The team divided
Since we visited the hospital on Wednesday our Friday was a free day. Seven of the team spent the day with Vitaly and that night boarded a train for a 4 day holiday in St Petersburg.
The remaining team members took an early bus to Moscow. It was the first time Stephanie, Donna, and I could sit down with Yuiry and Lena to talk about their ministry, Comfort, Keeping Kids Home. Comfort is a legally recognized charity in Russia.
The official news agency of Russia has reported that some 90 percent of children in orphanages are not true orphans as they do have living parents. Due to poor conditions, inadequate nutrition and insufficient emotional care, many of these children are underdeveloped mentally and physically. The older the child and the longer he/she is in the system, the greater the emotional and, often, physical problems become.
Keeping Kids Home is working to keep Russian children out of the system. The program was created with the thought that the most difficult time for a parent financially is when a child is under 6 years of age. Also, this is the period when the parent is most likely to become desperate enough to abandon the child to an orphanage. This seems to be confirmed by previous statistics, which indicate that a major cause of poverty is lack of childcare for children under 1.5 years.
In three years of working with needy families, no family in the Program has ever abandoned their child to an orphanage. In addition, six mothers have made decisions not to abort their babies.
We have trusted Lena with our lives as she and Vitaly help us with our trips to Russia. We are in constant contact with Lena and Yuiry and believe them to be grounded Christian with the burning desire to help the children on Russia.
What could be a better match for Treasures than Comfort? If we can provide the means to stop the abandonment of children, then the chance of reaching their souls is increased. Now the rest of the story, the three home visits were with Comfort families. I have no doubt the mom who lost her arm will now be a soul winner for her family!
These are the steps:
Treasures has taken a step of faith and asked Yuiry to find 10 families we can take into our hearts. We believe God has been directing our steps to this moment in time.
We are building a website for Comfort at this time. Yuiry is an outstanding statistician to back up his program. They have been recognized by the Illinois Congressman John Dennis "Denny" Hastert and the Congress of the United States. The word "Ytecheneye" means Comfort. The information on the site will be extensive, so please keep checking for the site to be completed. http://www.keepingkidshome.com
Without you none of this would be possible! We want to thank each and everyone of you who helped transport us to Houston, prayed for the team, sponsored team members, bought dolls, yoyos, cars, jewelry, Bibles, and donated instruments. Because of you lives were touched halfway around the world.
Stephanie, Donna, and Howard