Friday, August 05, 2011

Kid's Camp 2011

From 1-4 August we were at Kid's Camp with the team from Finland. The camp was held in the Bird Sanctuary/Wetlands of Bardača: here is a picture of one of the stunning sunsets and a beautiful flock of birds (and if you look carefully a ball and some campers playing in the foreground!).
There were 78 of us altogether: the team of 26 from Finland, 2 foreign (me and Eliska) and 8 local volunteers and 40 Bosnian children mostly from our Sponsorship project (the sponsored children and their siblings). The age ranged from 6 to 13 (the two kids under 8 came with their moms). We had the camp at the Natural Mathematics Faculty's facilities for fieldwork... so only the Finns were actually in tents - the rest of us got to be inside in dormitories or rooms.

Here are the Bosnian kids and the Finns thanking one of the many sponsors for their donations for the camp (Ljilja worked really hard on getting donations for the camp!!). They are standing in front of our "meeting tent" which is where we had the morning and afternoon meetings with the kids.
One of the fun things with this group of Finns is that it includes Kesia and Noomi who were here for almost 6 years with their parents, Miika and Mirjam (and sisters Jiska and Dina) and left last year to go back to Finland. Beside the fact that it is great to see them again, they can speak the local language fluently, so they were a BIG help with translation! Here are Kesia, Ljilja and Noomi:
We each had a group of children to look after and my task was made easier because unfortunately two of my girls didn't make it as they got sick. So I only had Snjezana (in the middle) and Jasmina (right) in my group. Andjela on the left was in my dorm along with 3 other girls and two more volunteers. I meant to get a group picture of us, but it didn't happen... We had a great time in our room, even having a pyjama party (with all the girls on the camp) on the last night... will have to post pics from that separately as I didn't have my camera with me! 
So, what did we do with the kids for four days? Besides having a lot of games and competitions there was lots of other fun stuff that the Finnish team organised for us... I didn't get a picture of the two trampolines - but during free time there was always a long line of kids waiting for their turn!

Here is Ljilja with little Snjeza and the "camp flag" which we made on the first day:
Here we are singing (I am leading with Rami) at the "campfire" one evening - I think this is them singing the part of the song which goes:  "say to the Lord I love you" (in Serbian of course) and making a heart sign...
Here we are singing "if I were an elephant" from the song "thank-you Lord for making me me":
We had lots of dramas: here Neven and I are acting out the Bible story of the "Good Samaritan" who helped his neighbour - I am a busy politician who has no time for the injured man...
...while Ljilja was the "Samaritan" (in our story a Roma "Gypsy") who actually stopped to help him:
We learnt a lot of new things - including how to take care of our teeth: Here is Noomi helping Katja Maaria to tell the children how to make sure they have strong and healthy teeth.
Sword fighting with BIG foam swords was a big favourite with the boys:
The food was FANTASTIC! Well done to Ankica (one of the moms who was the one responsible for the cooking) and others in the kitchen! Here is Neven with his crew eating lunch:
We also had workshops each afternoon: here is the handcraft workshop showing some of their stuff:
And the dance workshop showing us how it is done:
And last but not least... we had a fashion creation show on the last night. Competing against two of the Finns (sorry I don't have a picture!), Drazen and Ljilja had to put together a creation with what they could find: Here is what they came up with: :-)
This is just a taste of all that happened at camp - we had a phenomenal time: thanks to all who made it all happen!!!

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