Agape Training School

    Agape Ministry School for Adaptation Center Leaders - 3rd Session

From March 17-20 at the Nehemiah Educational Centre in Uzhgorod, Ukraine, Agape conducted the 3rd session of our Ministry School for Adaptation Center Leaders.

This time,  the leaders of our Adaption Centers were not the only ones in attendance. We had other friends studying with us from the Zakarpatiya region of Ukraine: parents in the process of adoption as well as leaders from group homes, house parents of foster homes, etc.  Altogether, we had about 50 people attend this training session.

The topic covered during this session was "Working with children who have experienced trauma." This was taught by Jan Simmering from Holland. Jan was an orphanage director for 12 yrs., is the father of 7 children (3 of them adopted), and has 40 yrs. experience in social work, family counseling and youth work.

There was a lot of new information for most of those attending, but there was also opportunity to process that information by breaking up into small groups periodically. Not only that, but there was time specifically set aside to share experience in ministry, as well. House parents, adoptive parents and leaders of adaption centers responsible for anywhere from 7-10 children or teens could share about real life ministry. They openly shared of the challenges and victories, the tears and joy of their daily life with others who had also committed themselves to this life of ministry. Some were just getting started, others were dealing with problems that they had no answer to, but sharing experiences was something that all could gain from. During this seminar, these people were able to make new friends, to encourage and support each other. Learning that you're not alone, that others have gone through the same difficulties and found answers is a great encouragement. Many of those present met each other for the first time as the session began, but as the seminar progressed, they became like family for each other thanks to the shared ministry and desire to see the lives of traumatized children redeemed and transformed.

Alexander Fedorchuk, founder of Agape Ministries and Sergei Nesteruk, National Director of Agape Ministries, joined the students for the last day of the training. Alexander and Sergei sat down with the leaders of the different adaptation centers and group homes and discussed ideas for working together to further develop this vital ministry to the teen orphanage graduates of Ukraine.

We are grateful for the wonderful time together that God gave us to study, share our challenges and  problems with others ...and just enjoy relaxing and being with so many others committed to the same ministry. Praise God for a great seminar!