Three MIWC-led Ukrainian youth music camps are scheduled to take place in Irpin, Ivankiv and Krasyatychi, Ukraine in June and July of 2019.
A team of mostly Ukrainian volunteers will lead these camps.
Irpin is an outer suburb of the Ukrainian capital city of Kyiv. This growing city has a very large refugee population, who have relocated from the war zone in southeastern Ukraine. Irpin is also home to one of the main Christian seminaries in the country, which was founded shortly after the fall of the Soviet Union.
The Irpin camp will be held on the grounds of a ministry complex that houses the Irpin Bible Church and a Christian Conference Center. The 2016 MIWC camp in Irpin attracted 40 students and almost 90 in 2017.
In 2018, 83 children participated in camp, with 40 of these children coming from unchurched families in the church neighborhood.
Ivankiv is about 75 miles northwest of Kyiv and only 40 miles south of the Chernobyl nuclear plant. The radiation fallout from the April 1986 tragedy there has had a very definite impact on the cities surrounding it, including increased rates of cancer, especially of the thyroid.
The substantial poverty rate and general poor health of the population are evident in Ivankiv, though the flora and fauna of the area are not as affected as communities to their north, closer to the nuclear plant site. A Ukrainian pastor and his family relocated to Ivankiv several years ago and began a tiny church plant. Their main work has been with the children of the area, as they have been greatly neglected. The church runs an after school and summer program at a local public health center. MIWC first teamed up with the pastor in summer 2016 to offer a music camp for the children in the community. More than 75 children flocked to that camp. In 2017, 130 children showed up at the camp's doors. The camp is highly evangelistic in nature as the children had little to no knowledge of God. In 2018, 94 children participated in the music camp in Ivankiv. The majority of these children were from unchurched families, and the local church is beginning to see significant strides as people are now visiting the church.
Krasyatychi could in many ways be called Ivankiv’s twin. It’s slightly north and west of Ivankiv and has identical issues in terms of poverty and sickness. In addition, as in Ivankiv, there is an astronomical rate of alcoholism and economic despair among the adult population. Children are overshadowed by the harsh realities of life. It will be MIWC's first time in this city.