Most adults can look back and fondly recollect an experience, person or even a gift that positively influenced our lives. Maybe it was your parents’ sacrifice that enabled you to receive an excellent education; perhaps it was a coach who encouraged you to never give up; maybe it was a particularly hard time in your life that led you to depend on God; or possibly it was a gift from a complete stranger that set you on the path to where you are today. However, most orphans in Ukraine do not find themselves in positive circumstances or surrounded by supportive people. Because of the isolation and social rejection that many Ukrainian orphans face, they are not privy to the social resources and networking opportunities that many of us have had.
This summer, we worked alongside the only Christian school in Cherkassy, the Sophia School, to put on a week-long English Language Camp for their students. Five years ago, this school grew out of a desire for Christian education and it has struggled, met challenges and grown. To be honest, back in March, when the school’s principal Nataliya Yebutushenko met with me, scheduling another week of summer camp was the last thing I wanted to do.