BCM Ukraine offers a variety of camps in different locations and different time frames (day camp or full-week). Camps for teens and children take place throughout the summer months, including among war victims and orphans. An exciting additional ministry outreach is camps for handicapped children, for whom programs and resources are very rare in the Ukraine. BCM missionaries Alexander and Sveta Tomnytsky, who have handicapped children themselves, help run these programs from their home base in Zhytomir. They are joined by BCM team members Corosten Anton and Katia Rozvodovsky. These “handicamps” are held in the beautiful setting of the Carpathian Mountains. Most campers attending are from unchurched families.
The Tomnytskys and the Rozvodovskys approach pastors throughout the Ukraine, presenting the opportunity to attend camp for handicapped children within their congregations. This strategy has worked very well in providing ongoing discipleship for campers. Alexander Tomnytsky explains, “We share the Good News with campers, spend time with them at camp. Then they go home, and it is the local church’s responsibility to do follow-up work. We are also planning a training camp with pastors to prepare them for working with handicapped.”
Many of the regular and handicamp programs use rented facility. BCM Ukraine currently has land for a permanent camp facility, but the recent crisis has prevented development of the new camp property. Please pray for a new vision for the camping ministry, especially in regards to facilities.
Birthed from the handicamp ministry has been another active and growing outreach through BCM missionary Nellie Semenov. Nellie lives in a remote village. Because of current needs of her own handicapped son, she can’t currently attend camps or travel for ministry. However, internet access has allowed her to establish an interactive blog (www.gracegleeful.blogspot.nl), through which she is able to share the gospel and assist many in their spiritual problems.
Originally Published in BCM World March 2016 as part of BCM Ukraine: Speaking Unchanging Truth to an Ever-Changing Nation