Edna standing in front of the orphanage with a bag of mandarins for the children.
Today we met with Jim and Marianna Peipon at an orphanage here in Bila Tserkva. They came down from Kyiv so that we could meet with the director of the orphanage and discuss possible ways that we can spend time with the orphans there, especially those with AIDS (Please take the time to read about their ministry with AIDS orphans and Ukraine Medical Outreach by clicking HERE). We have been able to join the Peipons in Kyiv to visit AIDS orphans in the past, but now is our chance to do something similar in Bila Tserkva. The children housed at this orphanage, which is a converted kindergarten, all suffer from some type of disability or medical condition that keeps them out of regular orphanages. The fifty children that were there are all under the age of five.
Part of the playground outside the orphanage.
Our hope is that people from our church and anyone else that would be interested in spending time with these children, will have an open door to do so. Due to the health of the children and their varied conditions, visitors wishing to volunteer at the orphanage will need to go through a medical screening process before being allowed to work with the children. We were told that because of the flu season and the winter time schedule the children are on, we would have to wait until summer before being able to visit. Unfortunately we won't be here then, but we are praying that others will have a burden on their hearts for these children of God.
The director of the orphanage in her office.
After speaking with the director we were given a tour of the facilities. We had visited this orphanage about two and half years ago when we first moved to Bila Tserkva and were amazed by how far it has come. It looks much better than when we saw it the first time. I pray that the repairs and improvements continue and that we get permission for Christians to visit these children and show them the love of Christ.
Physical therapy room.
Audio and visual therapy room.
Jim, who is a pediatrician, wasn't sure what type of therapy this equipment was used for and honestly it looked pretty scary.
The doctor in charge of the HIV/AIDS children showed us the bathroom the children use.
Sadly, we have previously witnessed the fact that play time consists of all the children being dumped into this central playpen. All those colorful toys almost certainly never leave the shelf. Look, but don't touch.
And finally, this is the reason we were there. These are the HIV/AIDS children. We know from past experience that they aren't given much if any affection. They need more than clinical care, they need loving hands that aren't afraid to hold them.
After leaving the orphanage, we later had a prayer meeting in our home where we were able to offer up our prayers for the future of these precious ones. Please join us in praying that we will gain access to this orphanage and have volunteers who faithfully communicate Jesus to the children and staff.