Saturday, June 25, 2011

Update from Kyiv

From visiting the temple site to participating in Humanitarian project closings, we seem to be quite occupied here in Kyiv. We have been working with the Ukraine National Public Affairs Council and the Regional Speacilists to put together a plan for next year. Long range planning is relatively new to most of the people we work with, and it has been fun to help them see a vision for the future.

This lovely lady with the hat works with young children that have medical problems. She and her family do "performances" three times a week to the children and their parents. They were asked by the local adiminstration to take these childern from various hospitals and build up their outlook on life. Many will have struggles throughout their life, so instilling a little joy and making them smile is a tremendous accomplishment. They are to be commended for thier work, and their dedication.

We are planning to spend a few days in the Crimea covering Humanitarian Project closings and meeting with leaders to help them in their plans for the upcoming year. When we leave, we hope to have an approved plan in place for them to execute next year. One of the events will be two Helping Hands Days, one in the spring in April and the other in the fall. Every member is encouraged to join in on service projects during those days. The last one, and first one for that matter, was on 2 April. It was a tremendous success. There were many uplifting stories and a common desire to do these on regular basis. It so happens that it fell right in line with the day of service talks of General Conference.

We did spend 4 days in Chernivtsi, a city about the size of Ogden in teh southwestern part of Ukraine. (this is the 15 hour over-night train ride each way). We were able to spend time with Branch members and also participated in a Humanitarian project for wheelchair repairs.

We think there may be a couple designated to replace us. If that is the case, we will be able to determine our departure date. Theya re still awaiting their call, so things can change easily.

Bye for now.

Tom and Shauna

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