"One Church - One Child" Project in Ukraine
The objective of the One Church - One Child project in Ukraine is to support and encourage individual churches in the country to take responsibility for the betterment of one orphan in their community.
The main problem of orphans and children deprived of parental care is their loneliness and lack of responsible and capable adults in their lives - lack of a family.
The consequences of orphans' loneliness are physical, psychological, and spiritual problems, which a child cannot overcome on his own.
The reasons for loneliness of orphans, especially older and disabled are:
- low level of social consciousness of Ukrainian society;
- failure of State child protection system to ensure quality of life of orphans;
- NGOs and government agencies cannot attract enough potential adoptive parents and mentors to help this category of children;
- Christian churches are not serving this community enough.
Obviously, a conscious and mobilized Christian community can positively affect the entire complex of problems of orphans, because:
- The church can meet all the needs of the child: physical, psychological, and spiritual;
- Christians are the most conscious and motivated section of society;
- In most cases, believers have strong, healthy families and a moral life;
- Christian churches have enough resources to serve children.
In Ukraine, there are 35,460 Christian churches (of which 10 613 are Protestant.) At the same time, about 7,000 orphaned children are in need of adoption. If most local churches would take responsibility for one child and serve them, there will no longer be orphans in Ukraine..
Objectives of the project
- Promote that the whole church would regularly pray for the needs of an orphan at least once a month. Prayer does not only improve a child's life, but also involves Christians in more deeply serving orphans.
- Motivate caring mature believers to regularly communicate and spend time with a child.
- Motivate Christians to preach the Word of God to orphans with good deeds and the Word for their salvation.
- Promote that every church get involved in the project and take care of a specific orphan, recognize their basic needs and find a way to meet those needs.
- Teach and motivate Christians to adopt orphans, make foster families or to become mentors. Ensure appropriate training, preparation, counseling and support.
- Involve all the churches in Ukraine in serving orphans.
Story of Adoption from Ukraine
Olya’s story of adoption and the impact of the "One Church - One Child" program
“Olga’s life story is very inspiring, and it demonstrates the positive impact churches can have on behalf of children who have no voice.”
Olga’s mother was pregnant with twins; but there were complications during childbirth. The baby suffered a birth trauma; and, as a result, she had a severe form of mental disability. Her mother abandoned her in the maternity hospital, citing the reason for leaving was that she did not have the means to support a sick or disabled child. So, the young infant was sent into the orphanage boarding system.
Olya was only able to eat through a feeding tube until she was five years old; however, over these years she learned to insert it and eat all on her own. She held her pain deeply; and, as she was unable to speak, she silently cried. Only in her appearance could one understand what her mood was.
There was something so special about Olya. In spite of her pain and limitations, she had a great desire to live. Noticeably she became increasingly active and very inquisitive. The desire to engage in life was evident; and, at six years old she learned to crawl. The teachers at the boarding school were very happy with Olya’s progress and at seven years old she started eating without a feeding tube. She enjoys preening and takes care to keep herself looking good and clean.
For a long time, the team at Ukraine Without Orphans looked for a family to adopt Olya. For three years two churches prayed specifically for her to be adopted. Thank God, these prayers were heard! Olga was adopted when she was nine years old by a Ukrainian family who lives in America. The adoptive parents have five biological children in addition to Olya. Their youngest daughter has cerebral palsy. After her adoption, Olga began to walk and gained a healthier weight. Now Olya has caring, loving parents and is growing in family.