Ukrainian Families Struggle During Lockdown
The Covid-19 virus continues to wind its way through the Ukrainian population. Many families in our Ukraine ministry are suffering, but not necessarily from Covid-19. The effects of isolation, closed schools and a lack of contact with others is a huge burden. This month we highlight two of the families in our sponsorship ministry and ask you to pray.
The Ukrainets family live in a 350 sq ft apartment
Petro and Valya Ukrainets are a new family in the MP sponsorship program. They live in the northwest of Ukraine and now have 8 children including their new baby boy. Our family coordinator in that region, Vera K., visited them just prior to the birth to see how we could help.
“I am glad they are members of a large local church and that the church members help them, but their need is still great,” their family coordinator Vera said.
“I made a video with my phone, because I want you to see their conditions. They are a large loving family but mom is overwhelmed. The grandma was there to help out when I visited. Four of the kids are school-age but they can’t go to school. There is one desk for everyone to do school work and no internet for online lessons. 2-year-old Simeon sleeps in the buggy until the new baby is ready to sleep there.
“The apartment is 350 square feet with two rooms and a small bathroom. They don’t have a balcony to dry clothes, so the church gave them a dryer. But when mom is cooking, the combined heat from the dryer and stove fills the apartment. There is no basement of course to store the potatoes, so everything is stored in the hallway.”
Mom is stressed and children suffer
Vera shared privately that she has family in the USA and would like to try and raise money to buy a small house for the Ukrainets. She said the mother Valya is completely stressed out by their situation. From living in a tiny place, to the coronavirus, and now giving birth to a new baby boy, she has reached her limit. Vera continues her report:
“This lockdown increased the stress level due to everyone staying home. In the video I made, the grandma cries out to God for a bigger apartment. The children join her in this prayer. It is heartbreaking for the father, Petro, as he is disabled and receives a small disability pension. He is a good Christian man but he has multiple health issues.
“Please pray for the mother Valya, the new baby, and if the Lord provides, a new house. Their church is helping them so they will only need around $15,000. I am praying we can all join together and see what the Lord does. Thank you so much!” Vera said.
The Loboda Foster Family
Galyna and Anatoliy Loboda had four sons of their own and four grandchildren when they decided to dedicate their lives to children in need of care and God’s love. In 2006 the parents started taking in children as a foster family. They made it clear that they are Christians and they would be taking the children to church. The kids always come to stay and Galyna is their mother. They are a family.
In 2009 they got Sveta and her younger sister. The next year, however, Sasha was going to be placed in an orphanage when he asked if he could stay in a family instead. Of course, the Loboda’s said yes.
In November 2013, a brother and sister, Artem and Daryna, joined the family. The older kids began attending MP summer camps and loved it.
Death in the Family
In March 2016, their biological son Sergiy died of cancer. Less than two years later, on January 28th, 2018 Galyna’s husband Anatoliy died of a heart attack. The family misses their dad and has been grieving ever since.
They Must Leave Their Home
In the summer of 2020, just 18 months after Anatoliy’s heart attack, Galyna was informed by her church that they must end their foster care support and she and the kids will have to move out. They gave her 12 months.
Galyna shared, “We have a big request to pray about our housing issue. Our “Village of Hope” project informed us that the project is being closed. I have nowhere to go and I desire to keep the family together. Please support us in prayer!”
In closing, our God is faithful. During these stressful times, please do pray for these families who are doing their best to provide a future and a hope for needy children in Ukraine. As Galyna told us, “God has everything under His control!