His Kids, Too! Travel Report Summer 2005
It was a joy to visit with friends, church members, orphans, directors, and many others, when the entire Fillmon family traveled to Ukraine for 4 weeks. We arrived safely, and were off by train to Dzerzhinsk. This trip was a combination humanitarian aid work, and conducting Bible camps. Over twenty two Americans descended on Dzerzhinsk in order to provide the love of Christ, and much needed aid. 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 review the Summer 2005 Photo Gallery.
The first 10 days of our trip we visited facilities and then we had the camp. Each day leading up to the camp was filled with the work of the Lord, visiting facilities, clothing children, ministering to presented needs, and teaching and encouraging the saints. We arrived in Dzershinsk greeted by thousands of pounds of aide for the 14 facilities that we are assisting. In just 4 days we distributed over 1000 lbs. of aide to hundreds of children.
The Bible Camp consisted of 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 many gifts, and each day was filled with learning, singing, playing, and praying. We would like to extend special thanks to the Levy Church of Christ, of Little Rock, AR, for paying for all the meals at the Boarding School for the week of camp. The children were fed a morning snack, and a nice lunch (see the photo gallery).
In Dzerzhinsk, His Kids, Too! serves a local orphanage (50 +/- children), Artum Orphan Hospital (25+/- children), the local mental hospital (40 patients), the local Boarding School (school for 450 children, and home to 60+ orphans), a local group of disabled children (35), the Dzerzhinsk Church of Christ (40), and a Christian Church (140). We visited each facility, (many more than once) and aide was given. We are also serving 11 widows with monthly food bags, in addition to helping with the Donetsk feeding program (60 persons).
The Norvgorosk Internat is home to 55 orphans. This is a very poor facility and we have built a good relationship with the director and staff. 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.
In Donetsk, we visited Teremok Orthopedic Hospital (60 +/-), the Aids facility (130 children), Our Children Orphanage (150 +/-) and Internot #1. At 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.
During the Bible camp, children were taught about, respect, honesty, prayer life, and life of Jesus. Evening classes were offered for all, and for the week after adult Bible classes were held. Several ladies classes were offered, studying practical Christian living, Ruth, resolving conflict with others, prayer, being ‘fruitful’ and much more. Attendance was good for these spiritual gatherings.
Donations and Needs: Below is listed the aide that was left at each facility, and their present needs.
Dzerzhinsk Boarding School: 3 sets of clothing per child, 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, sport equipment, medicine, bananas and cookies. This facility hosted the Bible Camp and children were treated to prizes and gifts every day, and each received a Bible.
Needs: personal care bags (a constant need), shoes, 3x ointment, Band-Aids.
Dzerzhinsk Orphanage: 3+ sets of clothing per child, shoes, socks, toothbrushes and paste, large bottles of shampoo, soap, sheets, towels, toys/games, sport equipment, medicine, bananas and cookies. This facility had “Christmas in July” thanks to the students of Raa Middle School, see the Photo Gallery for photos). This facility is where the orphan church meet.
Needs: personal care bags, shoes (constant need)
Artum Baby Hospital: Blankets (thank you South Trail CoC), clothing, toys, busy boxes for cribs, medicine, bananas, cookies, and a special request: electronic blood pressure machine for children and the accompanying stethoscope. Special thanks to Neve and friends for the GREAT TOYS and clothing!
Needs: rubber pants for clothe diapers, diaper ointment.
Teremok Orthopedic Hospital: clothing, medicine (decongestant), bananas, cookies, and toys Needs: funds ($100.00 monthly) to continue juice program
Internot – Donetsk: 200 bottles of decongestant, and continue to supply feminine hygiene products for the girls.
Needs: Funds for feminine hygiene products for 75 girls. Cost $80.00 per month.
‘Our Children’ Orphanage: over 300 lbs.clothing (special thanks to Neve and her friends), blankets (thank you Mary Doederlein and South Trail Church of Christ), socks, busy boxes, and toys. 200 bottles of decongestant. We continue to serve these orphans with the juice and diaper program. Needs: Funds to continue existing programs ($200.00 monthly)
Norvgorosk Internat: 3 sets of clothing per child, socks, personal care bags, toys/games, sport equipment, medicine.
Needs: personal care bags, shoes, clothing, new mattresses ($500.00); computer to process paperwork ($500).
Mental Hospital: clothing for 40 patients, sleepwear for patients, underclothes, and blankets
Needs: funds for food program ($60.00 monthly)
Widows:11 local widows received their monthly food bags. Bags contain: sugar, rice, macaroni, flour, kasha, canned meat, tea, soap, toothbrush/paste and floss, pain reliever tablets, other personal items. Items do vary according to prices. His Kids, Too! has joined in the assistance of feeding 60 poor families in Donetsk. These combined efforts will cost $450.00 monthly to feed 71 people. Needs: Funds for the feeding program.
Home of the Forgotten Children: 350+ children/adults: 4-33 yrs. of age. Over 1000 lb. of new and gently used clothing was distributed. Special thanks to Guy Moore of Garnet and Gold for all the new clothing; personal care products (special thanks to students of Raa Middle School, Maranatha Christian School, Tallahassee Home Schoolers, Central Church of Christ Children's Bible classes and more. Toys for children. (Raa Middle School. Special thanks to Kids Expo, over 500 bottles of decongestant was distributed. Bananas and cookies to all the children and adults.
Needs for 300 + people/children: Funds to purchase mass medicines and syringes ($40.00 per box of 1000), plastic pants and pins as “children lie in their waste”, and Depends, plastic sheeting ($100.00), much needed PRAYER for the director and those in charge of this facility.
Dzerzhinsk Church of Christ (40) and a local Christian Church (140): Both of these wonderful churches were left boxes of new and gently used clothing, and over 100 bottles of decongestant. Needs: at this time, we can fulfill the needs of these 2 churches.
You may have noticed the number of times we took bananas and cookies to children. With an idea from volunteer Kristy Cates, His Kids, Too! has branched out with a new program to supply children with bananas (or seasonal fruit) to the children. Please click on the banana on the homepage to get more information on how we are “Go Bananas for Orphans! ” and how you can help provide fruit for orphans!
This trip also afforded the opportunity to visit the Christian Home we are trying to purchase. The big ‘plus’ at this point, is that the government officials have agreed to GIVE the building to us. The former kindergarten is in need of repairs, but is in a good country location, on the bus and electric train route. We covet your prayers for this transaction to occur soon.
The established cottage industry with many of the ladies in the church is going quite well. The children Ukrainian costumes, some with matching doll outfits available in the His Kids, Too! Gift Shop are selling well. All proceeds will go to these ladies which will give them an income. In addition, more items have been added to the Gift Shop!
This trip was a good one, but a difficult one. Our visit at the home of the Forgotten Children was very difficult, as our little girl Kristina had passed away. The staff at this facility are tender hearted, though the management is difficult, at best. We covet your prayers for a heart of mercy to these children and adults.
We also had the opportunity to pay our respects to our dear friend, translator, sister in Christ, Christina who passed away, at 19, on April 2. In Ukraine, each cemetery plot is surrounded by an iron fence, and it brought a smile to our faces to see hers painted appropriately in pink. Our only comfort is that she is resting in the Savior's arms.
One highlight of the trip was the weekly church services with orphans. Established by Yuri Yenataski in the spring of 2005, members of the local Church of Christ go each Sunday morning and meet with orphans (ages 3-18) and workers at a local orphanage. It was exciting to see the children reading their Bibles and joyfully singing beautiful songs to our Lord and Savior. Each time we saw the children, they would ask, “are you coming Sunday?” The workers too, were happy that we were coming, and eagerly welcomed us. We look forward with eager anticipation as this program grows. If you are interested in helping this program, the cost to provide weekly snacks, and transportation for the church members is $30 monthly.
Upcoming trips: Teresa will return to Ukraine in October, and will visit each of these facilities again; over 1000 lb. 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!
Teresa Fillmon Director/His Kids, Too! www.hiskidstoo.org
His Kids Too, PMB #180, 3491 Thomasville Rd., Tallahassee, FL 32309 (850) 524-5437 www.hiskidstoo.org All Donations are tax deductible