At the Ivano-Frankivs’k Caritas they have a nice tradition of bidding the Christmas holiday season goodbye after the Feast of Jordan and St. John the Baptist’s Day. This year the Rozkolyada united nearly one hundred charitable organizations including those who serve the disabled, victims of totalitarian regimes, children of labour migrants, and children in poor families.
Because Rozkolyada is a traditional farewell to the Christmas-New Year’s holidays they sing carols, recite poems and revive the old tradition of Malanka. On the eve of the celebration children, adolescents, parents, guardians and the elderly prepared snacks together, set tables, and a dessert buffet. Young people with functional disabilities learned carols and their lines for a nativity play. The play was a treat not only for those who watched but for those who performed in it as well.
Patronychi, a group of students from the seminary also performed as did a group from the Krykhivets National Home. “We are very happy to have the opportunity to perform for such a special audience. Caritas always really enjoys our performances and pleasing the audience is most important for performers!” explained the woman who played the role of a gypsy from the National Home.
At the end of the holiday everyone joined together to carol Nova Radist’ Stala.
“Such events are very important for our clients because they unite children, disabled young people and their parents and the elderly,” noted Lyudmyla Maksymyuk, Coordinator of the Network of Social Integration Centres for People with Mental Disabilities.“
Caritas of the Ivano-Frankivs’k UGCC was founded in 1992. Their first projects were a soup kitchen and setting up humanitarian aid distribution points.
Currently the Ivano-Frankivs’k Caritas offers:
· A Soup kitchen
· Home care for isolated and ill individuals who are advanced in age
· Courses on how to care for the ill
· Assistance for multi-child families, children and adolescents who are living through crisis
· A day-care centre for mentally ill adolescents
· Services for the children of labour migrants
· Services that help prevent human trafficking and assist victims of this crime
· Emergency assistance
· Humanitarian aid
· Free events and other services