The true meaning of charity in action

Nadiya and her husband, Ihor, live with their six children in a little village about 80 km outside of Ternopil city in Ukraine. They practice their Christian faith together every day praying the rosary and regularly attending mass to receive communion. 

Nadiya thanks God for arranging her encounter with Nina, a field worker at Chalice’s Ternopil sponsor site, a few years ago. “Our life was not easy at that time,” Nadiya recalls.

They experienced a lack of resources for their family and still lived in Ihor’s parent’s house along with his grandparents. A dozen people in a four-room house.

Despite the small space, the children were studious and achieved high marks at school. Just at the right moment, Nadiya met Nina and their children started to be sponsored one after another. “When our eldest daughter Ulyana, and eldest son Taras, got sponsored in 2011 we felt like receiving a huge support,” Nadya writes. “We began to receive a regular food supply, school supplies, household goods like iron, skillet, flatware, blanket, and towels.”

Three years later, two more siblings – Natalya and Roman – entered the sponsorship program.

In 2016, the house needed significant work to repair the walls. “By another act of God’s providence, Roman’s sponsor sent a generous gift of special money at the same time.” Nadya exclaims. “Owing to God, and the children’s sponsorship,” she continues, “that year we finished building our house before winter and installed heating inside.”

They continued the renovations over the following year, and Nadya also landed a job at the local school. In the following years, “with God’s help and Chalice’s support,” they added appliances and running water to their home.

“So, our living conditions have become far better than 12 years ago,” she remarks. After Ihor’s grandparents passed away, the family now occupies five rooms – two people in each. The children can find some quiet places to study, at long last.

Now their eldest, Ulyana, is finishing her master’s degree in German. Taras graduated from the Lviv Construction College last year. He was called up at the beginning of the war and is now serving in the east of Ukraine.

Natalya, 19, is following her sister’s footsteps and pursuing German at the same university. Thanks to everyone who gave to Chalice’s gift catalogue, Natalya received much-needed financial assistance for her tuition. “That was a precious gift for our family.”

Mariya is in her second year of nursing school. The youngest, Roman and Lyuba, are in grades eight and six respectively. All six participated in site-organized events, like holiday parties and crafting workshops. They loved learning a new skill they could then teach another child. “My children discovered that they get so much pleasure from teaching or helping others. “

“I can’t imagine what our life would have been like without sponsorship support,” Natalya writes. “It is amazing to realize that they’re people we have never met, who have been sharing with us for years, to support and help our family! Some people cannot believe that this is possible. But we believe that for those who put all their hope in the Lord, everything is possible.”

“The sponsor site… cares for and provides for the sponsored children and helps them become better, be kind to each other and do good for each other. It is here that they see the true meaning of charity in action.”

“I am deeply grateful to God for the gift of life to me and my family. We are sincerely grateful to Chalice and the people of good will who make difference for others.”

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