Camps for orphans need more team members

By June 18, 2009

International (MNN) — Global
needs more people to run summer camps for orphans in Ukraine, Moldova,
and India. It runs four camps in the
Ukraine, one in Moldova, one India, and two in Kenya's Kibera slums. In particular, two of the camps badly need
more team members.

"We desperately need people for
the third camp in Ukraine and for the one in Moldova," said Lars Dunberg, president
of Global Action. There are still
openings for other Ukraine trips as well. 

The trip to Moldova, Europe's
poorest country, will take place on July 12-25. The third Ukraine team will travel from July 22 to August 7.  Dunberg said that anyone can go. 

"The qualification is that you
know Jesus and you have long arms, because you're going to do a lot of hugging,"
he said. "These kids are starved for
love, and they will be at you like stamps, clinging to you for 10 days. And your job is to show the love of Jesus to
these kids."

About 12 people go on each team
member, and the oldest team member who ever went was 80. Another elderly team member goes every

"We have one man that goes over
to Ukraine every spring to help with getting this camp ready," Dunberg related. "He's 78 years old; he's been seven times. He could not preach, he could not sing, but
he knows every part of that sewage system in that camp, and he can fix it. And that is his passion. So anyone that has any gift can come and
operate and work and do what they do best."

At the camp, the kids enjoy
games, crafts, team sports, nature walks, daily devotions, singing, drama, and
bonfires. At the camp in Ukraine, the
kids also get to swim in the Black Sea. In
addition, they get three square meals a day — a rare treat for residents of
state-run orphanages. 

Many of the children have suffered

"One boy came last summer," Dunberg
said. "His mother had tried to throw him
out from the fourth-floor balcony to kill him. Prior to that, she had sold him for a bottle of vodka. The hatred and bitterness in these kids are
enormous, and we saw this boy's life just transformed as he learned that he was
forgiven by Jesus and that he had to forgive his mother."

A majority of the kids respond
to the Gospel message during camp. 

"We try not to run perfect
statistics, but we've found about 65 percent of these kids go home not just
with a Bible in their hand but with a friend in their heart," Dunberg

Local churches follow up with the
kids through the Sunday schools they run near the state-run orphanages. The program has made a huge impact in kids'

"We see a lot of the older kids
now coming out of orphanages being really transformed, wanting to come back and
work at the camp and so forth. It's been
a very, very good model," Dunberg said. He
asked for prayer for not only travel safety, but for wisdom for camp staff as
they minister to troubled campers.

"These kids come from very
difficult backgrounds into this loving community; sometimes they
don't even know what has hit them," he said. "So we pray that they will open their
hearts, and when they do, we see the transformation. Help us pray for the leadership of
these camps."

For just $23, you can sponsor one
day of camp for a child
. Global Action
also needs people to join the teams and help run the camps. 

"There is nothing more wonderful
than to invest in a child," Dunberg said. "And when you see a child that is so deprived of everything there is, investing
in their lives is wonderful for them. And it also does wonders for you."

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