$1540 per month for the coming 5 years.
this includes initial, upstart expenses to meet the needs of these young men
Artyom - the oldest in the group now living in Ushkolka
Artyom is a sweet young man, 28 years of age now, he was moved out of the orphanage within the first year or so after I began working with the teens full-time in 2008. He was at our very first picnic, I remeber the thrill on his face, simply enjoying being in a park, out doors, having fun. This simple pleasure has been rare in his life. When he turned 18, he was moved to Kahovka, where Oksana has also resided. This change of location was not a good one for Artyom.
He's lived in a room with 3 older men who do not appreciate Artyom, they don't even try. He desires to learn and asks questions of others, as he's rarely had an opportunity to be in classroom. He has been shunned, by them and others. When he goes to eat in the cafeteria he's been asked to sit else where. The simple relationship of friendship has only been offered to him by Oksana.
The head medical staff decided Artyome did not belong there, so he was released and put in a another institution in the village of Ushkolka.
So, on February 12, we made the trip to see our buddy. The delight on Artyom's face when he saw us through the window was worth every kilometer of bumps and potholes along the way. Seeing we had brought gifts for Artyom, the social worker there asked would we consider doing so next time for the other young men too. I can't help but believe that the Lord has given us an open door, through this gal, so when the time comes to move Artyom to a better place, Stephen's Home, she will be in favor of this decision. Artyom did share, amidst his excitement, that his roommate is older but helpful to him. He appreared to be healthier, filled out some, so we are prayerful, that until we can move him, Artyom is where God has placed him.
One important note about Artyom, he loves Jesus, reads his Bible, please pray with and for him.
Kiryl - Living in Kiary
Kiryl was moved to the Oleshky orpanage as a young teen, so it took quite a bit of time for him to adjust to life. It wasn't too many years later that he knew he was getting close to 18 years of age and woul dhave to be moved out. Despite many days and months of trying to become as independant as possible so he could be moved to the best option, Kahovka, Kiryl was told know. He did not meet their standard and was shipped off to Kiary.
Kiryl has shared many tears with us over the years, desparatly wanting to know he is loved and cared about. Our last visit to the men's institution in Kiary, we knew he'd celebrated birthday as we could not let that fact go unoticed. We'd brought MP3 players to give as gifts, containing sermons, Christian books, music and an audio Bible. When Kiryl asked what we'd gifted and foung out he shouted at the top of his lungs "I have my first MP3 player" over and over. He made us all laugh with joy.
Sasha - Now in Dnipriany, quite the character
Sasha is a guy with Cerebral Palsy and though he's a man of few words, he's very expessive. Like many others with palsy, speech takes all ones focused effort to formulate and most people don't have time to wait patiently to listen. I'll share with you, once Sasha's in Stephen's Home with a computer in front of him he's going to be talking a mile a minute an it's going to take quite and effort to slow him down.
At the orphanage in Oleshky, Sasha was placed in a group, surrounded by little guys, close to half his age. I stared working with him just a few years before he was moved out to Dnipriany and found out he's quite intellegant. But Sasha has also learned to play dumb, as so many have assumed that of him his whole life. Below that initial surface he's quite the treasure, just waiting to be discovered.
Sasha - at the orphanage in Oleshky
Sasha is one of the first guys that came to join in with the teen girls, when I first started working at the orphange 11 years ago. He was hungry for love and meaningful attention. Though my capabilities at that time were very limited, he understood and responded to what little I was able to offer weekly through my visits.
Today, Sasha is a young man who continues to desire to be cared for. He's smart and desires to learn and is very creative. As many of you have seen the work Oksana has done with quilling. Sasha participated in many of the same classes with Oksana and has excelled in making 3D structures with the paper and some beautiful peices of artwork. I have a feeling if given other opportunities, Sasha would jump at them and do very well. Life in the orphanage can be rather mundane, he's ready for change.