Ukraine (MNN) — The ongoing crisis in Ukraine has been the reason for an increasing number of broken families and orphaned children.
Backyards have been turned into warzones. More than 8,000 have been killed since it’s start in 2013 and 2 million more have fled their homes in eastern Ukraine.
Suffice it to say, civilians have been most affected by the war.
Force for Christ recently visited orphanages in Central Ukraine where thousands of refugee children fled to from the east.
“We met many refugee children, and [the war is] hard on them,” says Chad LaForce with Force for Christ.
“They’ve been torn out of their life. They’ve been torn out of their homes. Many of them have lost loved ones or their whole family in the war. They’re separate from anything that they’ve known. And sometimes when we meet them, they’ve only been in the orphanage a few days. They’ve come right out of the east.”
Kids are weighed down with the trauma of losing so much. Everything is either unfamiliar, changing, or corrupt.
International Monetary Fund chief Christine Lagarde recently expressed her concern for the slow action on improving the Ukrainian government as well as fighting corruption.
“There are a lot of changes in flux, and I don’t know if the nation really knows yet how to solve these problems–both the war and the result of the war with families and children.” LaForce says.
“That has a big impact on us. It has a big impact on them. But God is faithful.”
The ministry is running a hosting program so Ukrainian orphans can visit Christian families in America.
Twice a year, Force for Christ goes to Ukrainian orphanages and gets to know the children. Later in the season, many of the children travel to America for a 4-6 week visit with host families.
“They receive love. They’re taught about the Lord. It’s a boost for them. It also gives them people somewhere in the world that are connected with them and care about them. And we found it’s a really positive thing for these kids.”
Force for Christ has seen night and day differences in children.
After losing family and homes, most kids are filled with sadness and don’t want to talk.
But the hosting program has given them the encouragement they need. They are assured that in their world of uncertainty, one thing remains constant: a family loves and cares about them.
The most recent trip was a huge success and changed the lives of 30 children and their host families. This summer, Force for Christ has another opportunity. If you’d like to host a child, click here.