Arts and Crafts Camp 2016 (Jerusalem Ministry)

Post 37 of 776

Last week we held our 8th annual Arts and Crafts Camp for 3rd to 6th grade girls from orphanages around the city. This year we had 43 girls participate from 8 different homes along with 52 volunteers/staff. The following picture is of all us together on the last day after ice skating…

12493968_949069545180889_1364245799011061980_o

As with every camp we begin the day by welcoming the girls in with a big applause. The girls, although they’ve been looking forward to the camp all year, still act very insecure when they first arrive. They fear being judged by the other girls and they also feel insecure getting any attention. So on the first day many of the girls walk in like this one…

12471471_948109588610218_5098865771813685816_o

But their attitude changes throughout the camp. Here are some pictures of girls from day 2 and day 3…

12513832_949053471849163_4540912147630873742_o

Here is one of the twins. This is their third time attending…

12486064_948555481898962_8136142426959478947_o

Even Min Seung, my 6th grader, finally smiled (a little!) while entering on the third day. Min Seung is really sweet, but tries to hide when a lot of attention is focused on her. She was one of the girls that covered her face with her hood the first day.

12489346_949053478515829_8920378039330121614_o

Here is Min Seung with Sky during the camp

12487208_948111648610012_42173992247479009_o

This is Da Heen, one of the girls from my home…

12484702_948110461943464_6727424403070779209_o

On the first day while driving the girls to the camp she exclaimed to me, “I was so excited for the camp I couldn’t sleep!” She had been looking forward to it all year. And yet right after entering on the first morning she shut down, along with the three other girls at her table. The four volunteers assigned to them (1 to 1 ratio) tried their best during the icebreaker game in the morning to get the kids to talk and respond, but they all sat in silence just staring downwards. It’s amazing how strong their fears and insecurities are. But love is stronger! And within just an hour or so the girls were all opening up. Above is a picture I took with her while trying to get her to open up. She felt a bit safer with me there and was able to smile for the camera. While she was still a bit shy during the 1st day, on the 2nd day she got in front of everyone with her volunteer Tony to share about the craft she made. I was really proud of her!

12471467_948557001898810_708512867317354889_o

And she also became good friends with one of the girls at her table, Soo Jin, who is from the children’s home that my staff Jee serves at. Here is a picture of them with Sky on the last day after ice skating…

882778_949055618515615_8258139658561593765_o

Icebreakers and games helped loosen up the girls. We had a lot of sweet pictures of the girls and volunteers playing together. Here is one of them…

12474042_948555671898943_7229309870429371124_o

As the camp progressed all the kids began to open up more. Some of them shifted within just an hour or so, while others needed all three days before we saw them fully at rest and with big smiles. This is a picture of Min Young who was the only girl to attend from her children’s home (a very small one). We were told by one of the staff that Min Young rarely smiles, yet during the camp we saw her smile a lot! Here she is after making slippers.12473821_948556781898832_8969149789315448373_o

One of the littlest ones working on her slippers…

12440500_948556095232234_4640058632292967335_o

The following picture is of one of my girls, Hwa Yeon, with her volunteer Sally after making slippers. She connected really well with Sally. Hwa Yeon (and the other older girls) can be a bit pessimistic and quick to complain, but Sally was relentless in her encouragement and positive words. Gradually the girls began to receive the words of life and their demeanor changed from being quick to be negative to relaxing and smiling more

12473880_948556631898847_4305197573355774424_o

This is Na Rim, one of the very new girls at my children’s home. She arrived just a few days before Christmas, so this was her very first Arts and Crafts Camp. She loved the camp! I was blessed to see her smile a lot throughout the three days and also present her crafts in front of everyone…

12419039_948112015276642_359960826264979835_o

This craft was a name plate where the girls wrote their name and then wrote attributes about themselves on it. At first all the girls just chose very generic descriptions like, “Tall” or “Short.” But the volunteers encouraged the kids with all sorts of compliments and loving words, and soon really sweet descriptions were written on each name plate. Here is one of the oldest girls presenting her finished work…

12491969_948112558609921_2014397014401014861_o

The next picture is of Yu-Rim. She wrote me a cute letter on the last day after asking me what my name was (she had seen me running around helping throughout the camp but didn’t know my name):

제이엠쌤 사랑하고 기쁘기로합니다. 나는 좋아합니다. 사랑하는 제이엠쌤 사랑해요. 고맙기때문이에요 사랑해요. <3

JM I love you and I’m happy. I like you. Dear JM whom I love, I love you. Because I am thankful, I love you. <3

12489269_948111391943371_4726144693154645949_o

Here are two of the girls showing off their hair pieces (one of the crafts was making these) with Director Jee. The girl on the left is from an all girls home and is a soccer player (hence the boyish haircut). She arrived not looking happy at all and many of the girls (and volunteers) mistook her for a boy at first. But from the first day she began to relax and smile. Sky (our photographer) took many happy pictures of her. This was one of them…

12486097_948112775276566_3279551051387284664_o

Here she is presenting her name plate and said something funny…

12493537_948112588609918_4458314336634113804_o

For another craft the girls made gingerbread houses (using graham crackers instead of gingerbread). It’s always fun to see their creativity as they work on it…

12487179_948557301898780_7321414046766665441_o

After they all finished we placed all the houses in the back as a special presentation. The girls walked around with their volunteers and got to admire each of the houses. It was a sweet time!

12491794_948557498565427_4066759237490380381_o

On the last day the girls made scrapbooks and wrote letters to each other in them. We also gave them each at least three personal pictures that were taken during the camp. Here I’m sorting through a few hundred pictures to make sure each of the 43 girls got pictures…

12484714_949053995182444_2298243065865380424_o

Also on the last day some of the staff of Vatos Urban Tacos (http://vatoskorea.com/en/) stopped by with gifts for the girls. They did a “Pay It Forward” campaign during the week or so leading up to Christmas. During the campaign at random they would pay for a customer’s meal. They would then give the customer the option to “Pay It Forward” and give a donation of any amount towards Jerusalem Ministry. Along with purchasing many baby supplies for one of the orphanages we are connected with, they also purchased 43 new winter coats for the girls at the camp. The customers not only gave the financial donation, but they also wrote in a card from Vatos a personal letter to the girl. The girls were touched by these letters! Here are some of the Vatos staff with one of our girls reading the card she received…

12401757_949053731849137_201804895351451879_o

This was a wonderful blessing for the girls! Thank you, Vatos! Here is little Eun Hae from our camp modeling her jacket in front of everyone…

12440334_949053791849131_1371961554891225502_o

On the last day we took pictures of the girls by their table grouping. The girl in the middle of this picture doesn’t smile often and really doesn’t like the camera, but by the 3rd day Sky got her to smile for the camera many times. Praise God!

12496081_949054311849079_2623241868942112517_o

This was one of the few group shots where not all of the girls were smiling.

12471817_949054461849064_8230561400264555868_o

The girl with glasses was one of our toughest during the camp. She was new to the camp and had a lot of fear of rejection. She was also uncomfortable with the male volunteers. We kept loving on her though, and by the end of the 3rd day she was smiling and talking with me (after having avoided me and giving me upset looks the previous two days). I asked her before she left if she would like to come back next year and she enthusiastically responded, “Yes!” Love breaks through! The girl on the far right also had her ups and downs (she is about to enter junior high, which is a tough age for girls). She wrote a sweet letter to Jee on the last day apologizing for being difficult at times and she expressed her appreciation for us and for the camp. Praise God!

At the end of the last day we went ice skating together. Here is a pic of one of the girls ice skating with two of our volunteers (who happen to be married)

12485962_949055048515672_1155704689940821600_o

Here my girls Hwa Yeon and Eun Suh are posing together

12485879_949055485182295_2767055820655751430_o

Here is the Jerusalem Ministry staff: Mijeong, Sky, myself, and Jee

12473569_949056045182239_6631080317472616576_o

Last, here are pictures of me with my girls from Geon (where I’ve now served at for 10 years)

12487261_948558338565343_1673292797356434540_o

And a silly shot!

12473998_948558351898675_3442014253202103783_o

I hope you were blessed by the pictures and stories. We will post a video of the camp likely at the beginning of February (once it is completed). Thank you to everyone who made this camp special!

 

 

 

 

1 comment:

Soojin SouMay 11, 2016 at 7:37 amReply

So amazing to see the work Jerusalem Ministry is doing- I really hope to go volunteer soon! America so desperately needs a ministry like this, too!

Menu