Ukraine Day Camp Ministry
The day camp ministry in Hutori was started when we sent our first short-term missions team in July 1997. The team consisted of Jeani Swenson, Janice Hanson, Chuck and Sharon Linn, Betty Syverson, and Doris Murray. All curriculum, craft supplies, music, game, and snack supplies were either taken over or shipped in advance by container to provide for all of the needs of the day camp ministry. It was a wonderful experience as the team stayed in host homes and worked with translators for the first time. The team served over 75 children ages 3 – 14 the first year, conducted a youth meeting, a women’s meeting, a men’s meeting, and a final day camp public meeting. The team met with local governmental and school officials in the city hall to explain the purpose of our visit to their community and to share ideas about the future. We were allowed to use the school playground, or stadium as they call it, for our game area.
We have continued to send teams to Hutori every summer since 1997 to conduct the day camps and encourage the Hutori church in its faith in the Lord. The day camps have served from 75 up to 278 children in Hutori. In 2002 we sponsored day camps in other communities as well for 700 children. This was a big stretch for our Fosston congregation. We continue to provide supplies for 300 children annually to be used in Hutori, and for other shadowed (non-churched) villages in the area. In 2007 school supplies of crayons, markers, and glue were provided for over 300 children in a local orphanage as well.