In late August, the Summer Camp project, a camp vacation in Austria for children from Ukraine implemented by the charitable organization ADRA Ukraine in cooperation with ADRA Austria, was completed. Since the beginning of July, five groups of a total of 147 vulnerable children aged 7 to 13 from Kherson, Donetsk, Luhansk, Kharkiv, and other regions had a chance to rest at the camp. These are children of internally displaced persons affected by the war, children from low-income, large, and single-parent-headed families, who were accompanied by 27 counselors assigned by ADRA Ukraine.
The Ukrainian children had a rest in such locations as Strobl, Sittersdorf, Bogenhofen, and Schwarzenberg. They took part in various activities, including swimming in lakes, hiking in the mountains, sports competitions, visiting museums and historical sites, etc.
Oksana Suhak, one of the volunteer camp facilitators, says: “When the full-scale invasion started, many children had faced significant challenges related to the ongoing hostilities, so now it is essential to give them a chance to restore their emotional state. Thanks to the excursions that were held in the camp, the children were delighted to see new beautiful places. The time at the camp was much needed for these children, since they received a lot of positive emotions.”
Volunteer facilitator Liudmyla Shpilchuk is convinced that “the camp helped the children understand many things that changed their lives. When they come home, they realize a lot and try to change for the better.”
The feedback from the parents of the young campers is also very positive. For example, Vlada’s mom and dad from Kharkiv say: “It was the first time our child traveled so far without parents. Thanks to the perfect organization, everything was comfortable and unforgettable. For the second day in a row, we have been hearing interesting stories about every day in the camp.”
The children, their parents, as well as the camp’s educators and mentors express their gratitude to ADRA Austria for the opportunity to give children a vacation in such a difficult time for Ukraine.