OH Ukraine Update – Changes Due to War

Because the situation in Ukraine with the war, Orphans Hope has for the first time temporarily expanded our scope beyond just helping orphans to also include relief efforts to care for the people suffering and fleeing from the fighting.

The war in has caused great challenges and suffering within the country. In the midst of this we have assisted with evacuation, food, and humanitarian assistance to orphanages and people fleeing the war.  In 2022 we served also 129 orphans from 5 orphanages, foster families, and graduates from orphanages. We held IT classes for young people in Kiev region and counseling for vulnerable teens and families at risk. We also provided mentoring and life skills classes for two groups of teens.

Orphan’s Hope Ukraine is usually working with orphans in government orphanages, bringing love and working to give them a future with hope. These children have a tremendous vacuum, missing the love and care of a family. Our focus is currently on orphanages located in the Kiev region. Typically about 20% are orphans whose parents died and 80% of the children are social orphans. Social orphans come from abandonment, abuse, and violence, with parents who were drug addicts or alcoholics. The stories are tragic and the children are beautiful.

We have had a great ministry to orphans in Ukraine for over twenty years. Things have been changing however for us as more children have been able to go into foster care and adoption. The positive is that more kids are living in families with more personal care and attention. We have been a big encourager of this, especially among churches. Although orphanages are fewer and smaller, there are still a lot of children in orphanages.  Orphan’s Hope continues to be a light for kids in the orphanages who haven’t been able to be taken into a home.

There are 750 orphanages all over Ukraine with about 10,000 orphans leaving the orphanages every year.

If only you could see how beautiful and normal these kids are in so many ways, the impact of loss beyond their control, and the power we have to make a real difference for them. The more time you spend with them, the more you love them and have compassion for them.

The cost to the life of an orphan in orphanages is hard to grasp unless you experience it firsthand and realize the needs of the children. You can start to appreciate the depth of their needs, the hurt, and feelings of despair, when you understand that an estimated 10% of these children commit suicide after leaving the orphanage, many the girls get pulled into prostitution, and many of the boys into crime.

Showers for some children come once a week, and all they have in the world could fit in a small drawer. People who should protect you commonly steal what is given to help you. Add to this loneliness, a sense of rejection, abuse, and the lack of adults with much time for you or to be a model in the normal things of life. Most of all they need love and caring families if possible. Families are the very best place for them but for many who have no opportunity for a family Orphan’s Hope is shining God’s love and light into their lives.

You can see the tip of the iceberg in the young teenagers who are pushed into the world, unprepared for life and often hurting. They often don’t know how to do basic things like tell time, cook, shop, budget, bank etc.. Without love, real help, and the light of Christ in their lives, they become tragic statistics ravaged by the corruption of the world and sin. We have seen how we can make a real difference together, and are giving our lives to love these children. Can you help us?

The purpose of Orphan’s Hope Ukraine is to give these children real hope and a better life. During the years we have been working with these children we have seen some excellent results, in the face of the many challenges.

  • Our staff are working in the orphanages loving the children, mentoring, providing humanitarian assistance, tutoring, counseling, offering camps, special programs, and more.
  • We have one home in Crimea (previously Ukraine) where a family has taken in five children from the orphanages and have been doing a great job in raising these kids.
  • We also teach practical life skills and character development in the orphanage.
  • OH computers classes have helped develop children intellectually, as well as give practical skills.
  • OH summer camps have been a highlight of the year for many orphans, which God uses in wonderful ways to help them grow.
  • OH staff build close, one-on-one mentoring relationships with children. These relationships allow us to meet both basic and deeper needs, and better prepare them to have a successful life as those who love God and please Him.
  • Orphan’s Hope has a great smaller team now, working in the Ukraine with a passion to see these beautiful children’s lives saved from tragic ends. Thank you for your interest and support for our ministry.