Miroslav Tolpiza, 16, holds an injection filled with a self-made drug based on ephedrine known as “baltushka,” in an abandoned house where he lives in Odessa, Ukraine. Almost all the homeless in Odessa use drugs.
For more on the homeless kids of Odessa, click HERE. (discretion advised)
“The fact is that nearly all these children take drugs and they are HIV positive, so they make up the most complicated group for the activists of the foundation as it’s too hard to communicate with them.”
To read more, click HERE. (discretion advised)
In a condemned building in the center of the Ukrainian harbor town Odessa homeless juveniles are injecting so-called “Boltushkas” – a cheap drug which slowly paralyzes the central nervous system. Both Dmitryi and Sergey – who injects the drug to his friend – have been infected with the HI virus by needle-sharing. Ukraine suffers from one of the worst AIDS epidemics in the world, and has reached the highest infection rate within Europe.
To view click HERE. (discretion advised)
Odessa has over 4,000 homeless kids. They are sometimes called social orphans. Many of them have a home but refuse to return there because of violence, drug abuse, alcoholism, neglect, or all of the above. They would rather live on the streets than return home. Many of them resort to theft, begging, or prostitution to survive. Almost all of them use drugs and many are sexually active.
Is there hope for these kids or should we discard hope for them as many in the society have?
Project Odessa Life is aiming to offer hope to the homeless children on the streets of Odessa through Jesus Christ and friendship. We are helping fill a felt need in their lives in order to create opportunities for them to hear about their real need in Jesus Christ.
All of us were lying in our own blood when Jesus said to us, “live!”
“And when I passed by you and saw you wallowing in your blood, I said to you in your blood, ‘Live!’ I said to you in your blood, ‘Live!’
There is a way you can help.
“Freely you have received, freely give.”
SOCKS IN A BOX INSTRUCTIONS
Homeless kids in Odessa have little hope. We would like to offer them a friend in ourselves and in the Lord Jesus Christ and help them however else we can. One way we have decided to begin doing this is by providing them with clean socks and underwear.
The quality of these items in Ukraine is not as good as it generally is in the U.S. You can imagine how living on the streets these would be very important items for them. Project Odessa Life is going to reach out to Odessa’s homeless children, teenagers, and young adults by providing them with clean, quality socks and underwear from the hands of a friend.
Get a box to fill up with socks and underwear. (66 lbs max) It is a good idea to have a strong cardboard box or to reinforce it with double layers of cardboard.
Make a sign that says “SOCKS IN A BOX!!
Rally your church family to work together to fill up the box with socks and underwear for boys and girls ages 6 to 20. (Other clothing items may be helpful as well.)
Make a list of every item in the box to bring with you when you drop it off. BE SURE TO INDICATE VARIETIES OF PRODUCT AND TYPE. STATE THEY ARE FOR THE HOMELESS WHEN YOU FILL OUT THE SHIPPING FORM. FOR EXAMPLE, WRITE “MEN’S SOCKS FOR THE HOMELESS – 20”, “BOYS SOCKS…- 30”, “GIRLS UNDERWEAR… – 10”. PLEASE TAKE ALL ITEMS OUT OF THEIR PLASTIC OR PAPER PACKAGING! PLEASE REMOVE ALL PLASTIC OR STRING TIES HOLDING SOCKS IN A BUNDLE! SO THAT CUSTOMS DOES NOT THINK WE ARE TRYING TO SELL ANYTHING IN UKRAINE! PLEASE DO NOT PUT ANY RECEIPTS IN THE BOX! IT MAY BE HELPFUL IF YOU WOULD MARK THE SIZES WITH SOME MASKING TAPE. Make sure it does not exceed 66 lbs. THANK YOU!
Tape up the box well. Be sure to tape up every seem.
Email me and let me know who you are and the name of your church group getting involved, and I will send you the address and phone number to put on the box.
Take the box with payment to your nearest Meest agent.
(Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will tell you where to drop it off, or you can check www.meest.net, but as this website is in Ukrainian, you may likely need our help. Or you can call Meest at 1 800 288 9949)
Often the agents locations are Ukrainians homes who now live in America, or a small business.
You will drop the box off with payment and they will leave you a receipt with a tracking number which you can email us.
Payment = $15/box + $.79/lb (A 66 lb box will cost about $68. The box is insured for $60.) (This was the price in Oregon, in some areas it may be as much as $1.20/lb with additional fees.)
The Meest agent will keep the box at their location until a Meest truck comes and picks it up and puts it on a ship to Ukraine.
Shipment takes about 8 weeks and they deliver right to our front door.
Pray for the homeless in Ukraine, and we’ll take it from there. As soon as the box of socks arrives, we will make sure they find their way onto the right feet.
We will be sure to keep everyone updated!
If you believe in what we’re doing and want to be a part of our team, sharing in the rewarding fruits of this ministry, to support Project Odessa Life with a one time gift or a monthly contribution of $10 or more, click and
Thank you so much for choosing to worship God with us in this way!
Jacoby & Lera
“And the master said to the servant, ‘Go out to the highways and hedges and compel people to come in, that my house may be filled.”