Eleven students from Melitopol orphanage, four children from Zaporozhye Children‚Äôs Home and two from a large family arrived to Crimea in the morning of March 23rd. Sevastopol welcomed us with a pouring rain, snow, and wind. But it turned out that our little travelers are not afraid of bad weather! In spite of the nasty conditions, they were all cheerful and excited. It seemed that they did not pay any attention to the weather at all.
Wrapped into our raincoats, we were off to visit the ancient town of Chersonese. As soon as we went down to the seacoast, we got a wonderful view of the raging sea! Later on, after a hard way along the sea line, we finally found ourselves looking at the remains of the ancient town. Then we went to a big church. It was St. Vladimir‚Äôs Cathedral built in the Byzantium style, striking with its beauty and magnificence.
Only in the evening we got to our accommodation at the Lesotel in Baydarskaya valley where we were welcomed by its hospitable owners, Lena and Timur. This is not the first time when these truly lovely and wonderful people open their hearts and the doors of their hotel to our children and the accompanying adults.
First of all, tired and soaked to the skin, we made ourselves comfortable in our rooms. And then our hosts got us a delicious dinner followed with flavored herbal tea. Later at night we had a welcoming party.
Next day in the morning we were up at 7 a.m. Our schedule included morning exercises, snow removal, breakfast, and a trip to the seaside. First our travelers walked eight kilometers to reach the Baydarsky Gates, where we enjoyed the breathtaking view on the sea from the height. Then we went into the Foros Church, constructed in 1892 on a bold cliff, the Red Rock. The construction is situated at the height of 412 meters above the sea level. All the children were hungry as bears, so we had a stop with lunch. While we got our magic tablecloth ready, our volunteer Oleg announced a tug-of-war contest.
Though, some of the team members preferred not to participate in the contest, but to play clowns. Those who were making too much trouble got punished and had to do push ups with their bag packs (not only boys, but girls as well).
After some time to relax and build up our strength, our team started going down a very long serpentine road. When we arrived to Foros, it was already dark, but no one was scared or tired. We reached our target, and the sea was at our feet. All the way back ‚Äúhome‚ÄĚ we were singing songs and telling rhymes!
Our third day was dedicated to Chernorechensky Canyon. This is one of the most amazing sites of the beautiful Crimea. But before our final destination, we decided to make a small amendment to our program. We visited a mysterious closed facility striking due to its huge size. This was Object 221 or the Reserve Control Station of the USSR Black Sea Fleet built at the times of the Cold War.
In the morning of our last day, we had breakfast, packed our things and got on our way back home. These four days brought a lot of fun and unforgettable impressions to all the children. This experience was also good for their health. When we all said goodbye in Melitopol, some of the volunteers could not keep a tear running from their eyes.
It is very important for children to go on such trips. They do not require a lot of money, so each of you is able to support such initiatives: either with a donation (the cost of such four-day trip for a boy or a girl from an orphanage institution is approximately UAH 190 or approximately 24 US dollars; you can make a donation this way) or with food products needed in such trips. You can call +38 099 458 79 81 and ask any questions you may have.
We would like to once again thank our friends Elena and Timur for their hospitality. And also to Anna Shevchuk from Melitopol and Roman from Zaporozhye who made this trip possible. And, of course, many thanks to the ‚Äútour guides‚ÄĚ Oleg Mikhaylov and Aleksey Skakun.