Ukraine Update

Dobriy dehn (good day) YMCA Calgary and friends,

Sorry for the delay in getting my first blog posted, these first few weeks have been a whirlwind of meetings, presentations, getting oriented and set up, planting potato fields and making varenyky…you know, the usual.

I spent my first few days in Lutsk with our friends from YMCA Volyn, which reminded me of how lucky I am to be in this country where I have always felt enveloped in caring and warmth. I spent some time at Ivanna’s house in Verbaiv, a small village outside of Lutsk where you walk down dirt roads and see people riding on old bicycles, others sitting outside small houses chatting and trading goods, little churches with golden roofs perched on the hillside, storks swooping down from enormous nests, Ladas racing down the road at mach speed, and people working in their fields from morning until night. It is also the only place where I have been herded off the road by a pack of cows on my morning run. I suppose (quadri) pedestrians have the right of way in Ukraine. Before leaving Lutsk I had the opportunity to attend a meeting of volunteers of YMCA Volyn to plan the upcoming camp at Svityaz – it seems like a great program and I’m looking forward to seeing how it has developed since my last visit there in 2009.

Written by Analu Lobos; Intern to Ukraine