Camp: Day 1 – Giving it our best shot

In the morning 30 campers assembled at the church office where we (the Americans) chatted with each of them individually in order to place them in the appropriate English classes according to their skill level.

After we grouped everyone, we bordered a bus for the hour-and-a-half journey to the camp where we will be for the next five days.

Once we settled into our rooms, we got to know the students through some icebreaker activities.

After lunch we had our first English class. David and Aijalon are leading the advanced group, Brandon, Austin, and Brian are working with intermediate student, and Megan, Bryson, and Gretchen are heading up the beginners. The main draw for the students is their desire to practice their English with native speakers. That is us. A special thanks to Courtney Swafford who did an amazing job helping prepare the curriculum for the week, especially the advanced class.

English lessons finished, we all assembled in the field for "sport" which involved a bunch of crazy relay races and contests involving soccer balls, water balloons, slip and slides, water guns and lots of running.

After dinner we had a spiritual component which was led by Pastor Max who is he pastor of Big City church. Max is a very forceful and engaging speaker, even through a translator. He explained that this spiritual part is what sets this camp apart from all other English camps. The theme for the week is "Sandcastles," showing how we must have our lives built on a solid foundation.

After Max was done we had an opening program where the camp and the American and Ukrainian teams were formally introduced.

After some more team bonding time, some retired for the night while other joined in some card games until lights out at midnight.

Please Pray:

  • For physical energy. The daily schedule is grueling with little chance to rest and some of the team did not sleep well last night.
  • For emotional energy. Many of our team are naturally introverts and the constant personal interactions can be draining. Pray that we will stay focused and energized. It has been very see how everyone has embraced their roles with enthusiasm.
  • For presence and work of the Holy Spirit with the team and students.
  • That we would truly help the students improve their English abilities.
  • That people would come to know Christ.