Ministry News

Elevate Scholar Update!

Elevate Scholar Update!

December 04, 2019

How is school going?  That’s a great question and one that I am asked frequently since I left Shpola orphanage school and started high school at Sophia School as an Elevate Scholar. Well, by nature I am very lazy, and I got used to doing very little schoolwork at the orphan school. Even though I was the top pupil in my class, I realize now that I have huge gaps in my education and there are many subjects I need to catch up on. Now, I am a senior at Sophia  School, and even though the dear principal Natalia tries to motivate me, I have not had much success. So, I decided that I can’t do this on my own, and I prayed about it and today I received an answer. 

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Who cares about Care Givers?

Who cares about Care Givers?

November 15, 2019

We do. They look after 180 orphans who have experienced trauma throughout their short lives.  The job is tough, with odd hours and low pay. These are the adults that supervise the kids in the orphanage before and after school hours.  They are essentially raising the kids, and we minister to them too. 

On Saturday, as a part of our Christian Ed program “Wake Up” I prepared a Master Class and Devotion just for the Care Givers.  We do this for children of course, but not usually for the Care Givers. They were surprised; well, shocked really. 

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Motherhood is bittersweet

Motherhood is bittersweet

September 01, 2019

Moms are allowed to cry when they send their kids off to college.  I did, that’s for sure. Yes, several years ago, I helped get my son and daughter get settled into their dorm rooms.  I scrubbed the tub, made their beds, put everything in its place and generally fussed over them. It’s a bittersweet time to be savored.  Well, more sweet than bitter actually. I loved it.
I didn’t think it would happen again, but yesterday it did – in Ukraine ...

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Julie almost lands herself in a Ukrainian jail!

Julie almost lands herself in a Ukrainian jail!

July 04, 2019

Here I am on the airplane from Amsterdam heading home to Atlanta, and I want to write down a little memory of camp before I forget it.  It’s so hard to think of individual moments because the entire week at Kompas Park was momentous.

I remember it was my team’s time to go to the beach.  When we got down to the river, I was asked if I knew how to kayak.  Sure! Two of the girls, Larissa, and Marina and I, went out in the kayak...

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A piece of my heart remains in Ukraine

A piece of my heart remains in Ukraine

June 26, 2019

When I think about my time as a volunteer at Kompas Park camp, it is very difficult to narrow my thoughts to one event that would describe my experience. I could have never expected the connection I would make with each of the children in my group in such a short period of time as well as the impact we would make as a group. 

The most poignant moment to me occurred on Wednesday evening as the boys in my group were preparing for bed...

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Charlie comes back for more at Kompas Park!

Charlie comes back for more at Kompas Park!

June 20, 2019

Volunteering at Kompas Park has yielded two of the most eye opening and life changing summers of my life.  When Cyndee Knight brings a team of Americans to Ukraine with her, our job is not to show the kids the gospel and love of Jesus through our words, but through our actions.  So even though I could barely communicate with these children, I was able to form bonds with them that could only be brought about by God's grace and love. 

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Remembering God’s Perfect Love in a World of Broken Love

Remembering God’s Perfect Love in a World of Broken Love

February 13, 2019

As Valentine’s Day draws near, our grocery stores, social media feeds, and homes are filled with pink and red. Flowers, heart-shaped chocolates, cards with cute puppies, and love songs fill our senses. Discussions on love surround us and some of our favorite romantic movie quotes come to mind – “You have bewitched me, body and soul, and I love you” (Pride and Prejudice, anyone??). In the midst of all this, how do we think about love in light of what John says in the verse above – God IS love?

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What are You Doing this Summer?

What are You Doing this Summer?

January 18, 2019

The New Year is well underway, and we are excited for all that 2019 has in store! Time after time, our Kompas Park Summer Camps are the highlight of our year, and many campers and volunteer counselors would agree. This year Hope Now USA will be offering volunteers the opportunity to serve at two camps – Kids Camp from May 30 to June 8 and Youth Camp from June 27 to July 6.  This year, our exciting theme is SPACE! We invite you to come aboard our spaceship as we take a galactical journey to explore God’s love this summer.

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Elevate Scholarship: First Semester at Sophia School is Almost Complete!

Elevate Scholarship: First Semester at Sophia School is Almost Complete!

December 18, 2018

Joy to the World! Over the past several months, God has brought an exciting partnership and program to Hope Now – the Elevate Scholarship. This scholarship allows orphan graduates to finish their high school education in a Christian school in Cherkasy while living with Christian host families. If this is your first time hearing about the scholarship, please read more about it on our recent blog post, Elevate Scholarship Gives Hope.

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Giving Thanks for 2018

Giving Thanks for 2018

November 20, 2018

What are your favorite Thanksgiving traditions? Which sounds, tastes, sights and smells of Thanksgiving do you treasure most? Many families, including mine, spend time circling the table sharing stories of thankfulness with each other. As we draw near to this cherished holiday, let’s go around our “table” and reminisce about what we are truly grateful for.

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#MyGivingStory: How my Pulled Heartstrings Led to Sponsorship

#MyGivingStory: How my Pulled Heartstrings Led to Sponsorship

November 15, 2018

With his head bent low and hands in the pockets of the suit he wore earlier in the day for his graduation from school at Shpola Orphanage, Vlad contemplatively walked up and down along the tall grass in the woods away from the celebratory bonfire and smores everyone else was enjoying.  The sight of him pulled at my heartstrings.  Was he thinking, "This is the only place I have been provided for and felt safe.  What now?"  Did he feel frightened and forsaken?

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Give Hope this Holiday Season

Give Hope this Holiday Season

November 06, 2018

As temperatures drop and the year draws to a close, there are many reasons for hope. We look forward to holidays with loved ones and cozy evenings by the fire. The nostalgic tastes and smells of fall leading into winter cause us to look to the past in thankfulness and to the coming new year with hope. This time of year is often the busiest as we scurry between work deadlines, family gatherings and holiday parties. Thanksgiving leads into the demands of Black Friday, Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday with Christmas coming right around the corner.

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