MINISTRY OF MERCY

January 30, 2024

From December 22 to January 18, the staff and volunteers of the «Success» Center worked with people from socially vulnerable categories. They shared the good news of the birth of Jesus Christ and distributed material assistance.

The teenagers who volunteer at our center helped us pack humanitarian aid packages containing: cereals, canned food, cookies, etc.

From December 26 to 29, we visited families of internally displaced persons in 4 villages of Ternopil region: Myshkovychi, Velyka Berezovytsia, Ostriv and Petryky. People who have come from the eastern and southern regions of Ukraine, where the fighting is ongoing, temporarily live there. People shared their stories and concerns with us. The story of Mrs Оlena:

Olena Mykolayivna is 63 years old. She and her husband (a group 2 disabled person) came from Donetsk region. They no longer have a home. Now they live in the Catechetical Center of St. Aristarchus Michael Church and they have no idea what will happen next. People who have lived in one place all their lives now, at the age of retirement, have to start from scratch. It’s hard.

As we talked to people, we shared the good news of Jesus Christ. He is our hope and salvation. During this time, we distributed about 60 humanitarian aid packages.

In addition, from December 26 to 29, in the evenings, we made targeted deliveries to IDPs and low-income families. In total, we delivered about 40 packages. We caroled, shared the Word of God and prayed together.

On December 29, our team visited the NGO Center for Assistance to Children with Down Syndrome “Babiko”, where they work with children with special needs. We distributed 60 packages of humanitarian aid to their families. The parents were very grateful, it was a great support for them.

In the evening, on the same day, we went to the train station in Ternopil. This is the place where the largest number of homeless people gather in winter, because they can warm themselves in the premises of the station. One of our volunteers preached to them that God did not promise us an easy life. But He promised to always be with us and gave us salvation through the resurrection of His only Son. He called them to come to the Living God who can change them once and for all.

We have prepared 75 sets of different types of canned food for them, which can be consumed without cooking. This is especially valuable in winter, as it is much easier to find food in summer.

On January 17, we visited the NGO “Unity of Generations,” whose members are mostly lonely elderly people. We preached to them that Jesus understands us and knows what we are going through, because He was born under occupation and His life was not easy. We prayed together for peace in Ukraine. We distributed 90 packages of food to them. Here are some stories of their hard lives:

Ms. Bohdana overcame cancer and had 23 chemotherapies. Now she is alone. She takes care of her mother, who cannot get up and cannot take care of herself. She attends weekly meetings of the NGO “United Generations” because it is the only opportunity to leave the house and get a little distraction.

Ivanna is a veteran of the Second World War. She has Parkinson’s disease. Her nephew (computer addict) lives with her. She suffers from poor treatment, disrespect, and lack of understanding from her family. However, Ms. Ivanna is a very intelligent, educated woman.

On January 18, 8 packages of humanitarian aid were delivered to the employees of the NGO Bebiko. Because their dedication and service to children is extremely important.

In total, from December 22 to January 18, thanks to the humanitarian support of Orphan’s Promise and Operation Blessing, we distributed 260 food packages.

On January 19-20, the «Success» Center hosted a seminar for fathers entitled “7 Secrets of Successful Fatherhood”. The main speaker, Adrian Bukovynsky, encouraged fathers to be active participants in their children’s lives. The men shared their experiences with each other: parenting methods, family values, the subtleties of communicating with children and spending fun time together.

So while our students were on vacation, we took care of those who needed it most. And, together with the fathers, we built strategies for raising children in love and mutual understanding.

Christmas time at the «Success» Center

December 26, 2023

December at the Success Center is filled with joy and warmth. This is the time when the whole world celebrates the most significant event of humanity – the birth of Jesus Christ.

On December 7-8, our employees and volunteers attended the Global Leadership Summit. 11 speakers talked for 2 days about how to be a good leader. It was a great opportunity for us to enrich our knowledge to become even more effective.

On the eve of Christmas, from December 18 to 21, we held a festive program attended by 230 of our students, aged 5 to 18. We told the children that despite the bright decorations and fun, the true value of Christmas is the birth of Jesus, the savior of all people.

The children recalled the story of Christmas by answering simple questions. They performed skits, in one of which angels came down to earth and tried to find people who had not yet forgotten what Christmas really is. They sang Christmas songs, the most profound and touching one was “Silent Night”. They danced, recited poems and shared their thoughts about Christmas:

“On Christmas we celebrate Jesus’ birthday” – Daniel, 6 years old.

“It’s a holiday when the whole family gathers at the table around one big event. When everyone puts aside their business and celebrates.” – Diana, 14 years old.

“Gifts add special warm memories to Christmas. The best thing I received was a table lamp with a flower on it.” – Lyuda, 13 years old.

At the end of the meeting, the children received sweets.

During these holidays, humanitarian aid packages were a great joy for our students. We have children whose families have been affected by the war. From December 18 to 22, we distributed 145 food packages.

On December 22, 42 children attended the Superbook Christmas meeting. We watched the “Journey to Christmas” cartoon series, in which the main characters Chris and Joy, together with Robik, traveled back to the time of Jesus’ birth and witnessed the most significant events. After that, the children received an assignment on a piece of paper where they had to connect the screenshot of the previously watched episode with its title. In the end, we all prayed together for Ukraine.

From December 23, we started winter holidays for children. During this time, the Center’s staff and volunteers will work with people from socially vulnerable categories. We will tell them the good news of the birth of Jesus Christ and distribute material aid. Education at the “Success” Center will resume on January 15.

Thank you, dear partners, for supporting us this year!

Celebrating Thanksgiving at the Success Center

November 24, 2023

   On November 22-23, classes at the Success Center were held in an interesting way. Instead of ordinary English lessons, each class celebrated Thanksgiving. It was a special time for our students, because in Ukraine they know almost nothing about this holiday.

   Children brought sweets with them, shared it with their classmates and chatted. And the teachers talked about how Thanksgiving is celebrated in America, about the meaning of the holiday and its history.

    For the younger children aged 5-9, fun games were held, in one of which they collected paper turkeys scattered around the room. They also sang the song “Happy Thanksgiving Day” and shared what they imagined Thanksgiving is like. One boy was sure that it is a holiday where they eat sushi.

    Older students aged 10-17 listened to a story about how the first pilgrims arrived to America. Then they took part in a Kahoot quiz answering questions on the topic. The children were impressed by the story of these people, the difficulties they faced, and their loyalty and gratitude to God.

    At the end of the meeting, our students together with their teachers prayed and thanked God:

“I thank God for every day that I live with my family and friends. Also, thank You for what You do for us and our country.” – Daria

“I am grateful to God for my life, for my good parents and friends. For my education and the opportunity to attend the Success Center.” – Kamila

“I thank God for giving me the opportunity to play volleyball for the Ternopil national team.” – Oleh

“I am grateful to God for living in a free country” – Dima

“I thank God for forgiving all my sins and motivating me to live.” – Yevhen

“Thank you for finally being healthy” – Antonina

“I thank God for the fact that this year the lights are not turned off and I can watch a movie in the evening and relax.” – Nadia

“I thank God that I have found my best friends” – Khrystia

“Thank you for my family and friends. For the fact that I started developing in confectionery. For the trip to Lviv with my friends and the good emotions.” – Lila

“I am grateful that God gives me good people in my life. For changing me.” – Violetta

“I am grateful for the opportunity to develop. That I can use my talents” – Sofia

“Thank You for Jesus, who saved us from sin” – Marichka

“Thank You for my parents” – Danylo

“Thank God for our defenders” – Vika

“I thank God for my life, for my family, for my friends.” – Svitlana

 A new season of Superbook meetings has begun! 

 October 27, 2023

Education at the Success Center continues. Students actively attend classes: they learn new English topics, communicate with teachers, and form strong friendships.

For 6 years in a row, one of the programs we have been holding is the «Superbook» meetings. They are scheduled once a month and are very special for the children. This is something that unites all students, because here they are not divided by age groups and can communicate with each other in a pleasant atmosphere.

On September 29, our Center hosted the opening of the new «Superbook» 2023-2024 meeting season. It was attended by 56 children aged 8 to 15. We welcomed new participants and made an introduction to the 9 lessons that we will conduct during the school year.

Also, at the beginning, we encouraged students to share their impressions of previous years with the «Superbook» and recall what we had already learned. It was nice to see that the children remembered the main topics we covered, and some of them could even recite super-verses from memory.

After the snack, everyone was divided into teams and played the game “Empires”, where the task was to solve someone’s “word” and not to guess yours.

“My favorite thing about Superbook is the games. It’s always so much fun. This time our team won. We guessed the word “stars” and won everyone,” says Marichka.

Then everyone sat comfortably on the floor and watched the new episode «Solomon’s Temple». Some of the children learned about Solomon’s reign for the first time and were impressed by his personality. The children answered questions about the cartoon and shared their discoveries.

“I like Solomon because he is kind to people and loves God. I will also love God like Solomon,” says Anya.

At the end of the meeting, we studied a super verse in our groups: “For the LORD gives wisdom; from his mouth comes knowledge and understanding!” – Proverbs 2:6. We all prayed together. Some children wanted to say a prayer of repentance.

Thank you, dear partners, for sharing the ministry to children with us! Pray for our students that the seeds we sow will sprout and bear incredible fruit!

Opening of the new school year at the Center “Success”

September 14, 2023

September 2023 has come. Today is the birthday of our «Success» Center, we are 16 years old.

Russia has been waging an aggressive, brutal war on Ukrainian territory for 1 year and 8 months. These are hard times for Ukrainians. Our soldiers are dying at the front. But the worst thing is that Russian bombs, missiles and shells are killing civilians, including women and children.

A large number of Ukrainians left for other countries as refugees. Many residents from eastern Ukraine (the war zone) moved to the west, to our city Ternopil.

Throughout the war, the team of the «Success» Center continued to take care of orphans, children from low-income families, and children from families temporarily displaced from eastern Ukraine due to the war. We wrote to you about this in previous newsletters.

On September 4, we solemnly opened the new academic year. From September 2023 to June 2024, 230 children will be studying with us on a regular basis. There are more children who want to attend our Center. But we cannot accept everyone because we do not have enough space for learning and enough teachers.

Some students, together with the teachers, prepared a grand opening program to inspire and encourage everyone before the start of their studies.

Younger children (5-7 years old) recited poems and received well-deserved applause. Then the high school students greeted everyone who came to the Center for the first time with bright balloons and gifts.

Victoria Khlebnikova sang the song “Let’s start this new day,” calling for prayers for children on earth every day and asking for God’s protection and blessing for them.

The event ended with the solemn raising of the Ukrainian flag and a prayer for the children and for successful studies.

On the same day, children had their first lesson, where new students could get to know their teachers and classmates. Children shared their expectations of the classes and plans for the future.

We want our students and parents to become even closer friends and for Jesus Christ to be firmly established in their hearts. There are lots of plans for future events, especially for the teenagers. In addition to English lessons, we will organize meetings for them to help them prepare for independent living. We have good Bible-based educational programs and certified teachers for each program.

We pray that God will give us wisdom to pay special attention to each child in response to their needs, to be attentive and vigilant to what is expected of us.

Parents’ meetings were also held on August 28-29. Here, parents could get full information about studying at the “Success” Center, talk to teachers and hear about their children’s educational prospects.

Alina and Denys’ mother shared:

“We are very happy that the classes have started. This is the second year that the children have been attending the “Success” Center. They not only improved their knowledge of the English language, but also developed a desire to learn. They became obedient, attentive, and tolerant of each other.

Alina and Denys like the fact that they are developing in various ways here.

It is very valuable that children are taught financial literacy. Now they understand the value of money and how important it is to be able to manage it properly”.

The academic year has ended at the Christian Training Center “Success”

July 14, 2023

June at the “Success” Center was full of events, the main of which was the end of the academic year. Before going on summer vacation, students had the opportunity to take part in a talent show and visit the day-camp.

About 80 children of different ages took part in the talent show. We listened to a lot of music, looked at drawings, enjoyed dance show and reciting poems. Most of the performances were patriotic: about love for Ukraine, victory, peace. Most of all, everyone liked the performance of Marta Ivantsiv, 8 years old – gymnastics to the song “I haven’t seen my mother for so long”. And also the poem “Flag” in a touching performance by Iryna Baran, 13 years old.

From June 5 to 8 the Success Center hosted children’s day-camp called “The country of changes” for 40 junior students aged 5 to 8 years. Every day they had Bible lessons, played various games, attended craft classes. The children were very fond of the song with movements “I’ve Got Peace Like a River” and sincerely rejoiced when singing it. In this way, while having a fun time, they learned more and more about God and His boundless love.

From June 12 to 16, another day-camp for 50 children from 12 to 17 years old was held. Each day was themed and covered the issues of love, friendship, peace… The Bible lessons were interesting, children were engaged in stories and asked personal questions. A special time was spent in the woods, where we had a picnic, played games and had a chance to talk. On the last day, children wrote their wishes on post-it notes, stuck them on a large board, and prayed for them. Many asked for “Peace in Ukraine”. We pray that it will come true.

Then from June 26 to June 30, we organized a children’s day-camp for our middle aged students, 47 children aged 8 to 12 joined it. The game “Life in an Hour” was a special one, where they could feel like adults and realize how quickly time flies. The point of the game was to make sure that in the midst of routine and everyday chores, children will not forget about the most important thing in their lives – their relationship with God. We were pleasantly surprised to see that despite the large selection of interesting locations called “school,” “work,” and “store,” some decided to go to the “church” station and spend some time there.

The result and special value of our work is that we raised four volunteers. Girls from the older group expressed a desire to join us in organizing day-camp for younger children. They prepared interesting assignments for Bible lessons, led drawing and beading classes, set up and cleaned up snacks, and were always ready to help.

“I love children very much and always dreamed of becoming a teacher, so I take an active part in everything related to this, for example, I work as a babysitter. Being a volunteer at children’s day-camp, I gained valuable experience in how to find a common language with children. It was a fun time and I got a lot of patience. I helped to lead a crafts class where children painted clay figures. They ask for different colors, and then ask: “Is it nice?”. Well, to be honest, some made good, and some did it so-so. But you say: “Yes, it’s very nice!” because you realize that they are just learning and you need to encourage them.” Sophia Kulich

Approaching the end of studies at the Center Success

May 23, 2023

Children of different age groups from preschoolers to the 11th grade study at the Center. The program is different for everyone and appropriates for age and abilities of the students. Children of any age can start studying with us. The program is designed in such a way that even a student with zero knowledge can quickly adapt and acquire a basic level of English. But what we are most concerned about is that children feel comfortable in classes and learning brings them joy. After all, there is no greater incentive to work than when it is fun.

The past two weeks, classes were held according to the plan, twice a week in each group. Our smallest group is preschoolers, they are five years old children. Classes for them are held casually, in the form of a game. This week they learned a song “I’ve got peace like a river”, children like to sing it with movements. They received stickers in their notebooks and small gifts as praise for their small successes.

“Daniilko always goes to English lessons with joy and talks a lot after them. Most of all, he values friendship with children in their class. And classes where they learn various things that will be needed in practical life. The past topic was sports and the Olympic Games. Also, Danja really likes to learn poems and perform, he asks every time about when he will learn a new poem” – shares the impressions his mother Natalya Kapush’s.

Classes for junior school groups are held in a similar way, but studying at a desk and writing tasks take up a larger percentage of time now.

For middle groups, the part of the lesson during which they play moving games is the greatest pleasure. Children learn to work in a team and discover their strengths. They always look forward to what interesting things has prepared for them their teacher this time. And it is also a very good incentive to study.

It is especially interesting to work with high school students. They are already starting to build goals and plans and preparing for admission to higher educational institutions. It is especially difficult for them to think about their future during the war. We have a special career guidance program names “Carrier Direct” for these children. After passing the test and consultation, children receive the direction of choosing a profession according to their vocation.

The “Superbook” meeting is what unites all students because here they are not divided by age. It’s pleasurableto see the interaction between children and see how the older ones help the younger ones.

“I like Superbook meetings the most. We listen to interesting stories and play a lot of games there. Last time we listened to the story about Moses leading people across the sea. Then we played a game in which we stepped from board to board so as not to fall into the water” – Slynko Darinka

 Training continues at the Center Success

May 5, 2023

The team of the Ternopil Training Center “Success” would like to share what has happened in the life of our center over the past two weeks. The Easter holidays are over, and we continue our daily ministry to children in the premises of the Center. About a hundred children attend classes every day, and in total, about 230 children from underprivileged categories study at the Center.

We also had the opportunity to receive humanitarian aid in the form of food products and personal hygiene products from our partners Operation Blessing and Orphan’s Promise. These food and hygiene products were packaged in bags for each family whose children attend our Training Center. The war in Ukraine continues, and one of the results of the war is that people lose their jobs, wages do not match the prices in stores. So your help is a great support and blessing to so many people. Parents and children are sincerely grateful for such help.

We sincerely thank the team of the “Success” Center for such timely help, as well as the donors who help us. At such a time, this is a great support” – Natalia Drozd

Thank you very much! God’s blessings to the entire team of the SUCCESS center and to all the donors who provided this support. This is an answer from God!” Danko Lyudmila

Easter celebration in the Center’s classrooms 

April 10-14, 2023

This is 421 day of full-scale war in Ukraine. The team of the “Success” Training  Center continues its activities, bringing hope and Good News about Jesus Christ to children and adults in Ternopil during this difficult time for our country.

For the past two weeks, the team of the center together with the children have been celebrating the Easter holidays in the classrooms of our center. This is the second celebration of Easter during this period of war in our country. We see the importance of having this time of celebration for children because it brings them hope and joy. For 4 days, different age groups of children gathered in the classes of the center to celebrate this great holiday. The children are from different groups of risk, such as low income families, large families, orphans, refugees and others. Children had the opportunity to hear the Bible story about the resurrection of Jesus Christ and see how it brings changes in people’s lives for 2000 years now.

Children also took part in the celebration of Easter. They performed in dramas, recital poems, sang Easter songs, etc. The atmosphere of the holiday was cheerful and fun. The children listened to the stories with great enthusiasm and took an active part in the celebration. At the end of each holiday, the children received gifts.

Here are some feedbacks from grateful parents and caregivers:

Thank you very much for such a wonderful mood that you create for our children every time. It’s so nice to see my girls discuss the celebration. Your team is doing a very necessary job” Shengera Iryna (mother of Maria – 7 years old and Anna – 11 years old).

I congratulate the team of the Success Training Center on this great holiday of the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for bringing joy and hope to our children in such a difficult time for all of us. I am especially grateful for my boys Yura and Makar, every time they return from lessons at your center, they are always in a good mood, and this is so lacking at this time! Thank you very much!” – Nataliya Lototska (mother of Makar – 10 years old and Yura – 6 years old.)

READ NEWS FROM PREVIOUS YEARS IN THE “EVENTS ARCHIVE” SECTION