Today the Nixon team left and I traveled to Uzhgorod, my next work location. I will be here for two weeks and we will do a children’s camp here at the House of Mercy as well as a camp in the gypsy settlement in Uzhgorod. I enjoyed a beautiful ride to this town, right through the Trans-Carpathian region, and very near where we had camp last year. It was so gorgeous! Once we arrived in Uzhgorod, we were fed Borscht (yum!) and then I went with some of the teenage girls here to a youth meeting at church. There is Anette,19, from Norway—her mother is the president of the Norwegian organization that supports House of Mercy (HOM). Lera, 18, will be one of our translators. There were two other girls who live here, Tanya, 17, and Oksana, 16, who also came with us. Once we came back and got settled, we waited for the arrival of the Canadian team I will be working with. Vasya showed me around HOM; there are about 20 kids living here now. Some are orphans, and the rest have parents but have been removed from those homes because of terrible living conditions, or because they were given up by their parents. One boy was living in a dark shed with his brother and fed by the neighborhood because his mother didn’t care for them. He was brought to HOM after his brother finally died, and is severely underdeveloped and still recovering from those conditions. He appears to have scoliosis, and has a little more difficulty in movement than other kids. It is such an awesome thing that HOM is here and that these kids are provided a home to live until they find a permanent home. The facilities are so nice and the kids are so loved here; once a child finds a home there is room for more kids.
When the Canadian team arrived, we had some dinner and everyone was so tired we soon went to bed. So far, I love it here. I am looking forward very much to find out what is in store here for everyone involved. Excited about the next two weeks!
|Scenery on the way to Uzhgorod|