Much More than Pregnancy Care

At Mission to Ukraine we care very deeply about mothers facing unexpected pregnancies.  Our staff and volunteers lovingly offer these precious women the counseling, medical care, and practical support they need to get back on their feet.  And as we do this, we are blessed with a very holy “window of opportunity” to introduce them to Christ, the Source of everlasting life, love and support.

 

Just two weeks ago, thanks to a wonderful group of volunteers from Indiana, 57 Ukrainian women experienced grace, love, and care in a way many had never dreamed possible at our annual Women’s Conference.  Not only did they make new friends, they spontaneously began helping each other by sharing kids’ clothes (hand-me-downs) and praying for each other!  It was amazing to hear so many of these women testify how this little retreat helped them come to know God in a more intimate and personal way!   Thank you, WOMEN OF GRACE CHURCH from Noblesville, Indiana for sharing your hearts and time with us.  You truly made an eternal impact!

Here’s what Nastya had to share about her life and camp experience:

Nastya and her baby boy at worship yoga (first left to right)

Nastya and her baby boy at worship yoga (first left to right)

I gave birth to my first baby when I was only 17. Four years later I got pregnant again. Neither my husband nor our parents wanted this child. They told me I should have an abortion to “do away with this problem.”  However, my aunt suggested I talk to one of the counselors at Mission to Ukraine (where she had previously received services).  She said they would help me and support me.  The next day I showed up at the MTU office - scared, asking for help - not knowing what type of help they could offer.  I received a very warm welcome from one of the counselors. She helped me realize what a horrible thing abortion was - that God gave me a gift of a child and I shouldn’t reject it!  They offered me emotional, practical, and spiritual support.  They even invited me to their Bible studies.  After several months I gave birth to a wonderful baby boy - a child whom I now love so deeply.

At first I didn’t have much faith in God and didn’t take Him or the Bible seriously. But thanks to the Bible groups and personal witness of God’s work in my life, I opened my heart to Him, receiving Him as my Lord and Savior.  Now I know He is with me and my children all the time. He watches over my family. Glory to our Father God!

This year I got to attend Women’s Conference for the first time. I am so thankful that God guided me there. The best way I can describe it is that “these days were like a fairy tale for me.” I didn’t want to leave! I got to meet new people. Our US group leaders – they are fantastic women. But best of all - I got to know God in a new way that will continue with me for years to come.


Year to date 158 children saved from abortion via services provided by the staff and volunteers at Mission to Ukraine’s 5 counseling locations.  We praise God and give Him all the glory!!!

Welcome Steve Boles, our New Executive Director

Dear Friends and Supporters of MTU,

As we move into the very busy camp season for the staff and volunteers in Ukraine and for the teams traveling from the US, we would like to take this opportunity to update you regarding the leadership of MTU.

For the last year and a half, David Helmer has very capably and willingly served as Interim Executive Director of MTU.  He has guided the ministry well and has overseen continued growth of the work in Zhitomir.  Along with David, Ira Venglovska, Director, Ukraine has led the staff and volunteers in the day to day ministry to women, children, and families facing the challenges of crisis pregnancies and special needs.  Together they have done an awesome job of carrying out the mission God has laid on our hearts.  We want to thank David for his term of service to MTU in this role.  As this role comes to an end, he will transition back the the Board of Directors and will serve on the Executive Leadership Team.

It is our privilege and pleasure to announce that Steve Boles has been hired as the next Executive Director of Mission to Ukraine.  

At the MTU overnight summer camps 15th anniversary

At the MTU overnight summer camps 15th anniversary

Steve has been intimately involved with our “family” for more than a dozen years.  As the founder and executive director of Mark 2 Ministries, Steve has provided training and support to an international staff in 8 countries - encouraging the evangelism, discipleship, and local church integration of individuals who have disabilities.

Over the years, he guided Mission to Ukraine staff in church integration of people with disabilities in Zhytomir, led 3 camps for deaf children alongside our Mission to Ukraine camps, and continues to be a strong advocate for the sanctity of human life!

Integration of people with disabities into churches conference 2014

Integration of people with disabities into churches conference 2014

While Steve was leading these endeavors, he was also a business owner of a successful translation company overseeing a staff of over 100 individuals speaking over 30 languages. He sold that business a few years ago in order to spend more time with his growing family of grandchildren (now holding steady at 3 - one of whom was born just a few days ago!)

Steve has been married to Debbie for 32 years.  They have 2 grown children and 3 amazingly cute granddaughters (he wanted me to mention that part again).  He loves listening to and playing classical piano, travel, and jogging.  But most of all, he loves Jesus Christ.

We are excited to see what the future holds under Steve and Ira’s leadership and stewardship of this ministry God has given us.  We look forward to keeping you up to date and well informed of all the happenings of MTU.

 Thank you again for your prayers and support.

 Ken Ney, MD, Chairman MTU Board of Directors.

Summer Camps: Let’s Move Mountains

Friends,

Let’s move the mountains of disbelief together. We invite you to join us in prayer for the most spiritually powerful time in our ministry - summer camps 2017.

The fiercest spiritual battles take place during our camp season, when most of our staff along with American and Ukrainian volunteers lavish abundant love on our campers and parents and invite them to follow Christ. This is the time when every hour of the day we bring the Kingdom of God on earth for the most desperate and marginalized. This is the time, when we need special spiritual support through your prayers.

July 8 -10, July 12-14 Day camps for women who chose life for their babies thanks to pregnancy care counseling

July 7-16, July 17-26 - Overnight summer camps for families with children with disabilities.

  • Pray for the leaders and volunteers to serve in the power of the Holy Spirit. May the campers experience unparalleled love of God.
  • Pray for safety and good health for everyone involved. Pray for spiritual protection from the evil one.· 
  • Pray for the hearts of mothers and children to be open to God.
  • May God’s Kingdome come. May His will be done.

Thank you!

yours in Him,

MTU team 

MTU Father Starts Rehab Foundation

Paul* is an incredible father to Yulia, a 9 year old girl with special needs. He is also a designer, book illustrator, interpreter, poet, and a co-founder of a charitable foundation. As a result of the generosity of MTU’s supporters, Paul started to dream big. I asked Paul to share his story. He asked me to keep it confidential. I hope, this interview will inspire you.   

Tanya: Your love for your daughter goes beyond anything I have heard of. You are the one who protected her even while she was in the womb. Tell me more about it.

Paul: I was about to move to Warsaw for a well-paid job when we found out we were pregnant, so I turned down the job to be with my family. Six months into the pregnancy, the ultrasound showed problems in our girl’s development. The doctors immediately suggested an abortion, and I said ‘no’. Outside pressure started mounting – relatives, friends, doctors. They just didn’t understand her value. For me, our child’s birth was the brightest, most joyous moment of my life. Nothing else even comes close. After Yulia was born and placed on my wife’s chest, the first thing the doctor said was, “Would you please sign a letter of rejection for your disabled child?” I hit him in the face, broke his jaw, and he ran away. Yulia is a living, breathing child that I love and will always take care of, even if finding support is difficult.

From what I understand, even though you needed help you didn’t trust MTU at first.

Well, yeah. Why would they want to help me? At that time we had nothing. We were in debt and help from our relatives was scarce.  But our daughter desperately needed professional care, and I decided to give MTU a chance. Now I know that everything MTU does is so valuable. I don’t know any other organization in Ukraine that does more for children with special needs and their parents. We take all MTU can offer. I’ve see huge changes in Yulia. Now she can stand still, sit by herself without falling, and she can interact with others. Though she doesn’t speak, she shows emotions. She understands, and she responds because of MTU’s exceptional care and therapy. MTU’s great example of doing good and doing it with excellence.

 So how did you come to a decision to start a charity?

 Several years ago I went to MTU to pick up our Christmas gift. I really wanted to return the favor. I asked ‘What do you need?’ I earned little, and was in debt, but still felt like giving back in whatever way I could. They suggested that I could help with monthly diaper packages. I posted an ad for donations in social media, and people actually gave! Over the next few weeks, we received several thousand grivna. At that point, I realized that I wanted to make charity a part of my life.

So how did it happen?

 Several months later, I met a marketing specialist with a vision for a global charity project. I told her “If I ever wanted to help anybody, it would be MTU. They helped my daughter with special needs.” So we started a charitable foundation called ‘Charity Postcard’. Our mission is to support rehabilitation centers in Ukraine. We raise money by selling postcards with the art of famous Ukrainian painters and illustrators. All profit goes to help various projects for people with special needs in Ukraine.

Thank you for your grateful heart and support! What are your plans for the foundation’s future?

Our ultimate goal is to raise enough support that rehab centers can continue to expand until every disabled child in Ukraine has access to a rehab services.

That sounds fantastic! We are with you. Thank you for your time and your passion. May God bless your family, your work, and your charity.

 *Names changed for confidentiality purposes