Everyone started Monday morning by gathering outside the camp gates for a grand opening. There were balloons hung and a ribbon cutting. You cannot imagine how Ukrainian kids love balloons. A cultural note (c.n.) here is that balloons are the ultimate in celebration to kids and adults alike. I've even seen them at weddings. From there they went to a general assembly where Pastor Roman made introductions all around, followed by tea and cookies. Another c.n. is that everyone in Ukraine drinks tea all the way down to small children. That is hot black tea, by the way, for you southerners, regardless of temperature outside.
They are teaching the children about American holidays and Monday was Thanksgiving. Brad did a talk about that in the morning and how we celebrate. Then it was followed in the evening with some history on the holiday.
The children split into three groups so they could rotate through three bases. English was taught by Sarah, Brad did games and Kelsey did music. For crafts they did a turkey by tracing their hand and learned how we use the turkey in our holiday.
There is also a free time each day with lots of sports equipment for the children to play with. Jeff challenged Pastor Roman to a game of ping pong (heavy duty athletics, if you ask me).
In the evening after dinner was a treasure hunt organized by one of the Ukrainian ladies (did I mention there is a whole host of Ukrainians help our team) who works for Club of the Future. The children were in teams and had to answer some 20 questions from the Bible that led them to objects to locate objects like worms, grain and string. The winning team got prizes,what fun. Christmas will be the holiday for today. Keep praying.
By the way, Jeff told me last night that since early on he has not been leading morning devotional and left that for Jamie to do as team leader. He is there to make sure everything runs smoothly and occasionally he translates as the need arises, but they have others there translating, like our daughter Leah for one.