ALENA ROSSfacecommjun2018.JPG

PEDIATRICIAN, PROFESSOR, HEALTH CONSULTANT

Tell us a little about your career.

I have two higher educations, a medical degree and a degree in the field of natural sciences. As a result, among my professions, I am a pediatrician, a professor of biology, and a health consultant. In Ukraine, I worked for almost 20 years as a pediatrician, and in Israel for 18 years as a family doctor and biology teacher.

How long have you lived in Canada, and why did you choose to move here?

I came to Canada in 2007 to be close to my daughter and grandchildren, whom I am very proud of. In the area where we settled, there are many Jews who came from the former Soviet Union.

Tell us a little about your family background.

My paternal grandfather, Joseph, was a teacher of mathematics in Zhmerinka. I did not meet my maternal grandfather, Solomon – he and the whole family were brutally killed by the Germans in 1942. One family hid them, and another gave them away. My mother, Sarah Solomonovna, had left to study at Odessa University in 1939, which saved her life. She began her career immediately after the liberation of Vinnytsia from the Germans, as a teacher of biochemistry at the Vinnitsa Medical Institute. My mother was very fond of students. It’s a small world: I recently met with one of my mother's former students. My mother told me a lot about our family’s Jewish roots, about her father, who was a musician in the Tsarist army, and about his father – my great-grandfather – who was cantor.

What do you do in your free time? Do you have any hobbies?

I do not have any free time. My work is my pleasure at the same time. In my childhood, I dreamed of being a doctor and a teacher. And dreams come true: I managed to embody both. I really like helping people. Based on the knowledge gained in the process of studying at two universities, as well as my forty years of work experience, I thankfully am able to succeed in helping. People who are disillusioned with traditional medicine often turn to me. I once met a woman in a store whose face was distorted with pain. I was able to quickly discern the nature of her problem, and I gave her great advice that resolved the issue and enabled her to live pain-free. I help people with a variety of issues: Problems with pressure, with joints, with appetite, with nutrition and care for kids of all age groups, with problems of the gastrointestinal tract, obesity, etc. Not only do I help people in person with health advice, but I also write articles that I publish online. Since my childhood I have engaged in various creative crafts: embroidery, dance, rhythmic gymnastics, theater and sewing. 

Given the opportunity to meet anyone, who would you choose?

I would very much like to speak with my mother again. Because she was always literally a storehouse of knowledge, she could always explain everything. My mother taught me to think, to learn. If she did not know the answer to the question that was worrying me, she would recommend the perfect book that would clear it up. My mother was a friend, a teacher, an indisputable authority. I still do not have enough of it. 

What are your future plans?

I would like to do everything I can to ensure that the people around me are healthy and happy. I feel that people need it, and this is what fills my life with meaning.