The organisation for young Ukrainians, their families and friends living in Denmark, Lastivka have caused that 44 Ukrainian children who have lost a father in the war in eastern Ukraine, have been able to come on holiday in Denmark.
The children come from all parts of Ukraine and are aged 8-14 years. 30 of them are based at the Nature Center Harrild Heath between Brande and Ikast and the rest in the FDF House in Skarpsalling by Loegstoer. We have visited the summer camp at Brande and arrived just as the children came back from a great day in Lalandia in Billund. A long day in the water park made them hungry, so the kids rushed to the dining room, where the food was ready for them.
After another day of good experiences the children come back to the camp. Photo: Joergen Deleuran.
Inside, volunteers had been busy cooking for the many children who stood in line to get filled plates before they sat down at the tables.
The food is served. Photo: Joergen Deleuran.
The children eat with good appetite. Photo: Joergen Deleuran
On the same occasion was celebrated that one of the boys, Anatoli, had birthday – 9 years old. There was therefore arranged two large gingerbread men, so there was enough for all the children. In addition, the volunteers had been in a toy store, so Anatoli also got a birthday present.
Maria Padovska, president of Lastivka Ikast, brings a birthday cake to the table in front of the boy. Photo: Joergen Deleuran.
Anatoli also got a birthday present. Photo: Joergen Deleuran.
When the eating was over, and Maria Padovska were able to leave the kids for a while, we had a talk with her.
How have you managed to get done all the formalities with documents and gather the kids?
– The children come from 9 regions of Ukraine. We've got great help from the organization Help Heroes' Children in Ukraine. They have made sure that all the paperwork was made and that the children had health insurance and so on. They also gathered the children in Lviv in western Ukraine.
How much did the journey to Denmark cost, and who paid?
– We sought quotations from different bus companies and the cheapest wonted 92 euro cent per kilometer, so those we selected. Many have contributed money, especially here from the Brande / Ikast area. Lions Club, Y-Mens Club, various textile companies and businesses and many individuals. The municipality has also helped us and the associations Preserve Ukraine and Support Ukraine has also helped to ensure that the summer camp could become a reality.
Now that the kids have had dinner, what shall happen then?
– The children do not live in the camp, we only use it as a base during the day. They stay in the homes of 12-13 Ukrainian and Danish-Ukrainian families. The children need the presence and the security that a family can give them, so now they are picked up and will spend the evening and night in these families.
So the presence and security in the family and good experiences, will help the children to go on with the life after the loss of their fathers?
– Yes, good experiences too are important. They have been in Faarup Summerland, in Givskud Zoo, we have had a farming day where they visited both a chicken farm and a mink farm. We have brought them to the beach at Vejle Fjord and on a trip to Bork Viking Harbour. They shall also go on a trip to Vejrs Beach, so they can experience the North Sea. We bought kites for all of them, so it will be funny. They shall also go on treasure hunting here in the area and at the penultimate day all the children from Skarpsalling are coming to here. There will be common meals with the children and their host families. Friday we will take all the kids to Legoland, which will be the last trip during their stay. On Friday evening the trip back home to Ukraine will start.
The children have been picked up, the volunteers are on their way home after another day of action for the kids, and we also say goodbye. But before we go, we take a look at the the summer camp's surroundings. Nature Center Harrild Heath is located in a scenic area that probably can help to provide a little peace to the mind.
Nature Center Harrild Heath. Photo: Joergen Deleuran.
Along the summer camp flows the Holtum Stream. Photo: Joergen Deleuran.
A view of a part of Harrild Heath. Photo: Joergen Deleuran.
How it all began, read here – and the continuation you will find here.