Sorry to be so late in posting the blog, but it was a late night. After the concert we were invited for dinner at the Orphanage and there was a lot of visiting afterward. When we got home it was well past midnight and we ended up visiting until after 2 AM.
More progress was made on the Poultry Barn. Soffit and fascia, doors and vent fans …
as well as insulation and vapour barrier.
Another awesome project is our mountain bike initiative. We brought 15 mountain bikes with us as well as spare parts and tools. Dan trained 3 of the children as well as the coach on how to assemble, adjust and maintain the bikes. The boys were very excited to learn these skills and can’t wait to get out for a ride! We also brought 15 sleeping bags and 15 sleeping mats so the children that stay in the summer can go on bicycle excursions.
Of course the highlight of the day (maybe the week) was the concert that the children put on for us! They work so hard and put on a great show for us. It is amazing to see how the children have really come out of their shells over the past few years and how much they love to perform for the Canadians.
The rest of children all seem to really enjoy the show and interacting with their visitors. The girl in the middle is Masha, one of our awesome interpreters!
After the concert there were many presentations including the bikes and camping gear.
Dave presented Vitalli with the keys to Poultry Barn along with a rubber chicken!
Stephen’s group of students prepared a video, that went along with a song that they wrote about what a loving and caring environment the orphanage is for them to live in, compared to their home life (if they have one). The video was very moving as it began by showing children leaving, or being kicked out of their homes, and ultimately making their way to their new family at the orphanage. It was very creative and even started in black & white and ended in colour once they arrived at the orphanage.
After the video, Stephen presented the Yearbooks to the children. They rarely have pictures of themselves, never mind a yearbook with all of their friends as well. It was quite a process to create with the pictures being taken in Belarus and e-mailed to Canada. Kristi Peterson, a teacher in Smiths Falls, and two of her students, Jodi Foster and Emily Beke volunteered to put it together and Photovisions School Photography printed and sponsored the yearbooks. To say they were a hit would be putting in mildly! The children all sat quietly and looked through the books from cover to cover.
What great kids, what a great night!