Who is Dona Novack? A portrait of an Human Rights Activist

The independent journalist Frank García, author of the text.
The independent journalist Frank García, author of the text.


We were supposed to meet in December 2013 during his visit to Cuba, which, however, he couldn’t make because somebody decided that he wasn’t allowed to enter the country. If he had kept his job as a tourist guide in his native Prague (of which, by the way, he doesn’t stop talking), he could have a more peaceful life now, but he decided to dedicate himself to helping Latin-American nations. Apart from Cuba he knows Bolivia and he has also worked with Indians in Mexico for a few months. In that country he experienced one of the most difficult moments in his life, when he and his wife were assaulted at gunpoint.

He likes Latin-American culture in general, but he’s mostly interested in the future of our Cuban nation. When he was 15, he attended a concert given by the Rolling Stones, which so impressed him that he still has long hair, no matter that he’s 38 now. He loves liberty, but not libertinism – that’s why he’s so demanding, punctual and encourages us make the most of our time because time is something not to be wasted.

He grew up in a working-class neighbourhood of his native city and he is a follower of the ideas of Vaclav Havel. This may be the reason why he identifies himself so much with what’s happening in Cuba and why he strives so hard to help us. In return, he would only wish to visit our land. I hope that soon in the future we will be able to make his dream true by giving him and his two small children an opportunity to visit Cuba.

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