Disabled Youth Visit the Cliffs of Tustan’ in the L’viv Region


There’s nothing better than the mountains! Clients of the Amazing Hands Centre of Recreation and Social Rehabilitation and Adaptation for Special Needs Individuals run by the Drohobych Caritas certainly agree with this statement. Recently they visited the Tustan’ cliffs in the village of Urych in the L’viv region.

On 17 September special needs youth spent the day in the fresh air, under the gentle autumn sun, and the watchful eye of the great Tustan’ cliffs. Not only did the friends benefit from the therapeutic trip, but so did their parents who hiked up the cliffs with their children. The entire day was filled with activity.

The trip was great fun: they set out with a prayer for a nice day and a safe journey, sang songs, and told happy stories. The parents had a wonderful opportunity to share their child rearing experiences, the home educational process and their cooking tricks. They arrived at their starting point in a terrific mood. They maintained a fighting spirit and the anticipation of seeing true beauty during the climb to the top of the cliffs. Every step opened new unimagined horizons, beautiful views, and a sense of awe at the beauty of nature. Having reached the top, everyone breathed a sigh of relief. The seemingly endless uphill climb was over and they could revel in the majesty of the natural landscapes.

The guide explained the origin of the cliffs and what conditions were like when they were created. The interesting story helped the hikers better understand the way of life of the people who lived in the area. For clients of Caritas’s Centre for the Disabled it was interesting to learn of the history of their native land, and to acquire new knowledge.

Returning from the cliffs to the flat lands that spread into the foothills was a real accomplishment. The sun on the cliffs seemed unrelenting, and thirst was stronger than the desire to see something new. Luckily, during the descent, they came across a spring near a stature of the Virgin Mary where the special needs youth took a break. The following inscription was found under the statue: In the foothills of the Castle Tserkovtsi a spring appeared. The Virgin Mary appeared and, dipping her hand into the spring, stated: “You sprung out of this land and will safeguard this land and its people!”

“The trip was filled with games, entertainment, happy songs, dance, the chance to learn new things and to realize that they possess skills of endurance and independence. The hikers were so pleased with the trip that they threw coins into the spring to ensure their eventual return’ said Lyudmyla Smolen”, the coordinator od centre for disabled people.

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