Melissa Martin, Winnipeg Free Press

Melissa Martin

Winnipeg Free Press

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  • Winnipeg Free Press
  • TorontoStar
  • The Brandon Sun

Recent articles by Melissa:

Miserable weather not stopping hardy Manitobans from camping, spending time at the lake

WASAGAMING, Man. — Under the steady thrum of the rain, which has been falling all day and just won’t stop, Bob Nickel hops out of his truck. He surveys how the camper he’s been towing is resting, tilted on the uneven ground, its tires mired in muck. → Read More

Racist supermarket slaughter was sadly inevitable

That afternoon, after visiting her husband at a nursing home, 86-year-old Ruth Whitfield stopped by a grocery store on her way home. That afternoon, Andre Mackniel went to buy a birthday cake for his three-year-old son. → Read More

School division dropped the ball with coach’s investigation, parents say

Years before a Winnipeg high school football coach was charged with offences relating to the sexual abuse and exploitation of students, parents at Vincent Massey Collegiate raised alarms with school and division officials that youths in his program were being bullied and could be in danger. → Read More

Ukrainian support effort draws diverse band of volunteers

On a park bench in central Lviv, close to a monument to poet Taras Shevchenko and, further up the street, the grand opera house that stands as the city’s most famous attraction, a man sat slouched, as if melted into the slats. The city purred in the crisp spring afternoon, come alive after the morning’s air-raid alerts; the man straightened up eagerly as I passed by. → Read More

Lviv stands firm beneath a foreboding sky

LVIV, Ukraine — As a muted sun spread over Lviv that morning, a low and droning hum slipped inside the hostel where I was still sleeping, working its way into my slowly waking ears. In those hazy first seconds of consciousness, I tried to make sense of what I was hearing: was it air strike sirens starting up again? I opened my eyes, and fumbled for my phone. → Read More

Poland welcomes Ukrainian refugees, but its handling of humanitarian crises is rarely flawless

KRAKOW, Poland — When I first arrived in Poland a little more than three weeks ago, I began taking pictures of anything I saw on the streets that pledged solidarity for Ukraine. I gave up on this project, mostly, after my collection swelled to over 100 images taken in just one city and only a couple of days. → Read More

From Odesa, by way of Pinawa, with love

WRZEŚNIA, Poland — The horses watch with cursory interest as three-year-old Timur Mykholevskiy tries to scramble over the lower planks of a fence that leads away from the pen. It’s a valiant effort, but the boy’s legs are too short to quite carry him over, so he wriggles and grunts and finally stretches his hand towards two visiting reporters. → Read More

Winnipeg-born Michael Rubenfeld helping to keep Ukraine’s broken hearts beating through art

KRAKOW — On Feb. 15, nine days before Russia invaded Ukraine, Oksana Pyzh and her husband packed up their kid, their car and a few of their things, and began the long drive west from their home in Kharkiv, towards Poland, stopping every few hours along the way. → Read More

Refugee Ukrainians far from defeated

RZESZÓW, Poland — From the outside, the guest house on the edge of Rzeszów looks quiet, tucked on a narrow road that meanders past quaint homes nestled beside sprawling green gardens. A few cars are parked in front, some with Ukrainian licence plates, but the atmosphere here is idyllic and suburban, bordering on rustic. → Read More

On one side, a war-torn nation; on the other, a community of volunteers ready to help refugees

MEDYKA, Poland — The shopping cart rattles as Art Ballard pushes it through a squashed parking lot, past a warren of small shops advertising meat and candy. Past the spot where buses pause every few minutes to pick up or drop off dozens of riders, who arrive dragging suitcases stuffed with everything they’d taken with them, when they first fled Ukraine. → Read More

Translating and speaking at rallies in Poland: expat Ukrainian a man on a mission

KRAKOW — In any of the 14 languages that Adrian Harasym can speak, the stories he has heard through this war will haunt him. There was the woman from Bucha, who’d hid in her potato cellar until hunger drove her to flee over streets dotted with corpses. → Read More

Manitoba-bound mothers fleeing Ukraine with children are terrified, exhausted

WARSAW — On the long bus ride out of Ukraine, Nataliia Cherevko’s son, 11-year-old Bohdan, stopped eating. His stomach hurt. Behind them on the bus was another mother, with two sons, and one of them couldn’t eat, either. → Read More

Ukrainian refugee on her way to new life in Winnipeg

WARSAW — It’s a bitterly cold morning in Poland’s capital, at the heart of the city’s diplomatic row. Outside the concrete-and-glass edifice of the Canadian embassy, about four dozen people are waiting, mostly women with children in tow. → Read More

AMC must answer questions from vulnerable, exploited women in the Indigenous community

At this point, in a long and haphazard reckoning with prominent men who exploit their power over women, it’s impossible to avoid the deja vu, the way the broad strokes of each incident are carbon copies of the others. It’s only the details that change: fill in the name, fill in the dates. → Read More

Skipping her own team a natural move for Lawes

It’s hard to describe what these last weeks have been like for Kaitlyn Lawes. There were the Olympics, which were beautiful and heartbreaking in equal measure, followed weeks later by the breakup of the iconic Team Jennifer Jones. → Read More

Kindness, commitment amplified in pandemic-muted city hospital

The nurse who tended my mother sang sometimes, while she worked. She sang hymns and prayed, and talked about gentle things. → Read More

Winnipeg curling legend Jennifer Jones to join forces with Zacharias squad

When Jennifer Jones announced her iconic team was splitting ways after this season, it was the end of a long chapter in her curling career. But she was not closing the book. → Read More

Masked at mall: old habits die hard as mandate ends

Just after noon Tuesday, the food court at Polo Park mall is buzzing.Although it is the day the public health indoor mask mandate lifts in Manitoba, the vast majority of shoppers — nine out of every 10, at least — are still wearing one. → Read More

Team Jones announces current season will be their last

Moments after Jennifer Jones and her team learned they wouldn’t make the Olympic playoffs, they gathered in front of a CBC camera, heartbroken and tearful but still, at the end of a rocky road in Beijing, united. They spoke about the love and the gratitude they had for Canada, and each other. → Read More

For asylum-seekers, the dangerous trek across the Canada-U.S. border was just the beginning

The first year was hard, but after that Subir Barman’s life began to fit together, like pieces to a puzzle that had been strewn all over the world. He stayed in Winnipeg for a while. → Read More