September Trip 2014

There has been quite a lot happening in September so I intend to put out three or four updates over the coming week, rather than try and squeeze everything into just one update. This first update will concentrate on the first day of the trip to L’viv, that was organised for the Family Home Orphanage children in Dnipropetrovsk.

I’d would first like to start this update with a huge thank you to Kyivstar and Carlsberg Ukraine for not only their financial and logistical support for the trip, but also for the personal assistance and advice from some pretty amazing people at these companies.










At Kyivstar I would like to give a huge thank you to Peter Cheryshov and Larisa Panchenko for introducing me to all the Kyivstar people that helped out with this trip. Irina Patsevko in L’viv was absolutely amazing in assisting with the organisation and itinerary, as well as a pleasure to meet. The tours she organised were voted amongst the best parts of the trip by the kids. On a personal level I’d also like to Tatiana Petsko and Alexander Tarasyuk for taking time out during their evenings to show me round Kiev and L’viv, and for the interesting chats about Ukraine, the cities and the company. I’d also like to thank Natalya Yuditskaya for the meeting in Dnipropetrovsk, and the offer of direct assistance for some of the project ideas that we have for the children in the city.









I would like to say a huge thank you to Slavutich, Carlsberg Ukraine, for their continued support and the logistical assistance that they provided in Kiev. Special thanks to Svetlana Veselovskaya and Yulia Zabolotnaya for their personal assistance in the organisation of the L’viv trip, and all the help and assistance they provided with travel in Ukraine. And a big personal thank you to “babooshka” Nina for the warm Ukrainian welcome upon my arrival in Kiev.


L’viv Trip for Family Home Orphanage Children


This trip began at 11.25am on Wednesday the 10th of September with an 18 hour train journey from Dnipropetrovsk to L’viv. All the kids, orphanage “parents” and helpers were gathered at the station by 11am ready to head to the platform to board the train. With it being an overnight train we booked one of the infamous “platzkart” carriages for the journey. The kids certainly seemed to enjoy the train journey, and spent most of their time running, playing and climbing in the sleeping areas. It was the firat time that some of the kids had met each other so it was an excellent opportunity to also forge new friendships.












We arrived in L’viv at around 6am and were collected at the train station by a large tour bus, which would be our main mode of transport for the next 3 days. First stop in L’viv was the hotel, to drop of the bags and a quick wash (and meet some uninvited house guests), then it was back onto the bus for a day of excursions.










The first excursion was a guided tour round the new Kyivstar administration and technical building. Irina Patsevko met us off the bus at the main entrance and escorted us into the main building, where we all received our individual passes for the day. Irina had asked for a list of everyone’s names prior to the visit and it was an excellent surprise for the children to have their own individually named passes, it made them feel pretty important and was a really good idea.











After the kids “officially” became Kyivstar employees, they all headed to the lecture room for their induction course. It was actually a very interesting video presentation, specifically for kids, of the evolution of communication and its current place in society today.










It was a very interesting presentation and the kids really enjoyed it. It was very interactive and questions were asked during the course of the presentation, with prizes to those quickest to respond with the correct answers.












After their induction the kids were ready to get to work, they were split into two groups and taken off round the building. The first task of the day for one group was to take a very important video conference call, to make sure that other branches were meeting their targets! The kids were amazed at the video technology and really enjoyed this “task”. They were even able to speak with their friends, now in another part of the building!










Meanwhile, the other group had discovered a fault, via one of the monitors in the technical department, so sent a team of experts down to the communications area to pin point where the fault was!












Unfortunately though, the fault had caused a little bit of disruption to the network, so it was off to the Call Centre to deal with the incoming calls from the affected customers ..












Thankfully a nice friendly voice with assurances that our “little experts” were on the case, and the fault had been quickly rectified, made for happy customers.












A huge thank you from the kids for an excellent tour!








After putting in a hard morning shift it was time to head out for a business lunch … and where better for our hard working “employees” than at the “EURO2012” L’viv Arena! The tour guide met us at the front of the stadium and provided us with some interesting facts about the stadium, as well as stories about the teams and players that had played there during the 2012 Championship. He then took us inside and a visit to the changing rooms.

We even got to sit in the same seat as Cristiano Ronaldo!

















We then moved inside the stadium and it looked superb. The kids were running around pitch side, getting their photos taken from all angles.



















And the tour was finished off with an amazing surprise for the kids (and adults!) .. a fantastic three course meal served up in the best hospitality lounge of the stadium! The kids looked absolutely stunned as the well dressed waiters brought out their meals!












After lunch it was back on the bus, and a short drive to the outskirts of L’viv and the Viking Bay adventure park. With bikes, go-karts, bungies, peddle boats, football and swimming amongst the many activities available the kids had a pretty good afternoon of fun.



















There were even some brave enough to start throwing themselves off bridges into the lake!!











It was a fantastic end to what had been an amazing day, and a huge thank you to Irina Patsevko and Kyivstar for organising such a memorable set of tours and excursions.



Day two in L’viv was set aside as a day to explore the city. It started with a climb to the “High Castle”, although the “castle” has long since disappeared. It was quite a hike to the top of the hill, but once at the top it presented some pretty amazing views of the city.




















Once we’d all made it back down the hill safely it was back on the bus and off to the Open Air Museum of Architecture. As the name suggests, this open air museum is a history of early buildings (and lifestyles) from the L’viv region.





























That took us up to lunchtime, so we headed back into the centre of the city for something to eat.

We headed to the Stargorad Restaurant for our pre-booked lunch, a nice big restaurant in the centre .. with its own brewery. This little fact thankfully bypassed the kids, but after all the walking that morning the adults didn’t object too much to a small sample of the home-brewed beer.



















With the meals finished, and energy levels topped up, it was back into the city centre for a guided tour of the interesting buildings and monuments around the centre. From churches to theatres, and flower clocks to statues, it was a very interesting insight into the history of the city and the people that helped to shape it.

























At the end of the tour it was a very tired group that finally jumped on one of the “old” trams and headed back to the hotel for supper .. and an early night.



Day three in L’viv was nice and simple .. a bus ride to the northern edge of the Carpathian Mountains and a full day of hill walking, with some stunning scenery, to the “Rocks of Dovbush”.

So for the rest of this update … I’ll sit back … shut up … and let you look at the photos!














































I think that this day will rank among the most memorable that the children have ever had, even if its based on just the scenery alone. The “Rocks of Dovbush” are a pretty impressive site, and the scenery on the walk there is pretty good as well .. and that’s coming from someone that is spoiled by the amazing scenery that Scotland offers!

And after a downhill walk back at “base camp” there was time to relax by the river, and the waterfalls, before settling down to a hearty meal at the nearby restaurant.













It was a very tired bunch of kids on the bus back to L’viv!!


Child Sponsorship

If you are not already a Child Sponsor please consider direct sponsorship of one of the children that we support in Dnipropetrovsk. Your monthly contributions will assist in providing birthday, Christmas and summer trips for these kids as well as helping to support the many other projects that we help fund for the children.

For details about Child Sponsorship please email me directly


Dnipro Appeal Charity Dinner 2014

Tables are going fast for this years event, which will not disappoint!

The evening will be hosted by Radio Forth DJ and TV Personality Grant Stott, and speaking at the event will be former WBO Super Featherweight Alex Arthur. Also attending will be management and playing staff (both past and present) from Hibernian FC.


With the drinks reception, Stotty’s banter, guest speaking, some astounding table magic from Ryan Davidson and music late into the night it is shaping up to be a fantastic night .. and not one to be missed.


Of course the main purpose of the night is to raise some money for Dnipro Kids charity and we’ve been gifted some magnificent “one-off” auction prizes for the night.


We are still looking for some nice auction prizes though, so if you are able to donate anything at all towards the evening then please get in touch …. steven@dniprokids.comor
















Donating to Dnipro Kids

We have a secure link set up on the main website, for anyone wishing to make a direct donation to the charity.


You can also make small donations by text.

Simply text   DNPR14 £2/£5/£10 to 70070



Visit the Facebook page and add Dnipro Kids to your friends list.



Steven Carr,

Dnipro Appeal Committee.