Faith, union, and solidarity is what makes Sofiyas’s family stronger in Ukraine

This close-knit family of eight have a way of standing out in a crowd.  

“It is simply impossible for them to get by unnoticed,” the Ternopil sponsor site staff write. “Every Sunday you can see them in church, wearing humble but neat clothing, standing together with their hands folded in prayer.” The family has never missed a celebration at their church, always all together: Parents Oleh and Oksana, Nazariy, Olha-Mariya, Sofiya, Oksana, Matviy, and Ivan.  

Their faith has carried the family through many hardships. The war has caused many adults to lose their jobs, and Oleh was laid off. This left Oksana as the sole breadwinner, doing the only job she could find and still care for her children – a part-time cleaner at the hospital.  
Chalice has been a great source of support and relief over the years. Nazariy, their eldest, was the first to be sponsored way back in 2007. Over the next dozen years, two more would follow him into the sponsorship program when they reached eight or nine years old.  
“Regular sponsorship benefits covered much of their needs in nutrition, clothing, hygiene, and household goods,” the Ternopil staff write, “[these] have improved the quality of life of the family.”  
Thanks to everyone who gave household goods through Chalice’s gift catalogue, the family also gratefully received “a sofa bed and a bunk bed with orthopedic mattresses to ensure the children’s healthy sleep and overall wellbeing.”   

Oksana and Oleh have always made their children’s education their top priority. “Sponsorship encourages the children to succeed at their studies,” the staff say. Nazariy graduated with distinction and entered university to study philology and journalism. Oksana graduated from a college program in hospitality and now works in her industry. Olha-Mariya is pursuing administrative and secretarial studies. Sofiya just finished Grade 6. Matviy is still too young to start school.  
“All the girls in the family are gifted with beautiful voices for singing and, owing to Chalice’s sponsorship program, they had the possibility to attend the music club of a local community cultural center,” the site staff add. “The sisters have participated in numerous music competitions, performed solos and trios at all cultural events held in their schools and in the community.”   
“Their whole family feels grateful to God and Chalice for the long-time support through the sponsorship program,” the site staff says on the family’s behalf. “[Sponsorship] has helped the family to go through the hard times with dignity, and helped their children grow in due care.”   

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