One of the first books that I read, "Fields of the Fatherless," had spoke of a man by the name of George who was working in Russia with the International Bible Society and was moved by the conditions of the orphanages and the grave needs of the children there. Although he and his wife were unable to adopt, he felt burdened to bring hope to these children. He began by investing his time to help these orphans, shared the vision with his friends and together started Children's Hope Chest, which today helps thousands of orphans each day. (Below is some information and a video from their website if you're interested). It's amazing how God blesses our efforts when we're willing to do what he's asked. This was just one man, giving the little that he had, and thousands have been impacted. Certainly these children need homes, families, parents......but right now in the midst of their seemingly hopeless circumstances they need hope. They need to know the love of a heavenly Father...and they need someone to tell them.
Here's some information from Children's Hope Chest's website, specifically regarding Russia:
The ChallengeMany children in this vast and complex country are “social orphans.” While some have lost parents to death, many have been orphaned because of alcohol abuse, economic, or other social factors. In many areas of Russian society, the word “orphan” is often synonymous with “worthless.”
The orphan story doesn’t end at the orphanage. As young teens, orphans face another crisis, one that threatens their future. This second crisis happens the day they “graduate” from the orphanage—on this day, their chances for survival are cut in half.
According to the Russia Ministry of Education, the typical orphan statistics are grim:
- 60% of orphanage “graduates” are unemployed or not in school
- 50% use drugs and abuse alcohol
- 60% fall into prostitution to survive
- 15% take their own lives.
The HopeChest SolutionChildren’s HopeChest provides the benefits of sponsorship to children who are living in orphanages. Sponsorship funds raise the level of care in a variety of ways. Most important are the relationships children form with their HopeChest Discipler and individual sponsors. The Discipler visits the orphanage on a regular basis, providing support and encouragement—and teaching them about the Father who loves them and will never forsake them.
In addition, HopeChest provides over 1,000 orphans with protective services through our Ministry Centers, Family Centers, Independent Living Center Programs, and the Young Mothers Program. Girls and boys in these programs are not only safe, but loved and cared for by our dedicated staff.
All HopeChest programs are designed to help these children beat the odds, to become productive citizens and mature Christian adults with healthy families of their own.
For over 15 years, Children’s HopeChest has been at the forefront of providing the support orphans need to thrive. These programs have a proven track record of dramatically reducing the likelihood that these children fall into sex trafficking, crime, prostitution, alcoholism, unemployment, and suicide. They are HopeChest’s most effective programs for positive long-term outcomes.