About Us

Two Regimes

Witnesses to the HOLODOMOR and the HOLOCAUST

Two Regimes is the life’s work of two Ukrainian women: A Mother (Teodora Verbitskaya), who wrote about her life from 1920 to 1945, and her daughter Nadia Werbitzky, a professionally trained artist who painted from memory. Teodora and Nadia were witnesses to both the Holodomor and the Holocaust in Mariupol, Ukraine.

“Two Regimes” tells a true and powerful story of survival under the two regimes of Stalin and Hitler: before, during and after the Holodomor of 1932-33, the Holocaust of 1933-1945 and WWII.  Teodora’s family witnessed first-hand, the  atrocities of two brutal dictators during their reigns of terror that starved entire populations and  forced 7,500 Jews from Mariupol, Soviet Ukraine, to their murderous deaths at the hands of the Nazis in Soviet Ukraine, in 1941.

Afterward, Teodora and her two daughters were sent to Germany to serve as slave laborers. The forced labor camps were liberated by United States troops in 1945. Teodora then emigrated to welcoming Canada after spending time in displaced persons camps.

Two Regimes was written to validate the lives of those Ukrainians, Jews, Greeks, and others whose lives were lost and whose voices were silenced forever.

Our Goal

Two Regimes (A Memoir) by Teodora Verbitskaya as translated by her granddaughter, Lucianne Vanilar, published by Kendall-Hunt Publishing (https://he.kendallhunt.com/two_regimes), is the story of Teodora Verbitskaya and her young daughters, Nadia and Lyucia, who were swept up in the collateral damage of genocide, war and survival before, during, and after World War II. This memoir (Two Regimes) is the story of three young women’s love, faith, courage, strength, determination, intelligence, and sheer will to live in the face of the worst adversity. This true survival experience is an inspiration to everyone, but particularly for girls and women, who must often pick up the pieces during or after war to start life anew.

The manuscript of Two Regimes, with paintings by Nadia Werbitzky, provides the perfect resource for springboarding a multi-course study for in-class discussion. The study of this collection can host or facilitate important conversations regarding the impact of genocide and war on families both then and now.

Our goal is to provide Two Regimes as a primary resource for guides and lesson plans for grades 4-12, and now a University Course created by Kendall Hansen, utilizing this true story as a foundation for study. In this remarkable memoir, both mother’s and daughter’s works were created decades apart and published posthumously. Two Regimes brings their works together for future generations.

Two Regimes is striving for Holodomor Awareness, Holocaust Awareness and Genocide Awareness.

Other Information

Two Regimes meets FOUR mandates.  These four mandates address Women, Character, the Holocaust and Genocide Education.

Importantly there are a number of situations in Two Regimes that magnify the issue of bullying and how the family was able to cope with it – creatively.

A copy of the book Two Regimes was hand-delivered and accepted into the library of Yad Vashem in Israel by Dr. Miriam Klein Kassenoff, Holocaust Educator and Child Survivor of the Holocaust.

*Holodomor – (Ho-lo-do-`mor)


The second pronunciation in the YouTube video is the preferable one.

Holodomor is a term to describe the Genocidal Famine in Ukraine in 1932-33.  It comes from the Ukrainian words holod (hunger) and moryty (to inflict death) – in other words, “death inflicted by starvation.”  The Holodomor was a man-made famine, Stalin’s state sponsored starvation of the Ukrainian people.