Saturday, January 26, 2013

MAKING DECISIONS CAN BE DIFFICULT - BUT LET'S ALL DECIDE - NOT TO BE ORDINARY!

This is an unusual post.  We have been getting frequent updates from Kyrgyzstan and Ukraine on what is happening and we want to update you and as well let you know what is next for the LAMb Team.

FIRST AND MOST IMPORTANT...OUR DAYSPRING CHILDREN...UPDATE




We now have eight little girls at Dayspring.  Two little girls, Isulu and Kumishi moved in just after we left in January. These little girls are from a family that our team has been working with for many years.  We were sad to see they were struggling living under the care of their older sister and brother, but so grateful that we could step in and help when we were needed.  They are doing well.  The two brother are living at Jeremiah House, along with Omerbeck.

But yesterday we had another sad day when our little Yulia returned to us from her mother.  Our team had worked very hard with the mother and when Social Services gave us the okay to return her to mom, we all were thrilled.  Costa and Olga have been in touch with her frequently and have been a great support to the family and the reunification.  Yet, sometimes the grasp of an addiction is more than one can manage.  New husband, pregnant, little baby in arms, and expectations from extended family.  Somehow mom could not remain free - and fell deep back into some of her previous ways.  Costa and Olga worked with her - days went by, and she would be okay one day and then really captive of the addiction for more days.  Finally, it erupted and she was homeless with no place to go and Social Services once again said that she could not parent her children.  Yulia was returned to us and the baby was placed elsewhere.  Our hearts are so sad.

She is crying for help and we cannot abandon her - she is the mother of our little girl and she too is a child of God.  Our team found a private treatment program in Bishkek - expensive.  There are no services otherwise for her.  What to do?  Our hearts cry - is she ready?  Will she commit?  Where will she go if not into treatment?  Where will the funds come from?

We shall never underestimate the power of the Holy Spirit.  The funds surfaced without asking - the treatment can be started and now our job is to pray, and to love her for her, encourage her and be there for her.  Our hope has not stopped - we still believe it is possible that she could parent her children.  Each day will be closer to that day.  Please join our prayer team and believe in a miracle in her healing of this stronghold in her life.  Yulia needs her.

If all goes well, we she will enter treatment tomorrow.

NOW.. MORE TO LET YOU KNOW ABOUT....

1.  Ruby just returned from Ukraine with lots of stories of how things were progressing there - how our team is really taking ownership of their vision, goals and objectives.  Things are really happening there and it is so close in the vision to really see UKRAINE WITHOUT ORPHANS.

2.  In just a few days, Pastor David and Jayne will be heading over to Ukraine to do a number of things.  They will be teaching a workshop at a Pastors Summit - focused on the orphan crisis around the world.  Over 500 pastors will be gathering from around the world to learn and share.  In addition, they will be teaching other persons who work with vulnerable children - teaching them about the needed specific focused interventions needed for children who have experienced trauma in their little lives.

3.  Ruby had the opportunity to share about the Jeremiah Project with the sponsoring church from Ohio on Tuesday night.  The evening was a wonderful time of fellowship and sharing - and even answering questions for the team that will be going over to Kyrgyzstan in March from the church - to serve and help in the Jeremiah House (which they purchased) and in some of the other LAMb projects.  We are so excited about this team and our new partnership with the church.

4.  John and Julie will be heading over to Kyrgyzstan in March -  just in time to host the team from Ohio, leading to areas where they can bless others and help in serving and ministering.  John and Julie are LAMb's primary humanitarian service team.  God has put them in the "trenches" with many and we are honored to have them on our team.

5.  Lynn will be heading to Ukraine early March where he will be teaching at a Pastors/church leaders conference in southeast Ukraine.  Costa will join him for this time of ministry.  In addition he will be doing leadership training in Kiev for our leadership series started last week by Ruby and the ILDC team.

6.  Ruby will head to Ukraine mid-March and conduct training before heading on to Kyrgyzstan to support the KG team and work with Jeremiah Project, Dayspring and Discovery Project.  Lynn and Costa will follow at the end of the month and they will return from KG by the end of April.

7.  Pastor Glen Pitts will be heading over to Nicaragua in February and has initiated two additional program for Nicaragua - Enrich (a nutrition program) and New Images (a project to help those who have been enslaved in the sex trade)  In addition, hundreds of books have been distributed for children to learn Bible verses...and hundreds of solar players - that have the entire Bible on them along with messages from Charles Stanley.

8.  Nicaragua is the primary focus of Pastor Glen, with a secondary focus of El Salvador...watch for updates on all of this.

DID YOU KNOW.....

a)  LAMb was registered in Canada as a charity in 2009?  but has been working in Ukraine since 2003 and in Kyrgyzstan since 2005 and in Nicaragua since 2011?
b)  That there are four founders for LAMb?  Don and Johanna Buchman, Lynn and Ruby Johnston
c)  Mapleview Community Church in Barrie, Ontario is the covering for LAMb Canada.
d)  LAMb has five additional team members - Pastor Glen Pitts, Julie and John Wright along with Pastor David and Jayne Schooler.
e)  LAMb is very involved with WORLD WITHOUT ORPHANS, UKRANE WITHOUT ORPHANS, RUSSIA WITHOUT ORPHANS, KYRGYZSTAN WITHOUT ORPHANS, KAZAKHSTAN WITHOUT ORPHANS AND yes just anywhere there are orphans....

....IN THE WORLD

AND
YOU CAN BE PART OF THE TEAM
JUST MAKE A DECISION..

"I WILL NOT BE ORDINARY"




Monday, January 21, 2013

UKRAINE - JUST A REMINDER WHY WE PUBLISHES BOOKS


A WORLD WITHOUT ORPHANS
ONE FAMILY AT A TIME

When asked why publish books - we go to the personal stories of those who have been helped and there are many.  Here is a story told to our staff in Ukraine.  

Elena was given one of the recent our recent publications, Wounded Children Healing Homes, by Jayne Schooler and Betsy Keefer.  We had this book translated into Russian and published in Ukraine and have distributed it in Ukraine, Kyrgyzstan, Russia and even Kazakhastan.

This story tells it all - Elena sent this to us:



My name is Elena Novikova, I live in Ukraine. I am 54 years. I am a trained psychologist, since 2006 an adoptive parent.
In March of 2012, I went through an adoption crisis. But I realized it only after reading “Wounded Children Healing Homes” book.

In 2006 we have adopted a little girl. She was four and half years old. 20 days later we also adopted a boy. Both of them had obvious attachment disorders, less with the boy, he caused almost no problems. But the girl, as it appeared later had serious attachment disorders. She always wanted to get away from us, boycotted any house work, never cleaned up after herself, did not want to do her school home work and all she wanted to do was to go out and hang out on the street. Her close friends including my husband and I, got stolen money and were lied to all the time. She was stealing from the pockets of jackets in school locker room. She had no moral ethics and did whatever she wanted. I had to change five schools because of her behavior, and she continues stealing. In January of 2012 it got worse. She kept  stealing and lying and then insisted to leave our family and go to another one. I took her hand and brought to a social service agency to the inspector, then was she sent to a government shelter  to wait until I could apply for adoption disruption. We could see how our adopted son was suffering too. He was a good student, tried to help and when our adopted daughter offered to him to leave our family too, he refused and told her that he likes our family and he is happy here. 

A week after I took our daughter to a government shelter, I started to doubt whether I was right with what I did. Before that, I visited psychologists and doctors, to find out what I was doing wrong with our child, and why there was so much tension between us. No one could really tell us or write a diagnosis of mental retardation or physical disorder of the central nervous system.

I could see a lot of controversy in what was happening  plus I could feel like my physical strength was leaving me. One day, I came across the book "Wounded Children Healing Homes” which describes how traumatized children affect foster and adoptive families. I began to read every single line eagerly, and finally I found answers to all the dead-end questions that nobody else could answer before. I realized that the crisis of adoption is OK an expected thing, and I have to work on it instead of applying for adoption disruption. I began to understand my daughter’s behavior and myself. This information was exactly what I was looking for. Where else I could find out about what is happening with adoptive families in situations like mine and why adoptive families begin to treat their children bad though like never attend to do it?  I finally relaxed and all things fell into places. I let my daughter be herself and tried not to look at her through her character and realized I could not do anything to change it. I began to look at her as someone that has psychological traumas. With that confidence I went to Children Service and asked them to return my child. It was not easy, because Children Servcice has already held a meeting where they made decision that could not be a candidate for adoption of this girl again. Based on the facts and  I read and studied that were described in the book, I was able to prove that my family had been going through a crisis of adoption and  instead of adoption disruption and separation both my daughter and I need to be helped. I was heard, and I took the girl back from the shelter where she was already getting familiar with new candidate families.




I thank the authors of this book, and whoever was involved in helping to publish it and I wish them a long and fruitful life. May God bless you, you are doing amazing work!

Saturday, January 19, 2013

LEADERSHIP TRAINING - BRINGING THE BEST OUT OF THE BEST!


LEADERSHIP TRAINING FOR 19 PARTICIPANTS

It is exciting to see the results of ILDC in Ukraine - we are looking at over 200 training days for the fiscal year!  That is awesome.  

  • In addition, we have distributed almost 1,000 books of Wounded Children Healing Homes
  • Distributed almost 1,000 books of Telling the Truth to Your Foster or Adoptive Child
  • Complete the requirements of our grant from the German Embassy
  • Developed and published a booklet on Child Sexual Abuse
  • Developed trainers in the area of Child Sexual Abuse, Trauma and several other parenting topics
  • Conducted and partnered with several conferences
  • Helped over 50 families who have adopted and needed help with issues around parenting
  • Worked with many crisis families to ensure they are supported and encouraged to work on keeping their family together
  • AND SO MUCH MORE....


Leadership here working on how you can cast a vision and demonstrate leadership.



Notice the professional materials made available for the participants in the training.
We are so thankful to our sponsors for caring about this and ensuring we can honor our participants with quality materials and conditions.


Leadership took the training very seriously.


And were intense when learning.


Building new partnerships and relationships between the different NGO's and government offices.


A little lecture on being Intentional, Focused with our Interventions...
just a little leadership content to help participants understand being strategic in
all they do.


And of course there is always time for a little laughter and fun!

 SOON TO BE OUR LEADERSHIP TRAINERS...


Vika (ILDC staff project manager with Adopt Ukraine;) Lena (independent trainer for ILDC); Luba (contract trainer - works with gov't agency); Vika (Children's Center staff - contract trainer); Lena (independent trainer for ILDC)

And if our organization is to be strategic
WE MUST DEVELOP TRAINERS

OUR NEW TRAINERS FOR LEADERSHIP
THEY ARE MENTORING IN AND WILL BE COACHED 
AND TAKE OVER THIS SERIES IN THE FUTURE!

NATIONALS TRAINING NATIONALS

Thursday, January 17, 2013

SO MUCH TO DO - SO LITTLE TIME


JEREMIAH HOUSE - HAS THREE RESIDENTS - THREE YOUNG BOYS


HOMEWORK TIME 
Gulnara said to the boys - "if you get bad grades because of NOT doing your homework, no pies in the evening."  Well, they love her pies - so here they are doing homework.  Maybe not happy about it, but certainly happy about the pies!


A LITTLE VIEW FOR YOU


THE BEDS HAVE NOT BEEN MADE YET
We ordered bunk beds for the rooms, but they are not yet done.  However, children needed to live here and they found an answer - let's borrow beds for the time being and we will put the bunks in later.  Worked, three boys in residence:  Omerbeck, Alenbeck and Aziz.

PEOPLE WANTED TO KNOW WHAT WE DID THERE RECENTLY - SO WE MADE A LITTLE LIST. 

We were just too tired to remember the rest.

Oh and in the process we both had the flu.  So, when you look this over remember who is the provider and sustainer!  Our Heavenly Father gets ALL THE CREDIT.  We just showed up and stopped for what needed to be done at the moment.


  • Bought Jeremiah House
  • Purchased rugs for home and had them delivered
  • Ordered bunk beds for Jeremiah House and Jeremiah Drop in Center
  • Purchased JH kitchen appliances and arranged for delivery
  • Selected living room furniture and Mentor Mom staff furniture for JH and had it delivered
  • Designed kitchen for JH, met with cupboard makers and ordered cabinets
  • Over saw the installation of the kitchen
  • Coordinated plumbing for kitchen and washer in bathroom
  • Purchased all kitchen items, pans, dishes,  etc and took them to JH
  • Purchased all bed linens, towels, sweeper, etc for JH
  • Purchased a washer and arranged for delivery at JeremiahDrop in Center
  • Coordinated repairs for Jeremiah Drop in Center
  • Coordinated electrical box changed at Jeremiah Drop in Center
  • Coordinated a new water system for Jeremiah House, including drilling a new well
  • Interviewed potential candidate for Jeremiah House, hired staff
  • Interviewed and hired new person for replacing present staff - a new Child Advocate
  • Visited Kemin Senior Center, taking food, slippers and Dayspring children with gifts
  • Had a big Christmas dinner with about 30 of our helpers and team members at Dayspring
  • Participated in joint Christmas party with Beikut children and Dayspring children, including two children from Red River orphanage
  • Celebrated New Years Eve with Dayspring family
  • Conducted two staff meetings
  • Dedicated Jeremiah House - all staff included
  • Dedicated Jeremiah Drop in Center - all staff included
  • Delivered food boxes to seniors and crisis families
  • Purchased coal for needy family
  • Conducted special giving to children who are being sponsored
  • Spent time visiting Kemin seniors with Dayspring family doing some performance
  • Took 22 adults and children to Bishkek to see the Nutcracker
  • Meeting and hosting for a weekend of two women from Kazakhastan to learn more about Jeremiah Project
  • Meeting with two individuals from Bishkek who are planning to start transition home for graduating orphanage youth - they wanted to learn about Jeremiah Project
  • Meeting with a psychiatrist from Bishkek who wants to start an apprentice program for graduating orphanage youth - wanted to learn about Jeremiah Project
  • Started the plans and scheduling for the spring training with SOS villages and others
  • Started planning for a 2013 conference for Kyrgyzstan Without Orphans
  • Visited Jessica's family and delivered food for Christmas
  • Developed agreement for mayors office concerning Jeremiah Project
  • We both Fought the battle with the flu and our Heavenly Father WON
  • Visited Hymanot and family in their home for a meal
  • Enjoyed an evening with team members and helpers for a nice dinner together
  • Coaching with staff about crisis issues with families of our Dayspring children

NEXT POST - RUBY IS IN UKRAINE DOING TRAINING AND WE WILL POST AN UPDATE ON THAT TOMORROW.

BE BLESSED AND DON'T BE ORDINARY!

Friday, January 11, 2013

JEREMIAH - FROM PURCHASE TO A HOME

video

JOIN US IN THE JOURNEY

JEREMIAH HOUSE
Tokmok, Kyrgyzstan

We want to thank Parkside Christian Church 
for 
making this a reality
for youth graduating out of the orphanages.
Working together to make a difference!

THANK YOU

Music by:  Andrea Bocelli - "I Believe"




Wednesday, January 9, 2013

OH WHAT A DAY - DEDICATION OF THE JEREMIAH PROJECT


WONDERFUL DAY

The Jeremiah Project was dedicated today at the beginning of our staff meeting.
We first met at Jeremiah House and prayed for God's blessing to pour out on the children who will be coming to live in the home.

Dedicated to the kindness of the ParkSide Church.

Then we traveled over the Jeremiah Drop-In Center to dedicate the center.  Our center is dedicated to a young man who demonstrated dreams, hopes and a desire to serve.  A young man that honored his parents and had dreams of working in ministry.  

Matthew Shelton was just a teenager when he lost his life in a car accident.

The team gathered for this dedication in the center.

We will be posting a video of the dedication once we get back to a better internet connection.  We tried to post it here, but it was too large of a file to upload.  We will share this with you once we return to North America.




Our KYRGYZSTAN STAFF!

JEREMIAH PROJECT 
IS OFFICIALLY 
OPEN!

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

SAYING GOOD BYE, CELEBRATING, AND COMPLETING PROJECTS


LEAVING AND SAYING GOOD BYE

Today we had the wonderful pleasure of having brunch with Hymonot, Denara and the children....getting to meet Samuel for the first time.  What an adorable little 3 month old little guy. 


Hymanot and Denara are a very special couple to us.  Hymanot has served us for many years in various ways - driving our Dayspring children to school, being our friend, interpreter and often just serving by helping us as needed.  


Just one more picture of Samuel because I have so  many and cannot resist.


JEREMIAH HOUSE UPDATE TODAY

STAFF MOVED IN TODAY!
AND..
Well, we had to make some major changes today to JH.  We had to drill a new water well - 10 meters down.  They put this well under the house - can you imagine drilling a 10 meter well under the house?  Well they did and in the process got our very dry area under the house turned into a like.  This is where they were going to put the NEW water pump.  Their comment when asked about the lake?  "Don't worry it will go into the ground soon." 

OKAY THIS IS KYRGYZSTAN AND THEY DO THINGS A LITTLE DIFFERENT HERE AND WE WILL TRY NOT TO BE ETHNOCENTRIC.


VISITORS FROM BISHKEK

Later in the afternoon we had two visitors from Bishkek.  Victoria and Anton came to Tokmok to see and hear about Jeremiah Project and Dayspring Project.  We gave them the tour and came back to our apartment to hear their dream.  SO VERY EXCITING.  Anton is completing University in Lithuania and wants to start a transition program for graduating youth in Bishkek.  We talked and talked and clearly could see how his work and the work of LAMb could fit together for the youth we have that might want to go into Bishkek and learn and/or work.  

We gave them lots of translated reading - materials we use in our work and have translated with our partners.  Life Skills, Field Guide to Child Welfare, Wounded Children Healing Homes, and Telling the Truth.  They were so excited to get these resources - just spreading the word a little more.  

And think about this.....another team that really "gets it."  Anton said, "we can't just go into the orphanages and see kids, we need to provide some help for them and I believe we can get businesses to help kids learn and grow."  Anton and Victoria are committed to this.

HEY!  REMEMBER WE BELIEVE
KYRYGZSTAN WITHOUT ORPHANS


We were so excited to end our day with 21 different friends.  We sat and said good bye - joined together for a meal and were once again reminded that we are a team. ...working for the good of the ones in need.


We laughed, played games and ate.


And of course took that final picture....

ON A MORE SOMBER NOTE

We have a meeting scheduled tomorrow after our staff meeting.  A family our team has worked with for some time is in deep trouble.  We were notified by the school of the children doing very poorly, missing lots of school and concerns they might not be getting any supervision or support from adults.  The school went to their apartment and it appeared there was no one living there.
Tomorrow we will make some critical decisions as we have asked several of our team to join us for a discussion of possibilities.




Monday, January 7, 2013

WORKING WITH FAMILIES - FEELING THEIR PAIN


A DAYSPRING STORY

Dayspring Family Life Resource Center in Tokmok, Kyrgyzstan is committed to helping families stay together where possible and help children get back home if they have had to leave their families for some reason that can be reversed.  Anya's mother and father want their family back together.  Anya lives in the family at Dayspring, while her three brothers are in an orphanage near by.  The children spend time together, but do not live together.

Mom has been working hard to make the necessary changes to get her children home.  However, she is  expecting another child - which is due in about three weeks.  She has had to quit her job until after she delivers the baby.  She is the lone supporter of the family, as the father has a serious health condition.  The parents have made many improvements in their home - hoping to get their children home.

TEACHING CHILDREN ABOUT SERVING

This Christmas, the children of Dayspring received nice gifts from their sponsors, from others who wanted to bless them.  During the season of giving  -  we talked with the children about the importance of serving others as well.  We offered them some suggestions and they together choose to give gifts from their own funds to two different places - Kemin Senior Home and Anya's mom.  What an amazing giving time - they all know Anya's mom and dad are working hard to get her home - and they know improvements are needed in the home for this to happen.  The girls pooled their funds and bought a dresser - the only one in the house - so that mom could put clothing in the dresser and not keep clothing on the floor.

The family does not have water in the house -  mom is very concerned about this with the children coming home some day.  Putting water in would just require tapping into the city water and putting in a drain to the outhouse.  Yet, this is an impossible thing for them to do.  If the children are to go home some day - this will need to be done.

The mother trusts Olga, LAMb's Residential Director - in fact she calls her for advice and has built a trusting relationship with her.  Olga feels pain for her - cries for her well-being through this pregnancy and soon to be delivery.  Olga knows she does not have a way to know when she goes to the hospital unless someone else calls her.  The mother will need to stay there for at least three days - she will have no food unless someone brings some to her.  We want to do that - but need to know when she goes to the hospital. Olga is working on a plan to get this information.   Anya's mother is 41 years old, not very strong and as we mentioned before - the only provider for the family.

WHAT TO DO?

Anya's mother is a believer and says she knows God will care for her and carry her through these difficult times.

YES
 HE WILL

AND WE MUST STOP FOR THE ONE IN FRONT OF US

ANYA'S FAMILY

BECAUSE WE BELIEVE

ONE CHILD

ONE FAMILY

AT A 
TIME

FOR

KYRGYZSTAN WITHOUT ORPHANS


ANYA DELIVERING THE DRESSER TO MOM AND DAD!



FAMILY HAS BEEN RENOVATING AS THEY CAN


ANYA'S BROTHER WHO LIVES WITH MOM AND DAD


COSTA AND ANYA'S BROTHER IN THE KITCHEN

ANYA AND HER MOTHER IN THEIR RENOVATED HALL WAY

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