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Since the war in Ukraine began, fewer of our youth and families are in Zhytomyr. Many are now refugees. In Zhytomyr, our community is really feeling the impact of war. But after several months of reduced programming, we were finally able to invite some of our Stop the Cycle families to the Shelter for our first Stop the Cycle meeting of the summer. For these kids, our Shelter – including the equipment The Ball Project has provided – is a safe place to play and be together with their caring Last Bell family, even in the midst of war.

Ball Project is grateful for our partners in Ukraine & around the world working faithfully to build communities & help children play.

Isn’t it a riddle and awe-inspiring that things can be so beautiful, despite the horror? I’ve seen something wondrous peering through my joy in the beautiful, a sense of its creator. Only people can be truly ugly, because they have free will to separate themselves from this song of praise. It often seems they will drown out this hymn with cannon thunder, curses, and blasphemy. But I have realized they will not succeed. And so I want to throw myself on the side of the victor.” – Sophie Scholl

To date our partners & friends in Ukraine, like Last Bell & Sportsquest, are all safe & healthy. Some have stayed put, some have evacuated.

Friends from the region are asking for prayers for peace, safety & wisdom for everyone in Ukraine, Russia & the Russian speaking world.

No one in the world can change Truth. What we can do and should do is to seek truth, and to serve it when we have found it. The real conflict is the inner conflict. Beyond armies of occupation and the catacombs of extermination camps, there are two irreconcilable enemies in the depth of every soul: good and evil, sin and love. And what use are the victories on the battlefield if we are ourselves defeated in our innermost selves?” – Maximilian Kolbe

Here is a fun & encouraging update from Indy based partner Last Bell that works in Ukraine:

Last Bell serves orphanage graduates in Zhytomyr, Ukraine. We start with mentorship, then begin meeting practical needs in the areas of housing, education, job skills, parenting classes, and counseling.

Our first contact with orphanage graduates is in the trade schools in our city, where orphan teens are sent from all over the region. Then we invite them to the Day Center. One reason our youth love the Day Center is that we have ping pong, Foosball, and other games that Ball Project has helped us provide.

For some of our youth, this is the first time in their lives they’ve had fun with adults who care about them. It may also be the first time they’ve seen ways to have fun without alcohol! Our Foosball and ping pong tables are always busy. The Day Center is a place for learning and play, in contrast to the trade schools where our students are often frustrated and lonely.

As a reminder, Ball Project helps fund all kinds of project for all kinds of partners with the goal to help children play. Ball Project helps coaches, teams, schools, rehab centers, orphanages, churches & more.

Ball Project is thankful for our partners around the world working faithfully to build their communities & help children play.

Help children play

“Give me a ball and I’ll have a thousand kids chasing after it.” –Solomon, Kenya

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