Through our 3 ministry programs in Latvia in 2022:
408 children, young adults, and families were served
Alina lived in an orphanage in Jelgava, Latvia, for five years as a teen before moving to Ukraine to live with a family relative who pledged to provide care for her. The relationship proved to be challenging, and after graduating high school, Alina returned to Latvia. Now an adult, she was too old to return to the orphanage, and navigating life back in her home country without a support system was overwhelming.
She struggled to find employment and was in an unsafe living environment. A shy young woman, reticent to trust others, she at first questioned the kindness of the counselor who invited her to be part of the Orphan Outreach Aging Out Program. But she took a chance and started attending Aging Out meetings that provide one-on-one and group support to 17 young adults like Alina in Jelgava, Latvia.
Over time, the consistent counseling and Christ-centered care gave her the confidence to take steps toward an independent adult life. Now Alina is a supervisor at a local store, and lives in an apartment that she has furnished and decorated to reflect her personality. She says her home is cozy and safe, and she is now dreaming about all the future might hold.
More about Latvia Aging Out:
The Aging Out Program provides a support system for those who have aged out of orphanages and the child protective system. Staff offer mentorship, life skills, discipleship, and fellowship and help provide a personalized support system as they transition to independent adult life.
Through our 5 ministry programs in Russia in 2022:
577 children, young adults, and families were served
Olya first learned about the Orphan Outreach Aging Out Program when she was 10, living in an orphanage in St. Petersburg, Russia. The counselors would often visit the orphanage, and they were always encouraging and kind. They would listen to Olya talk about her fears and offer guidanceto her and to the orphanage workers about the best approaches to care.
When she left the orphanage at 18, she officially became part of the Orphan Outreach ministry program for young adults. Olya and other young adults benefit from weekly group Aging Out gatherings and one-on-one in-depth support, whether it’s learning to cook and parent, navigating legal issues, or processing trauma. The loving support, mentorship, and counseling she has received over the years has transformed her life. She has learned to understand the trauma she’s experienced as she’s walked the roadof restoration.
Olya now works as a teacher, is married, and has a daughter. She and her little girl join other moms at parenting classes provided by the Aging Out Program. When the Aging Out Program launched online cooking classes, Olya eagerly tuned in for every lesson. She now adores spending time in the kitchen— trying new recipes, experimenting with flavors, and teaching her little girl how to cook too. Her newfound love of cooking has become a way to show love for others.
More about Russia Aging Out:
The Aging Out Program in St. Petersburg is a support system for those who have aged out of orphanages. The staff facilitates group meetings twice a week and one-on-one support meetings on other days, to provide mentorship, counseling, life skills, and emotional support.
Through our 3 ministry programs in Ukraine in 2022:
3,409 children, young adults, and families were served
Like her friends in the Aging Out Program in Dnipro, Ukraine, Anastasia grew up living in an orphanage. Her mother passed away when she was just a small child, and extended family was unable to provide care for the little girl who saw meaning in everything.
As a young woman navigating life on her own, she appreciated the encouragement and support she received in weekly meetings and in one-on-one time with Zhenya, her program case manager. Her imagination and creative passion continued to grow, and Anastasia discovered she could tell stories through photography. Now, she is using that talent to tell the stories of Eastern Europe as a member of the Orphan Outreach global staff. Anastasia also mentors younger women who have joined the Aging Out Program and has been instrumental in offering compassionate care in the midst of war.
“The war has helped us to understand that every day given to us by God is really a huge blessing. We used to think that we had our whole lives ahead of us, that we had plenty of time and our own ambitions, building relationships with people, helping others, working on ourselves—it could all wait. Now we feel keenly that we don’t have that time, because we’re not responsible for it. Of course, I will be happy if my life turns out to be long and full of both good and bad moments, because whatever happens, it’s all an experience. In the meantime, I will use time as a very precious gift and resource.”
More about Ukraine Aging Out:
The Aging Out Program focuses on personalized care for young adults who have aged out of orphanages in Dnipro. Staff and volunteers provide physical, spiritual, emotional, and educational support to help those young adults make a healthy transition to independent life.
EASTERN EUROPE – CARE IN THE MIDST OF WAR
ON FEBRUARY 24, 2022, RUSSIA INVADED UKRAINE.
Everything changed for the young adults Orphan Outreach serves in both countries.
EVERYTHING CHANGED FOR ORPHAN OUTREACH, TOO.
- Throughout the war, Orphan Outreach has walked with our young adults in the Aging Out Programs throughout Eastern Europe, providing individualized guidance, mentorship, counseling, and prayer. Our staff and young adults stay connected, even as the war has resulted in many young adults relocating to other countries.
- Orphan Outreach has partnered with Maximum Foundation, a community center in Dnipro, serving at-risk families, foster families, and guardianship families by providing food, educational and recreational activities and professional services.
- Orphan Outreach has also partnered with International Leadership Development Center (ILDC) to provide individual counseling, support groups, and training for social service professionals and volunteers addressing the overwhelming trauma that every citizen in Ukraine is facing.
THROUGH IT ALL, THESE THINGS HAVE REMAINED AT THE HEART OF ORPHAN OUTREACH’S CARE:
- We continue to walk alongside 32 young adults in our Aging Out Program in Ukraine, serving them and their families no matter what the circumstances. Our Latvian staff provides care for the 3 Ukrainian women who have relocated to Latvia.
- Our office in Dnipro has served as a safe haven for young adults.
- Our staff’s faith, resolve, resiliency, and commitment to the children and families in Ukraine and across Eastern Europe has not changed.
WHAT DOES CARE LOOK LIKE IN UKRAINE RIGHT NOW?
- 4,718* children, young adults, and families have received care
- 1,027 individuals have been trained as social service professionals
- 1,599 individuals have received counseling and therapeutic intervention
- 11,000 meals have been served
*February 2022 to August 2023