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Transformed Places, Transforming People


May 22, 2018


This is not just another building project.

 

Last year my husband and I bought a new house. It was new to us but already well loved by another family for many years. The moment we walked in we could tell that memories have already been built in that home. We were excited about the possibilities of what this home would mean for our family, extended family and even friends over the years as our kids grow up. Being a home over 25 years old, we knew that we would have to invest in some renovations to the home and some of our own personal touches to make it ours.

 

Similar to our home, the Vladimir Ministry Center in Vladimir, Russia has been very well-loved over the years. Purchased and dedicated in 2004, this Ministry Center has seen thousands of people walk through the doors. To say it is well-loved is an understatement. We are entering the 14th year of this Ministry Center being a “home away from home” for so many older orphans, their children and for our Russia staff. The activities that take place each day are transforming the lives of so many.

Women gathering to celebrate at the Vladimir Ministry Center for Women’s Day!

You see, when an older orphan walks through those doors, their label as an orphan is removed. The stigma that has been placed on them by society is gone. They know there are people waiting on the other side of those doors ready to welcome them with a warm Russian greeting and, of course, some hot tea. They know they have dignity and respect inside that building. They are told each day their value. Over the years there have been holiday celebrations, counseling, cooking classes, life skills taught, mentorship and job skills trainings. Those are just a few of the activities provided for these young adults.

 

Because we want this place to continue to serve the youth and be a place of warmth and welcome, it is time for us to make some changes to the Ministry Center to deepen our impact. The kitchen is a place for gathering–conversation and connection occur around the table– and regular cooking classes! We will be expanding our kitchen and dining space to allow for more of that.

Cooking Club participants learning how to cook stroganoff. In the Cooking Club, participants not only learn how to make healthy, delicious meals, but they also learn how to budget for their food! Many orphanage graduates have spent the majority of their lives in an orphanage and have never had to buy or cook their own food before.

We will be putting in new windows that provide a better seal for heat during the harsh winter months, as well as renovating our counselor’s room for her and these young adults to have a more private space for those important conversations. Our young mother’s playroom will also be moved to a different room to allow for more developmental play to occur.

Here, women are participating in the Young Mothers Program. This program provides psychological, social, and financial aid to young single mothers in crisis situations. The objective of this program is to come alongside female orphanage graduates and support them with resources to succeed in their role as mothers.

In all my travels with my job, our Ministry Centers in Russia are one of my favorite places to spend time at. I have seen relationships transformed, mothers be equipped to care for their children, friends reacquainted, and our staff invest and care for these youth in such a deep way that you stand in awe of their perseverance. I am inspired by each of them.

Individual counseling is an incredibly impactful resource provided at the Ministry Centers. Through counseling, Russian youth can process their experiences and gain the confidence they need to succeed in life.

We cannot do this renovation alone! We are completing this joint campaign in partnership with Orphans Tree. Please consider a generous gift toward this project – It is not just another building project but is an avenue for more connection, more relationship and more redemption.

 

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We are asking you to prayerfully consider giving a generous donation so we can deepen our impact in Vladimir!

The Vladimir Ministry Center, as well as our other two Ministry Centers in Kostroma and Kirov, provide transformative programs that are incredibly beneficial, but severely underfunded. Your support in revitalizing the Vladimir Ministry Center and furthering our impact in Russia can make a difference in hundreds of young lives! 

If you would like to make a donation, please click the link below.

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