On December 28 orphanage graduates of all ages from all over Vladimir region came together as one big family to celebrate Christmas and New Year. There were 120 grads present at the celebration. Among these were students from Vladimir educational institutions as well as institutions from around the region. Also present were Fund Nadezhda participants of Young Families, Young Mothers, Independent Living, and Family Center programs. Thanks to our sponsors, the young people had a great celebration and received wonderful gifts. All the older orphans were pleased and touched that the gifts turned out to be so nice, and included items that were useful, along with some treats.
“I’m so grateful to Fund Nadezhda for a great, fun New Year’s celebration. It was so cool, and most importantly, I saw kids from my orphanage that I hadn’t seen for a few years. That’s because they were students at a tech school in another city. At first I didn’t want to come because we were having a dance at the college at the same time. Then I decided to come and don’t regret it whatsoever. I was so glad to see old friends! And I don’t have enough good words to say about the food and gifts!”
Vitya P., Agrarian College in Novoaleksandrovo
The Life Skills program continues in 10 orphanages of the region. The sessions are conducted in different forms – stories, discussions, talks, games, trainings, field trips, introduction to new concepts and terms. Kids are usually very open and active in class. They like to discuss different problems with their instructors. As a result of the program orphans began asking more questions about their future housing, making plans on where to go after they leave the orphanage, and what career to choose. These sessions help the orphans to learn more about the world around them.
“I like our Life Skills program sessions. I learn a lot of useful things there. In one of the first sessions I tried to imagine myself in 5 years. It was very interesting to think about that.”
Artyom M., Melekhovo orphanage
“I always come to our Life Skills sessions. What do I like about them? They are very interesting, fun, and educational. We learn what we should do in different situations, how we can control our temper. I liked the topic “Family in My Life” the best”.
Roma M., Murom 2 orphanage
“I like our Life Skills program sessions. I learn a lot of new and useful things. I can talk to our instructor Tatyana about everything. I will continue attending the sessions because I enjoy them”.
Dennis K., Yuriev-Polsky orphanage
In February 2011 the Job Skills Program continued at the Vladimir Ministry Center. The second stage of the program is taught by the representative of “Personnel plus” recruiting agency. Each participant is individually interviewed. The interview consists of a professional skills and ambitions assessment, and psychological diagnostics. The purpose of the assessment is to discern the student’s gifts and personal characteristics. As a result each student will receive a personal profile that will include the description of his or her physiological portrait, abilities, personal potential, and challenges that may either help or hinder the success of the future job search and professional growth. According to the assessment results the educational sessions will be developed to aim at the improvement of professionally important characteristics of each student.
“In October 2010 I started attending job skill classes. From the very beginning I really liked everything I heard in class. We learned about very important things: how to conduct yourself at job interviews, how to interact with others, how to make good decisions, how to work in a team. I hope the things I have learned will help me in my future. Thank you for inviting me to be a part of the program.”
Vera M., Mstyora orphanage
Concord Visit to Lukhtonovo Orphanage
A group of 11 volunteers from Concord UMC in Pennsylvania came to lead a winter camp at Lukhtonovo orphanage. This group has been visiting Lukhtonovo regularly since the late 1990’s and is received at the orphanage not as guests, but as family.
The group had age-appropriate classes for all the orphans, including crafts, sports, puppet shows for younger orphans, and setting goals and cooking for older kids. The orphanage made an ice skating rink outside prior to the group’s arrival, and the group brought 21 pairs of used ice skates to donate to the orphanage. Kids of all ages and volunteers enjoyed spending time together outside in spite of the cold weather.
The martial arts coach put together a slide show of pictures from the fall trip to Hungary where, thanks to the donations of this group, 7 orphans participated in an international competition (many of whom took first place). The martial arts team also performed one number for the group.
Among many supplies brought and donated to the orphanage (crafts supplies, school supplies, games, etc.), the group brought a number of evening gowns for the older girls. This was a special and timely gift as the staff had only recently been trying to figure out what the 3 senior girls would wear to graduation.
As is tradition for this group, they treated staff and teachers to dinner in Vladimir and likewise had a special dinner in Vladimir and a time of sharing with graduating seniors.
Each time Concord comes to the Vladimir region, they always set aside a day to spend with those who used to live at Lukhtonovo but have since graduated. This year was no exception. The graduates and volunteers went bowling together, had lunch and interaction at the Fund Nadezhda Ministry Center, and went to a local café for dinner. Additionally, each graduate received a gift bag. It was an enjoyable reunion as Lukhtonovo graduates from all over the region came together.
Saying goodbye was hard as always, and was only made easier knowing of the Concord group’s commitment to return again as they have so many other times in the past.
“I was so happy to spend time with my new American friends! I came to Luhktanovo from Omoforovo orphanage in September. I didn’t know what to expect. But I really like it here. Everyone is so friendly and nice. The Americans had fun games for us in the gym and a lot of other interesting activities. They also brought skates and we all went skating together. I like skating very much. I am already looking forward to the next time they come here to Luhktanovo.”
Sasha Ts., 9th grade, Luhktanovo
Three of our 13 students were able to take part in “All Russia Ski Race”. Unfortunately, the local authorities provided us only with three participant numbers and uniforms although we had 13 potential participants. The other graduates were able to come and cheer for our skiers in spite of the bitter cold and wind.
Defender’s Day party
The girls congratulated the guys on this day and wished them to be defenders of those who need their strength and support. We invited guests from the Youth Department of Vladimir City Administration club “Patriot”. They did a presentation on the importance of being a defender of your land, the peace and happiness of your loved ones. After that all students participated in different funny games to see who of them was the smartest and strongest.
“We enjoyed the Defender’s Day party in the Ministry Center very much. It was very well organized, the celebration dinner was great – pizza! Serious contests were combined with fun ones and it was great!”
Valera I. and Vitya B.
Nuevo Reto Orphanage
Belaya Kholunitsa Orphanage