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August 2018
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UN Global Day of Parents 2017

UPF-Russia Celebrates Children and Parents

Novosibirsk, Russia—The 2017 UN Global Day of Parents was celebrated together with International Children’s Day, a holiday that is very dear to Russians.

Held for the first time, this year's double celebration exceeded all the most daring expectations of the organizers, the Novosibirsk Regional Youth Library and the Siberian chapter of the Universal Peace Federation, headed by Dmitry V. Oficerov.

The main highlight of the celebration was the participation of "special" children and their parents from the Center for Adaptation of Children with Children's Cerebral Palsy.

About 40 people gathered on the sidewalk in front of the library. In addition to the children and their parents, the festival was attended by students of School No. 3, a medical college. Sometimes passers-by joined one or another game. We can safely say that there have never been so many participants in the Summer Reading Hall on Krasny (Red) Avenue! In total, more than 200 people took part in the celebration.

One of the activities was “sampling the love temperature.” This activity was conducted by Dmitry V. Oficerov, head of UPF-Siberia. With colored markers, anyone could put marks to estimate their love for friends, children, spouses and their own parents. I must say that almost all the estimates were positive. The temperature of love on this day on Krasny Avenue was extremely favorable.

Students of the medical college, absolute winners (they received a soccer ball as a present), decided to stay for a master class on parental love. This topic appeared to be very interesting to teenagers of 17.

Particularly attractive were the playgrounds where desktop and outdoor games, quizzes, contests and master classes were held. The girls were taught to make original hairpins, and there was a contest for knowledge of Alexander Pushkin's poems and favorite cartoon characters. On the porch of the library a small but very beautiful castle was erected, next to which stood a fancy carriage. There girls who wanted to find out if they were suitable for the role of a princess tried on Cinderella's shoes. For boys, a contest was held, "From Ivanushkas to Kings," in which they competed in bravery and ingenuity as well as knowledge of Russian fairy tales.

Not all the children with cerebral palsy could play at all the venues, even with the help of their parents, but participation in at least some games and master classes gave them great pleasure, judging by their faces and the faces of their parents. The chips that were earned in these activities were immediately exchanged for sweet prizes: big and small chocolates.

Parents were solemnly presented with letters of commendation and gifts from the organizers. The work of any parent deserves huge gratitude; how much harder it is to be the parent of a sick child! This implies endless work that is inconspicuous and, as a rule, underestimated. We wanted very much to cheer these parents and show that they are not forgotten, they are appreciated, and they are not alone in their service to children and their parental love.

I would like to believe that the organizers succeeded. On this day only the rain could make spectators and participants disperse. Fortunately, the heaviest rain came at the very end, when the program was coming to an end.

The day turned out to be bright, noisy, big, a little chaotic, a little sad—in general, unusual. Everybody liked it.

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