provided by and produced by White Hot.

For more Good Black News, you can check out or search and follow @goodbinlacknews anywhere on social.


Original article source: | Article may or may not reflect the views of KLEK 102.5 FM or The Voice of Arkansas Minority Advocacy Council

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