And here, we think the winter is a slow and sleepy time, when in actual fact, life is racing along, bring all kinds of twists and turns and changes!
A spurt of cold weather in Odessa (yes, even cold by Canadian standards!) has caused the closure of two of the orphanages in which WHU staff work. At the moment, the orphanages have closed for one week. Our staff are hoping to get back to their regular schedule and time with the kids by next week! Please continue to think of them as they navigate Ukraine's wintry roads.
The foster care pilot has seen a number of changes.Towards the end of December, two more of our girls, sisters, decided to leave their foster home. This time, however, the departure was bitter-sweet. On the one hand, our team and the foster parents were sad to have the girls leave. On the other hand, these sisters will be living as a family with their older sister, who was not apart of the foster care pilot and is currently attending university in Odessa. World Hope Ukraine was glad that they were able to help the sisters obtain the necessary document, so that they are able to receive government financial support, and enroll them in college. The foster parents are keeping in touch and making sure the girls are managing.
On a lighter note, three more young women were able to enter the pilot and be placed in homes in the last month. Three girls from Hope House, Yana, Tanya and Tanya, were placed in two foster homes. The placement of these girls in foster homes is two fold: one, the girls are living with families, feeling the love, support, and consistency of a family unit, and two, their placement in foster homes has opened up beds in Hope House. Sergiy has already mentioned that orphanages have been contacting him, requesting that they take new girls at the end of this school year! It looks as though Hope House will be full again before too long!
Finally, we can welcome a new set of foster parents to the team, Danik and Sveta! Dina spent long hours preparing them to welcome Yana into their home.
And so, our project has once again hit some bumps in this road. Nonetheless, onward we go, doing and hoping the best for these girls!