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2014 Ukraine Trip

Trip to Odessa
September 10-October 2, 2014

Odessa on Peace One Day, September 21, 2014 was a great time to celebrate peace in Ukraine. There may be war going on in Eastern Ukraine, but in Odessa it all was peaceful. I went to a Peace rally and parade in downtown Odessa with friends. We saw so many people, young and old, in traditional Ukrainian costumes.

This was the first time to Odessa since my bout with cancer. It was so wonderful to be back there seeing friends again. There were some changes since I had last been there in April 2012, many new apartments and houses going up, and many things still the same. I had noticed that a few orphanages had closed, like #4, Fontanka, and #9. We were able to go to Lastochka (TB clinic), #5, Shelter #2, and hospitals or clinics - Alexandrovka, Slobodka and Belgorod and Oblast Children’s Hospital. I bought 4 water heaters, or as they call them - boilers, when I was there so kids would have hot water to wash hair, hands, etc. Everyone is worried about heat this winter.

Igor-&-Lynette-and-Boiler

These shoes were for Lastochka where we had also gotten pants, socks, shirts, underwear and shampoo for the 50 kids there.

Lastochka,-new-clothes-008

UAC staff celebrated Peace One day at Shelter #2, Lastochka and Orphanage #5 on September 19, 20 and 21. There was music, poetry and lots of fun for all. Many kids in Ukrainian costumes they had sewn themselves. A lady from Michigan came to spend that weekend with us. Kim de Blecourt spent one night with me at the apartment I stay at. Otherwise I was at the apartment alone, but saw some or all of the staff that works there just about every day.

Peace-One-Day-@-Shelter-2

Bubbles

I was able to spend a bit of time along the beach of the Black Sea. I love the sound of the waves. Belgorod Children’s Hospital is about 2 hours south west of Odessa. We met 3 people from USAid out of Washington D.C. who went with us. Saw a tiny little girl who was a year old but weighed only 5Kg, only about 11 lbs. Also we went to a boy’s psychiatric orphanage. That was hard to go to, but everyone was very friendly.

Beach-&-Shelter-2-Peace-Day

1Yr-old

baby-sleeping-at-Belgorod

boy-psychiatric-orphage


I had taken a suitcase filled with baby clothes as I had heard there were about 20 mothers and their babies from Eastern Ukraine that needed help. While there I bought about 600 diapers, (cost me about $100) which we took with us. These women will have a hard time making it as refugees, but I hoped we helped a bit. There were over 1,000 children that came to Odessa on a train and were put in several orphanages. UAC has been trying to help these kids with clothes and hygiene items. I was able to help with some things and other people have donated items as well.

diapers-for-babies

Mamas-getting-clothes1

It was so wonderful to be back in Odessa again. I spent 3 weeks there and got a lot done and enjoyed myself as well. Universal Aid for Children is doing a fantastic job of helping these kids in Odessa.


Universal Aid for Children (UAC) does such wonderful work there with the children helping so many. We are thankful to be part of such a wonderful organization. To contact them to see how you can help: www.UacUkraineRelief.org

Lynette Belgorod

Read about my previous trips to the Ukraine and learn more about how to help: 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012.

 

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