Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Now that you have had a tiny glimpse in to village life...I will tell you a story from our first day at Providence Home for Orphans in Cupcui.  Providence Home was a previously state run orphanage that PCM is now running.  (Remember they turned it around and made it livable).  When we first arrived there, many of the children were still completing their morning routines (eating with their "families", cleaning, etc.) 

Quick Detour for information-Providence is set up in family units.  (apartments with 2-3 bedrooms, a bathroom suite, and a living room/kitchen area).  There are house parents assigned to each group of children.  There is a main living room and then bedrooms off of the living room/kitchen area.  The children are assigned to "families".  PCM does everything to encourage family like dynamics.  They eat their meals together, they fave family time, and family responsibilities.  Its pretty awesome!

The change that has occurred at Providence is amazing.  The pictures of the orphanage BEFORE PCM took control are terrible.  The children were still using outhouses.  The showers that were inside the orphanage were unsanitary and often times did not work.  The paint was peeling down the walls and mold was everywhere.  In the bedrooms, the children had mattresses and only a sheet to cover themselves throughout the year (even in the VERY COLD winter).  After our tour of the new, improved, and healthy living quarters at Providence, Our team sat and starred at the before pictures for a long time.  Three of the girls we had met from Stella's House lived at Cupcui BEFORE PCM renovated made it very real for us.
Its seems so easy for people to look at pictures of bad living conditions when it has no personal correlation ...but when you know someone who lives in or has lived in immediately becomes real for you. 

I feel that now is the time to share some more than ever sweet friends I wish I was a more eloquent writer and could truly convey the stories the way they were shared with me...

I would like to share several success stories that came from Cupcui.  I want to begin with Galina.  I facebooked her yesterday and asked her if it would be alright if I shared her story with you my friends.  She said of course!  So I want you to know...that I am sharing this with her blessing.
Galina is an AMAZING young woman.  You won't meet a more beautiful, more godly, more amazing girl.  To know her past, and see her present...its JUST INCREDIBLE.  That girl has a servants heart like no one.   She also has tons of spunk! I spent a week with her and feel so much love and respect for her.  I want to share her story with you...
Galina gave us our tour of Providence on the first day...she showed us the room that was hers while she lived there.  Here is a picture of Galina in her old room (granted it is MUCH nicer now).  Galina looks lovely in this picture...but the picture does not come close to conveying the true beauty that she has inside and out. 

As we walked through the village of Cupcui, I asked Galina about her life...When she was four years old, her parents divorced and put her in the orphanage.  I continued asking her about her situation and learned that she had 4 other siblings.  Her siblings were NOT put in the ophanage.  Just Galina...left alone at 4.  She was the middle of 5 children...and they had to get rid of one extra mouth to feed.  Galina was taken to the orphanage at Cupcui at 4.  Can you imagine?  Looking at your five children and deciding that one had to go...and then choosing which one it would be.  I don't have children myself...but I know if I had brought 5 children in to this world that I would do everything I could to protect ALL of them...not just some of them. 

So that is how Galina's life started...feeling that she was the one who was the least important, the least loved...Cupcui orphanage was NOT the wonderful place it is now...and Galina struggled to stay warm and to stay safe during her time there.  She met Krissy and Philip Cameron when she was much older.  They were some of the first people in her life to ever show her that they cared that she existed...that her life mattered to them.  They took the time to learn her name, to learn her story, to love her.  I can't imagine what would have happened to Galina if Philip and Krissy hadn't visited Cupcui.  Their love (through God) changed her life.  They taught her about God's love for her...they showed her that she is important to Him...that HE loves her so much that He gave His life for her.  Galina is now on FIRE for God.  ( I digress...but Galina just amazes me.)  That's not all of Galina's story...the school at the orphanage was a place of torture for Galina...she struggled with academics and was constantly ridiculed by the teachers.  We would call it verbal abuse...and it would NOT be acceptable in our schools...but it was just another day in the life of an orphan for Galina.  Galina's academics did not improve and the unkind treatment continued.  When Philip and Krissy learned of Galina's academic troubles, they questioned her vision.  Krissy and Philip arranged to have Galina's eyes checked.  At the doctors appointment, they found that Galina had large tumors bearing down on her ocular nerves that were causing some pretty severe visual impairments...and were potentially dangerous.  The Camerons arranged for Galina to have surgery in the U.S. to remove the tumors.  Galina's eyes and vision are beautiful now...When Galina turned 16 and "aged out" of the orphanage she moved in to Stella's House and completed high school.
Krissy and Philip Cameron have done many other amazing things like this (because of their love for God and for His Children...they are able to do these things because of donations to their ministry.)

Galina served as one of our interpreters during our trip.  She currently lives at Stella's House but is currently working like crazy to serve the kids at Cupcui.  She is actually doing "camp" with the kids for 4 weeks of the summer.  She has planned and organized and made wonderful things happen for the kids at the orphanage that used to be her home.  When Galina left Cupcui when she was 16, she promised she would never return...and now God is using her in this place that once held so many bad memories for her....He is using her there to make good memories for others.

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One Response to “Galina”

  1. Galina's story was heartbreaking yet hopeful. God will use her in a powerful way. Thank you for sharing this precious girl's life with us.