Summer is a great time for relaxation and adventure. At the request from the former pupils of orphanages of the Ternopil region, the Youth Club, "Successful Youth", which is operated by Orphans’ Future, organized a two-day hike to the Dniester River, in cooperation with the Ternopil charitable foundation "Warm Hearts".
This expedition involved a challenging 21 km. rafting trip on the river for two days, sleeping overnight in tents in the open air without access to electricity and the Internet. A drastic change for our young people who learned some necessary outdoor survival skills such as organizing their own fireplace and cooking their meals over an open fire. The most difficult task, according to our keen young adventurers was to prepare the catamarans for safe rafting. In addition, the catamarans transported all the camping equipment and the main goal was not to lose any of it in the water. One team had the daunting experience of having to go back to retrieve sleeping bags that were in the river!!
During the two days of camping, the young people bathed in a cold spring but they were aided by the weather which was very hot and sunny. The water used for cooking presented another challenge since it had to be carried 500m. to the place of camp. Our young travellers decided that the best way to meet all the challenges was to divide into small teams and to delegate the responsibility for certain work to each team during the camp. One group was responsible to bring water and firewood, others laid out tents, and still others prepared meals. It was interesting to see the teamwork and how each one coped with difficulties for two days of camping and rafting.
Under the guidance of an instructor, the youth learnt the correct way to row a catamaran and control its direction. Also for the first time the guys had an opportunity to learn how to make a sauna using mainly natural materials, using nearby stones and their tent. Then some young people tested it using oak brooms.
Dniester Canyon, where the rafting adventure occurred, is on the list of the most popular tourist destinations in Ukraine. Its shores are covered with forests and bushes where no man has gone before. After rafting, the orphans visited and swam in Dzhurinsky waterfall, which height is 16m. and width 20m. The waterfall is located between the villages Nahiryany and Nyrkiv, Zalishchytsk district, Ternopil region. Nearby there is a historical relic - Chervonohorod castle dating back to the nineteenth century. Therefore, a sense of awe and great photos by our young travelers were guaranteed.
We would like to thank our constant benefactor, Mr. Igor Medynskyy, the Head of Department of Transport in Ternopil City Council, for help in organizing transport for these young graduates of orphanage boarding schools, giving the opportunity for high-quality educational and recreational activities.
Funds in the amount of $245 USD to organize rafting and camping on the Dnister River for 20 young people were received from the Global Fund for Children (USA) and the singing group "Voices of Angels." Many thanks to the Ternopil charity organization, "Warm Hearts" for helping to supply the catamarans and the Ukrainian Philanthropic Marketplace