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Developing Children’s Creative Potential
Through music, acting and the visual arts, Father’s House, a ministry in the Ukraine, is developing the creative potential of disadvantaged children.

Through training in music, acting and the visual arts, Father’s House is developing the creative potential of children in its care. Father’s House is an indigenous Christian ministry to street children and other disadvantaged children that is based in Ukraine in partnership with Intercede International.

Singing Hearts

Among positive changes Father's House introduces into the lives of the children is to develop their creative gifts. Children learn to play music, act in the theatre, and create with their own hands different objects of art from natural and synthetic materials. Creative groups in each of these areas were developed to satisfy the children's artistic needs and assist in their all-around development. These activities generate positive emotions from a very young age and help the children to learn to serve others.

Singing Hearts is Father’s House’s vocal music group. It allows children to exercise their musical gifts in serving disabled children, children at orphanages, students at boarding schools, teenagers in prisons, poor people and the elderly.

The theatre studio group Dialogue has a goal to develop a child’s creative potential through acting and to minister to others through performance. At the studio, the children learn the actor’s art, specific acting techniques, and skills for getting the feel of a role. At the same time children learn self-control and discipline.

Dialogue has participated in a theatre festival in Lviv, a charity event for the poor and elderly, organized action for support of poor families in Gaivoron and Koziatyn towns, and performed a Christmas play in schools, governmental and private institutions.

The art studio teaches children to develop their talents as they create art and visualize their own potential to be transformed as they watch small pieces of fabric or material become masterpieces.

Marina, a young woman who has benefited from the Father’s House creative arts programs says, “I'm in the eighth grade. I love to sing and dance. I attend the theatre studio. Together with the Singing Hearts music group I take part in performing all over Ukraine and in many other countries. With theatre performances we have visited a lot of governmental, charity organizations, and churches of Ukraine. We were openly welcomed everywhere.

“I especially liked our performance in the U.S.A. People who came to the concert were so kind. They listened, sang with us, supported us, and even cried. I liked those open hearts. They received us in their homes, as the dearest and most honoured guests. They fed us and blessed us. When we were leaving, they said goodbye with tears in their eyes!”

Alan Doerksen is publications editor and production manager for Intercede International, 201 Stanton St., Fort Erie, Ontario, L2A 3N8. E-mail: adoerksen@intercedenow.ca.

Originally published in Mission Gateway, April 2010. The story has been adapted slightly from the original.

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