There is no greater feeling than being able to share the joy of friends, even if it is from across the world. This is one of the first things I learned in working with orphans in Russia and am often reminded of it.
My good friend Natasha, who I met during my last trip to Russia, recently shared exciting news with me during one of our conversations. For some time she had been talking of finally receiving her apartment from the government, something graduated orphans wait years and years for, many of them giving up hope that it will ever happen. Natasha could not contain her excitement as she described, her ideas for wallpaper, renovation plans, or her trip to IKEA to furnish her future home.
Recently Natasha emailed me a link to a video of a story by a local news station in Kostroma. I watched for the first few minutes of the video as the reporter toured a building, but not being able to understand the language, I could only guess what the story was about and why Natasha had sent me the video. Then the camera cut to her walking through her new home, which she had waited so long for. Her smile grew bigger with every step and as she answered the reporters questions, it was obvious without even being able to understand her, that nothing could take away her excitement in that moment. Moments like this one are the highlight of my work with Orphan's Tree, to see orphans' hard work and patience blossom into success.
George and Rebecca in their most recent posts shared some sad, yet, inspiring stories of orphans who are facing some particularly tragic struggles currently in their lives, and of the courage they showed during those difficult times. With this post I wanted to share some praise, some happy news of a friend's many prayers being answered.
When I visited Russia recently the difficulty and struggle of orphan graduates to receive their apartments from the government was a frequent topic. Many will fight for years to receive their apartment. Several graduates I met even said they simply had lost hope of it ever happening.
I thank God so much for answering Natasha's prayers and giving her a home of her own to enjoy. I pray that I will be able to see the joy Natasha experienced on the faces of many other orphans who pray for the same thing she did.