I have been given the opportunity to volunteer in Ukraine this summer to help put on a one week summer camp for children in a refugee center. Their families were forced out of their homes during the last two years due to war. Their families ended up in Kiev, Ukraine where they are trying to find jobs and permanent housing. There are approximately 80 children under the age of twelve. The team I am traveling with will be targeting this age group of children but plan to have games and activities for the older teenagers in the afternoon, mostly in the form of games.
During the last three years, most of the information American's have heard about Ukraine is the war with Russian separatists and annexation of the Crimea. This turmoil has created a great need in Ukraine for kindness and compassion and I have accepted the call the serve the Ukrainian people this summer at the end of July. We will be assisting a refugee center being run by the Ukrainian Orthodox Church and some other western, Non-Government Organizations. Others teams will be traveling to Kiev this year as well, one providing mental health services and training, and a second providing medical and dental assistance.
The non-profit organization I am volunteering for does not cover any of my expenses. If you would be interested in assisting me with a donation to the non-profit to help cover the expenses, I would greatly appreciate it. Please contact me if you have any questions.
Tell me about something you like and why. It may be very hard to pick one item that you like so you may use combinations. For example, cake and ice cream, swimming and diving, playing video games and eating junk food, going to the movies and the arcade, hanging out with friends.
I like ice cream and cake, something like the picture on the left. I also like adventure though, and I like adventures more so I'm going to write about adventures.
I like adventures because they usually take me to places I have not been to before, they introduce me to experiences that I have not encountered before and they make me do something or complete something that I would not have done if I had not been on the adventure. For example, my trip to Florida to swim with manatee.
I have been snorkeling before, many times in many different places and continents. I had usually gone snorkeling in places where the water was clear and deep. The water where the manatee live is shallow and murky. I was a little confused at first because I could see so little underwater. I could only see about 8 feet in front of me and made figuring out where I was a little difficult. I was strange to have to pull my head out of the water in order to get my bearing, but this was an adventure that I would gladly repeat again, murky water included.
There are lots of other likes I have, what is one of yours and why?
I have so many favorite animals that it is hard for me to decide. One of my favorites now is the giraffe. I was able to feed this on just a few days ago. We were standing on a platform about 4 feet off the ground when she came along. We feed her leaves of romaine lettuce which she grasped with her 16 inch long tongue. All giraffes have a prehensile tongue. Just like a monkey has a prehensile tail that it can use to grasp branches and hold on, she is able to use her tongue to grasp food and pull it into her mouth. She stands about 16 feet tall and her neck is a little more than 6 feet long. She has 7 bones in her neck, just like we do, but the smallest bone is about the height of a medium book. She eats about 100 pounds of vegetation each day and just had a baby about 4 months ago. Her hair on her body is more rough and course that the hair on a horse and she is very muscular. She has a four chambered stomach and is in the same family of animals as the cow. She is an incredible and amazing animal.
What is your favorite animal and why. If you have interacted with one tell us about it.
We went snorkeling Tuesday. It was fresh water and the temperature was about 72 degrees. We were swimming with the large marine mammals. They moved slowly enough that we could easily keep up with them. We found a more with her baby in an area near houses with many boats moving slowly by.
Later on Tuesday we went snorkeling in a river created by several fresh water spring. This spring produces more that 300 million gallons of water a day and sometimes as much as 400 million. Any more guesses? If you think you know what state I'm in please try to locate the city or area. And please include reasons for you guesses.
Sunday, my students and I boarded a plane from Los Angeles and flew to Phoenix, Arizona. We changed planes and flew about 1,700 miles to place where there is a beach. The students will be studying marine plants and animals, they will be conducting experiments, and will be learning to snorkel. You job today is to use Google maps and other resources to name the possible locations where I may be. Please post a list of your educated guesses with reasons for each place on the list.