Bob and Sharon are part of One Challenge’s IMT or International Ministries Team. They primarily work in camp ministry. Over the last year, despite numerous challenges, innovative camping ministries were effectively carried out in Central Asia and Ukraine at over 150 locations, along with expanding multi-level sports ministries.
As summer approaches, Bob and Sharon’s ministries are in full swing. “These days we have as much going on in winter as summer but summer means kids’ camps, hundreds’ of them,” Bob says.
Radooga Camp in Ukraine
Ukraine is home to over 100,000 orphans, one of the largest orphan populations in Europe. During the summer, orphans are sent to state-run camps with virtually no programs. “We would spend three months there doing nothing,” says Valera, an orphanage graduate. “No program, nothing; just one ball pierced, patched and house that we destroyed and kids whom we terrorized and hit.”
Radooga Camp partners with local churches to provide camp programs for orphans during these summer months, bringing together people who want to invest deeply into the lives of these kids and teens. Then after the summer, churches follow up and become church family to many of these orphans.
Here is a video featuring some highlights of Radooga camp:
An amazing development is happening in the Radooga camp and leadership training work in Kiev, Ukraine. For years Oleg and Lena Vasilevsky have worked to train leaders while running camps. Now the work is paying off. The government of Ukraine has asked for help developing English learning camps as part of a whole-country effort to teach English. “It’s a great honor to be asked and Oleg meets regularly with the top government officials to make this happen. In the first stage this effort puts carefully chosen youth leaders from 13 regions, using our model, in charge of developing camps through public schools,” Bob says. Please pray as this new development is a first in Ukraine.
Fine Arts Camp for Young Adults
Radooga Camp ministry is also seeing great success with JAMM schools, where young adults, almost all non-believers, come weekly for training in music, film, game development and English lessons“. They come to our facility in Kiev and are trained and mentored by Christian specialists. At the end of each session they put on a program to demonstrate what they have learned,” Bob says.
These kids are from the “up-and-out” part of society and they pay to go through our program. Government officials’ and business leaders’ kids are rich and often involved with drugs, sex, and other abusive behaviors. Their parents are happy to see them in our programs with supervision and a positive environment. And these programs help pay for our orphan camps and other ministries.
Pray with One Challenge
“God is good … all the time … and in spite of Satan’s attacks, God’s word is going out and young people are coming to Christ. We praise God for his hand of blessing!” Bob and Sharon say.
Camp ministry is very expansive and a lot of work goes into each camp. Here are the areas to pray for: facility management, staff hiring and management, message content and control, marketing, finances, equipment, events, government relations, communication with parents and churches, evaluation resulting in future planning — and more.
- Pray that the gospel is presented in a clear and practical way resulting in discipleship.
- Pray for all the children, teens, and young adults attending and working at the camps.
- Pray for protection, as camps seem to be an opportune time for the Enemy to attack.
One Challenge is an international mission sending agency empowering local church ministry in more than 100 countries around the world. One Challenge uses sports as a vehicle to create opportunities for sharing the gospel, planting churches, helping churches engage their communities, and developing disciple-making networks.