In Zhitomir,150 kms west of Kiev, snows began to fall very heavily which made travelling to the outlying orphanages very difficult for our local team. Viktor, my manager, wrote, “We were able to visit an orphanage of 90 orphan girls with mental disabilities. Itwas an amazing meeting.We had a special show of Christmas Bible stories. We asked the children: “What is Christmas all about and who believes in Jesus?”Then we prayed with the children. There was such a lot of love and joy. Many of them hugged us and wanted us to join in their playtime. There were several children who cannot walk, and move around on their knees, like this 15 year-old girl named Yana who has a crippled arm and leg. This little 5 year–old girl has an eating reflux problem and keeps bringing up her food. 15 of these children live in an insulator and have a problem with urinary incontinence. How do you bring these children cheer at this time? Viktor asked me what he should do for them. I said, “Just make your own executive decision.” He decided the best they could do was pray for them and provide them with pampers of all different sizes. Viktor says to you, “Thank you for your grea theart to create a happy time for so many orphans who also have dreams, and some of them prayed that God would give them a gift for Christmas, and you fulfilled their dream. God bless you for your kindness.”

A Sad Time for a 17 year Deaf Girl after leaving her orphanage

Our team had a happy meeting in an orphanagfor deaf childresome 30 km from Zhitomir. A deaf girl named Natasha, who had to leave her orphanage at 17 came to the meeting. She had gotten pregnant at that orphanage. She had her baby of 15 days with her and was in great need of the most basic things for her baby. Viktor decided to buy pampers, baby clothes, shoes, a catsuit for her baby and other essentials. Another good executive decision. Natasha was so grateful for the help. Viktor and his wife Allamet with her again for further counselling and encouragement.

There was also a Happy Christmas at the Street Kid’s Centre In Zhitomir

Here there are 50 children from 3 to 16 years from different critical situations. Some are orphans, some of them have been taken from families of drug addicts or alcoholics, and some the police found wandering the streets. The children happily greeted us. Viktor said, “We had a short Christmas program – we told them about Harvest Time Page 2 the birth of Jesus, that He is the Saviour of the world, and that He loves every person on earth, especially little children. Each child received a gift and a colouring book of Bible stories.

Lugansk, Eastern Ukraine

I n addition ensuring all the orphanages we support in this area, had a special Christmas season, Viktor embarked on a brave Christmas project into the troubled war zone of Lugansk in Eastern Ukraine. Many of these children are recent orphans who lost their parents early this year. Viktor wrote, “We went ahead and bought a 100 Christmas gifts for these needy orphans. David, I apologize to you – I did not ask your permission to do this – I spent $100 to buy gifts for these children. But I believe that we were able to support these unfortunate children at the time of the war, making them a little joyful.’ Good decision, Viktor.

Orphans in the Chernobyl radiation zone

O ur team visited an orphanage of 130 children in the northern region of Korosten – Zhytomyrs’ka. Viktor says, “We have worked for several years with this orphanage. This is an area that has high radiation. After the 1986 nuclear reactor exploded in the north of Ukraine in Chernobyl, most of northern Ukraine to this day has a radiation emission. We were able to tell the children about the birth of Christ, His ministry on earth, and how He loves us all and works in our lives today. I invited all the children to pray with me. The children were happy to receive their gifts and Bible story books.”

Winter Jackets for Orphans in Zhitomir area

V iktor said that recently he was very busy with ministry to the poor families and there was no opportunity to visit a nearby orphanage, but he felt the urge to go there. He was given several meetings with older children and some prayed and received Jesus into their lives. Good timing. He also found out that during the snows of February, there was a special need for warm jackets for the younger children. Last spring, there was a fire in the orphanage and several rooms and all the contents were burned, including a lot of children’s warm clothes. Many of these children did not have jackets, so they never went outside to play and exercise. Viktor was able to find cheaper priced jackets (before local prices rose strongly) called Halafayder jackets – warm and light-weight in blue, green & red. Even children from 4 to 7 years got jackets as well. Viktor said, “Over the last 4 days in Ukraine the national currency fell to a record low – Gasoline rose by 2.5 times and many products have disappeared from the shelves of shops. Viktor says, “I was left with more than $100.” How’s that for honesty. I told him that he could have it for his own family needs. He has two little children of his own.

Orphans School Project N.Volinsk Orphanage

The 45 older children N.Volinsk orphanage 100 km from Zhitomir, didn’t mind receiving school supplies and educational requisites as Christmas gifts, such as pens, notebooks, paints, pens, markers, calculators, pencil cases, drawing sets, coloured pencils etc. The orphanage director thanked us very emotionally for the gifts and school supplies, and for all the help we have given orphans in the past. In a meeting with the children before they received school supplies, Viktor told them that Jesus loves them and that they have a chance in life to achieve His destiny for them, and that they should keep trusting the Lord all their lives. They had a short prayer together with the children. The children were very grateful for the gifts and school supplies they had desperately needed. We also had a Christmas gift project for the 100 younger children of the N.Volinsk orphanage, where they received gifts and books of Bible stories.