Спілка жінок Херсонщини

За мир, добробут та щасливе майбутнє наших дітей!

Open hearts: “Don’t visit boarding institutions – visit children!”

Having totally missed our younger and adult, obedient “magpies” and noisy “ruffians”, on 25 April we, the Union’s team together with volunteers, visited the boarders of Novokyivska Special Boarding School that is located in Kalanchak Region.

Having precise plan and schedule, we were supposed to come back in 2 – 3 hours, but stayed for almost the whole day… Why did that happen – read on!

If to be boring, we should confess: official activity of civil organizations is exactly regulated by Articles of Associations, strategic plan and such a notion as “project”. Projects are made up by the Union members, setting goal, target group, time schedule and budget. The same way was with our project of social coaching “Step by Step” – we visited children at boarding institutions almost every week within the whole year, communicated, played, worried, carried out profound psychological work and rehabilitation… And then this project was over, got transformed and gave an impulse to a new, more important stage of our activity – Program of the Corporate Coaching for teenagers and graduates of the boarding institutions.

But how we were lacking that communication, sincere hugs of children, their stories and confessions, their deep eyes and rational reasoning… We didn’t feel pity for them, treated them as equals, took their family stories, tried not to criticize their parents…

During Spring Women Conference of KWU in the end of March this year we vowed and declared to renew trips to children – crazy, interesting, and most important – open to everyone, who wants to present his/her talent, own skills, part of own heart to small and adult boarders of orphanages! We called this project “Open hearts” not in vain!

On 25 April we gathered an unusual team – the Union’s managers, psychologists – volunteers Tetiana Nemenko and Tetiana Shkoliar, volunteering coach Inna Mateychuk, our kinsfolk already craftswomen from “Sand Island” Valya Pulkanova and Anya Sukhoruchko, team FBI Style Agency Maryna Nugaieva, Ella Tyutlikova, Valentyna Brylina and we took volunteers – hairdressers – Svitlana Plys, Vira Zaitseva, young specialists of the training center “Furore” Maria Dogonova, Ganna Shtrykachova, awesome Mila Golovchenko from the Educational Center of Iryna Petrenko “Ideal Beauty”, hairstylist Alina Chusa.

We are good acquaintance with some girls, and saw the others for the first time, but there was no discomfort felt, I have warned at once: today you are going to have an unforgettable day, so much hugs and compliments you are going to receive!) And it really did; I suppose everyone had a very rewarding experience about our crazy team!)

We entered the boarding institution as a hurricane. In the blink of an eye, our psychologists started to get into a character to work with younger children. At once, Tetyana Nemenko became a colorful girl Joyfulness, and a serious and always reserved Tetiana Shkoliar – a Super Girl! Even we didn’t expect such a transformation!

In the bulk for the elder children a creative workshop started to operate – having got together, with Valya, Anya and Liuba’s caring and thoughtful administration the children started to create bright and positive magnets smiles. How much emotions, colors and boasting! “Look, look at mine!”, “Good, isn’t it?”, “Sign it, please, I’ll present one to Mom!”

Meanwhile, Inna Mateychuk started a conversation – training with teachers on such important topics for women as how is it in a contemporary rhythm of life, on complicated weekdays to be able to stop and listen to inner emotions, how to take yourself the way you are, to be able to dream and stay yourself! After hearty and in a feminine way sincere talk, teachers went out smiling, courageous and winged! You won’t believe: they even started to change haircuts immediately!)

In the meantime, we arranged a mini-hairdresser’s in one of the classrooms: fans, curling tongs, combs, hairsprays, mousses, hairpins. And services that were provided by that hairdresser’s would fit any taste: there were casual and holiday haircuts and hairdos for girls, men cuts, fringes and hair tips straightening. No wonder, the children’s queue was endless! You bet! The hairdressers paid attention to everyone, listened to and made wishes of every child come true. Just imagine what it means for every child to feel as a VIP customer at the elite salon, when you are listened to and what’s most important – you are heard. Curls – so be it, plaits in a crown – here you are! Cuts for boys – please, join the queue!) Know what? We couldn’t recognize some of them after the transformation: sparkling eyes, beaming smiles! The hairdressers have been working tirelessly for the whole 4(!) hours. Finally, all volunteers were helping to make braids and joking that Lilia Semenivna would have to announce a disco-party at the boarding school for such a beauty not to disappear in vain!)

On the way back the hairdressers confessed that they hadn’t expected such a boom and they were having a terrible backache… Girls, we would like to thank you for our children! For the fairy tale that came true!

There happened such kind of a story: Alinka noticed that a small girl Liuba with white hair was upset for the unknown reason and wasn’t actually enjoying the entertainment in the bulk for the youngsters. She suggested to join our mini-hairdresser’s and “send your blue mood away with a good hairdo! Would you like to?” Her look brightened up. “I would like to!” – said Liubushka. While she was waiting for her turn, the girl got upset again. I came to her: “Liubochka, what has happened? Why are you sad again?” She looked up at me with her blue eyes: “I have sore lips – they became weatherbeaten” – Let’s cover it with balm – you’ll feel much better, - said I with a surreptitious wink. – Let’s go!” Liubasya smiled and followed me. She got her finger ready obediently and covered her lips in front of the mirror – and it was just amazing! She started smiling! “Do you happen to know that there is a girl who came with us and her name is also Liuba! And her hair is just like yours! Do you want to get acquainted with her?” – And the ice finally thawed in her eyes! Liuba was shining brightly! They got acquainted and know what? They even looked alike! A small miracle, isn’t it?

“I have enjoyed this day so much!” – confessed Vanya, seeing us off to the bus – “we were drawing, I was taken picture of, had my hair done! I am happy!”

Consequently, this day was worth it!

Of course, we are not magicians and cannot solve every problem with a spell wand, but every time we visit children, we present them care and love, leaving pieces of our hearts there…

We would like to thank Maryna Nugaieva and Ella Tiutlikova for the organization of presents for children! On behalf of all boarders of Novokyivka we would like to thank sponsors that provided juice, sweets, ampyxes, hair ties and hair slides for girls – Anna Ivashchenko; to photo studio Aquamarin Olha; special thanks to Ksenia Mazur, to girls-retailers from the market that presented hair ties for free – Inesa Vatulina, Natalia Kobets; to Mykhailo Danylchenko that presented music keyboard and children’s kitchen, to Vitalii Tselinko and Iulia Berkut!

Our secret is simple: presenting happiness to others, we become happier ourselves! Together we can make the world a better place!

Photo: Alina Mazurenko

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Юлія Майнер

Філолог за освітою та покликанням. Обожнює дітей і все, що з ними пов'язане!

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