On this visit to Ukraine, we were able to travel to 5 cities and provide aide to thousands of children. It was a joy to visit with friends, church members, orphans, directors, and many others. The entire Fillmon family traveled to Ukraine for 3 weeks. We arrived safely, and were off by train to Dzerzhinsk. This trip was a combination humanitarian and Bible camp, as 27+ Americans descended on Dzerzhinsk. The children eagerly awaited our arrival, and we came with joyful expectations ready to sow the seeds of Jesus. There is a detailed list of distribution at the end of this report. We encourage you to review our website, www.hiskidstoo.org to see the Summer Photo Gallery.
The Bible Camp consisted or 2 camps, 1 at a local school, the other at the local Internat (Boarding School) for orphans. Eighty children were at each camp. Every child received a Russian Bible, and each day was filled with learning, singing, playing, and praying. The first 10 days of our trip we visited facilities and then we had the camp. Our shipment had arrived (see Photo Gallery) in Crimea, but had problems with customs, and the would not be released until Thursday into the camp. Teachers were busy trying to pull together craft supplies, and in the end it all worked out, but it was fairly frantic. The kids didn’t seem to notice, until the supplies did come and then they realized the difference. A major portion of your humanitarian aide was in the shipment, thus making the last days in Dzerzhinsk quite busy with distribution. In just 4 days we distributed over 1000 lbs. of aide. We were blessed to make an agreement with the director of the local Internat that educates 460 children, and is home to over 70 children, that she allow us to set up a ‘clothing closet’ in a room where we could bring children to fit them with clothing. We not only serve the orphans, but many of the very poor students. Additionally in Dzerzhinsk, His Kids, Too! serves a local orphanage (50 +/- children), Artum Orphan Hospital (25+/- children), and the local mental hospital (40 patients). Each of these facilities was visited and aide given. We are also serving 25 widows with monthly food bags, in addition to helping with the Donetsk feeding program (50 persons).
The Norvgorosk Internat is home to 45 orphans. This very poor facility and we have built a good relationship with the new director. She welcomed us warmly, and appreciated the orphanage assistance. The children were still wearing clothing from our last visit, and we could see other items we had previously donated. Stewardship is very important, but also, remembering that kids are very ‘hard’ on toys, shoes, clothing, etc. We understand that most things will need replacing frequently. The Artemivsk Baby Home was a new facility in Spring for His Kids, Too! This facility is home to 120 children between the ages of 0 and 4 yrs. old. This visit brought us on the first day that the new director and new chief doctor were at the facility. Our friend Natasha was there, and was a great help with introductions. WE were able to see all the children, and talked about the aide that they need and the future assistance that we will provide.
In Donetsk, we visited Teremok Orthopedic Hospital (60 +/-), the Aids facility (130 children), and Our Children Orphanage (150 +/-). Each facility we were greeted warmly, and everyone was pleased with their gifts. We have some specific needs for these facilities, which will be listed below. We also visited the City Baby Home, where we needed to drop off a gift, and provide fruit for 120 children. This trip took us to a new facility. Traveling 2 hours from our base in Dzerzhinsk, we went to the facility that Ukraine ‘houses’ their most disabled children and adults. We made 2 trips to this facility, where ‘the Forgotten’ live. These people live in deplorable conditions, and are warehoused until they die. We forewarn you, the photos in the photo gallery are difficult to look at, but depict the true images of this place. Their needs are listed below. Each night while in Dzerzhinsk ladies Bible classes were offered. Attendance was good for the classes, with an average of 20 ladies each evening. After a discussion with the ladies, it was decided that they wanted to study the Parables.
Donations and Needs:
Dzerzhinsk Internat: clothing, shoes, socks, personal care bags (soap, shampoo, conditioner, toothbrush and paste, combs, hair clips for the girls, nail files, pencils, pens, stickers, chap stick), sheets, towels, toys/games, and sport equipment, medicine.
Needs: personal care bags, shoes, facility needs repairs ($400.00), 3x ointment, Band-Aids.
Dzerzhinsk Orphanage: clothing, shoes, socks, toothbrushes and paste, large bottles of shampoo, soap, sheets, towels, toys/games, sport equipment, medicine.
Needs: personal care bags, shoes (constant need)
Artum Baby Hospital: Blankets, sheets, clothing, toys, busy boxes for cribs, medicine.
Needs: clothe diapers (pins and rubber pants), ‘busy boxes’, and crib mobiles, diaper ointment.
Teremok Orthopedic Hospital: clothing, medicine, and toys
Needs: specialized equipment for CP children, funds ($100.00 monthly) to continue juice program
New Hospital: 50 new wool blankets
Needs: mattresses, sheets, pillow cases (they have, but need new ones), cost for all for 50 beds: $250.00.
City Baby Home – Donetsk: 20 kilos of bananas, personal gifts for workers and a specific child.
Internot – Donetsk:
Needs: Funds for feminine hygiene products for 75 girls. Cost $160.00 per month.
‘Our Children’ Orphanage: clothing, blankets, socks, busy boxes, and toys, medicine, knitted hats, 20 kilos of bananas, plates and cups. We continue to serve these orphans with the juice and diaper program.
Needs: Funds to continue existing programs ($200.00 monthly), 30 mattresses, sheets, and plastic lining for their new wing ($500.00); baby clothing, ‘busy boxes’ and mobiles for cribs.
Artemivsk Baby Home: knitted baby hats, blankets, and toys for every child. Needs: clothe diapers (pins, and rubber pants), shoes Norvgorosk Internat: clothing, socks, personal care bags, sheets, towels, toys/games, sport equipment, medicine
Needs: personal care bags, shoes, facility needs repairs ($500.00), clothing, new mattresses ($500.00). computer to process paperwork ($500.00), globes and wall maps.
Mental Hospital: 40 sheets, socks, clothing for 40 patients, sleepwear for patients, underclothes.
Needs: funds for food program ($60.00 monthly)
Widows – 25 local widows received their monthly food bags. His Kids, Too! has joined in the assistance of feeding 50 poor families in Donetsk. These combined efforts will cost $450.00 monthly to feed 75 people. Needs: Funds for the feeding program.
The New Invalid Facility: 350+ children/adults: 4-28 yrs. of age. Clothing, personal care products, soap, socks, medicine, 500 bars of soap, laundry detergent, Pampers, underclothes, 300 cups, wheelchair, crutches, 9 buckets, 9 tea kettles, new Dr. coats, sport equipment, sheets, 4 Potty chairs (thank you Dr. Wharton!), toys, busy boxes for cribs, and toothbrushes.
Needs: for 300+ people/children: Funds to purchase mass medicines and syringes ($40.00 per box of 1000), 200 personal care bags for teen/adult residents, sheets ($400.00), towels ($250.00), blankets ($2000.00), laundry soap ($100.00), **cloth diapers** (plastic pants and pins – children lie in their waste), ‘Depends’, plastic sheeting ($100.00), 6 busy boxes, 10 baby walkers ($120.00 all).
A cottage industry was established with many of the ladies in the church. Now available in the His Kids, Too! Gift Shop are children’s Ukrainian costumes, some with matching doll outfits. All proceeds will go to these ladies which will provide them with an income.
This trip was a good one, but a difficult one. Our visit at the new facility was overwhelming. God gave us strength and vision to help these unfortunate, but precious souls. Teresa will return to Ukraine in October, and will visit each of these facilities again; over 500 lbs. of winter aide await distribution in Ukraine. More is on the way. We thank each of you who support this work through your prayers, encouragement, and financial giving. Every dollar can make a difference. Lives are changing.
To God be all the glory!
Director/His Kids, Too!