Orphanage visit

Today four of us from Kyiv drove to Bili Tserkva (about 90 minutes away) to meet up with Greg and Edna Silva, missionaries living in this town. We were scheduled to meet with the director of an orphanage that housed children up to age 5 — including five children confirmed as HIV+ and several others who are waiting for lab results to determine their statuses. (stati?)

We actually met with the director for nearly an hour. Our Ukrainian social worker friend introduced us and gave his stamp of approval as people who have been consistently and faithfully working with HIV+ orphans. The director invited the doctor who works specifically with these children to join us once she realized that Jim is a pediatrician. Much conversation took place about how Jim might be able to assist the staff in providing better care for the children. Specialists, conferences, consultations. Ukraine Medical Outreach is going to be busy!!

I was able to add credibility to the Silvas (like they need it, right?) by explaining my work at the hospital and the months that they faithfully travelled to Kyiv to help me love on the hospitalized orphans. They shared their own vision for ministry within the orphanage, and have been invited to PLEASE come back in the spring or summer when the children will have long days and the staff will welcome extra hands and feet…particularly playing outside.

Greg took some great pictures of the orphanage and blogged about our visit on the Silva’s blog, On Second Thought. Please take the time to read his post and tour the orphanage. And then pray for God’s leading as they develop a plan for working with these children.



  1. Let me know if I can advocate for any of the children there.

  2. Debbie Rist says:

    Hi…just reading a little bit about the Orphanage near Kiev….can you tell me more about it? What are its needs.


  3. It houses children up to age 5…at which point they are moved to a different institution.

    The director voiced the need for money to continue work on the actual buildings and rooms. There is a fence that needs to be finished before they can begin work on a new playground. (We think we may have a team to help with the playground next spring/summer, but FIRST the fence.

    We weren’t there long enough to assess the needs of the children specifically. And none were voiced by the director.

    (Did I answer your questions? If you were looking for something different, please ask again!)

  4. Marianna, Lisa Nunley spoke to me concerning your desire to study Ephesians. We can send it to you via e-mail.
    This is a 24 week study or can be done as you have time.
    Th size of the lessons run from 39-43 kb, so should be able to e-mail them.

    Please let me know how to get them to you. E-MAIL; cd; or hard copy. Will also need an address if by mail.

    We are so excited that you desire to study along with us in this great book. We would also like to know more about you ministry there and how best to pray for you.

    With a grateful heart,
    Mary Boyd

  5. Heather Calise says:

    Saw the need for volunteers for summer…is the need still there? If the need is not for people to go – is there a need for supplies?
    God Bless and Keep you!

    • Heather: Thanks for your interest in this orphanage. The couple who joined us on this particular visit have returned to the States for health reasons, so our connection to the area is no longer there. My understanding was that a specific church might begin a relationship with them. Not sure. But I am willing to look for contact information if you’re still interested.

      There are ALWAYS places looking for volunteers, though strangely the summer is a difficult time. Oftentimes the children are not actually at the orphanage — they are off to other countries or to the Black Sea — for a time of rest. Many camps are held throughout Ukraine, and I would suspect that individual camps might be looking for volunteers. The only way to get involved in any orphanage is through an organization already involved there. Relationships are they key to ministry here.

      We are holding a short camp in a couple of weeks, but I am not sure what your time schedule is. I can write more details to you directly, if you’d like. My particular niche is with HIV+ children…particularly when they are hospitalized. Always looking for supplies — diapers, wipes, etc.

      Let me know if you’d like more information.

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