This spring , I was heading to the airport in the middle of the night, on my way to Osh .. as we pulled out onto the road, Fire trucks came screaming down the road.. the first I have ever seen here, We discussed where they might be heading in this world of concrete apartments. A few hours later We were standing on the top of the a mountain in Osh , at the entrance of Solymins temple when I got a disturbing phone call . It was the home of many that we know that had just burned. Larisa was on the seen and needed help. We made some calls and right away Lepta plus ( Sergey and Anya's charity ) responded with clothes, many of the 65 survivors had only the clothes on their backs . Our friends at Taiwan Children's Fund acted right away as well and came with food. .. Larisa stayed on the case and continued to advocate for the families . It was only days before we were heading back to Canada, and there was not much that I could do, but when I saw that there was so little other support, we new that the little we could do was better then nothing. We worked with Larisa to get more food , clothing, bedding and other necessary supplies for them . Larisa hatched a plan that would see a local abandoned hospital renovated at our expense if the families could have a 2 year lease. We headed back to Canada with such heavy hearts, But we are so thankful that the story did not end there .
All the way back to Canada My heart and mind where consumed with grief for those we had just left behind. But I am so amazed at Gods provision. When we landed and I checked my email, there was a note from a sponsor with news of a sizable donation to help the families with immediate needs. Now for the renovations so that they could be in before winter. As may of you know we have a long standing friendship with Possibilities International. as well as a developing relationship with an incredible group of people from a church in Brantford Ontario. After being home for only a couple days , I contacted them both with this situation that was so heavy on my heart ,.. As if there was any doubt, right away they said " Just leave it with us " I can not express what a relief that was for me, especially knowing the impact that this would have on the people of Iskra.
Last week they necessary renovations were completed so that the families could move in before winter. A new roof was put on the Hospital. not just a patch, but the old roof removed, bad boards replaces, and a full new roof was installed. The necessary plumbing and electrical upgrade was completed so that families could move in, and last week , we joined in a celebration with them.
They said that the time of the fire they were all just in shock, and could not even think, They were so blessed by the work of Larisa and Tanya , they don't know what they would have done with out them. Today they know they have a long way to go, but they say that they know that they will be OK.. and wanted me to express great thanks to everyone that came forward to "save them" . We danced, we had wonderful food, and we even had Bubbles the clown perform for them .. Today they would put the past behind them and move forward with thanksgiving .
Then to top it off , yesterday we delivered a small space heater for each family, and started work on a homework club room for Tanya to work with the kids . She has a dream to do home work with the kids every day , and provide them each with a small snack after school, then come back in the evening and show movies or read books to them. We were able to purchase a nice carpet and have ordered 6 more tushuks for them to sit on . If we were to dream the impossible dream right now, it would be for a sponsor that would commit to $50 a week to off set the cost of food and school supplies for her work there. A door is open and a way has been made for Tanya to have such a positive impact on this entire community, I really feel that we need to come behind her in a big way. Below are a few pictures that will help to tell the story
|the home of 18 families 64 people , 18 children|
|our friend Cody examining the damage first hand|
|new roof at the hospital|
|Tanya in her classroom , giving out baby clothes|
|so happy and blessed with the new heaters, and the carpet for the classroom|
|making sure that everyone gets something|
|this heater means so much to them , especially yesterday when it was snowing and miserable out|
|they love the new outfits|
|a few of the families in Tanya's room after the carpet went down|
|A babushka and her grand baby in her one room apartment|
|At the celebration with the team , every family brought out something to share at the table , we were so humbled|
|I recognise these coats from when we brought them in the spring .. they seem a little more appropriate now that its not 130 degrees .|
|let the party begin ,, the kids loved that we all joined them dancing|