Three young men adopted from orphanages by Ukrainian families are climbing Africa’s Mt. Kilimanjaro this month to champion adoption. The group will also meet with African leaders to encourage local adoptions and share their adoption stories in African churches.
The efforts are being coordinated by our friends at Ukraine Without Orphans and World Without Orphans. My good friend Ruslan Maliuta (who also wrote a section for Becoming Home and will be speaking at CAFO2014) is also part of the climbing team.
What a powerful picture of how adoption not only changes the life of an individual…but also can echo outward in myriad other lives as these three young men speak up for children in need of families!
Learn more about the climb HERE, and see the story of one of the young men, Andrei, below:
Andrei’s story: Andrei’s family started to fall apart when he was very young. His parents divorced, and his mother became an alcoholic. When Andrei was just 6 years old, his oldest brother hung himself and his other brother was placed in a mental institution. At that point, Andrei ran away and began to live on the streets. He lived on the streets for 6 years, using drugs, glue, and alcohol. But everything changed for Andrei when he was taken into a Christian rehab center for street kids. From there, he learned the love of his Heavenly Father, and eventually was adopted into the family of an earthly father Gennady, who will be climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro with Andrei. And this isn’t the first mountain they’ve climbed together! The picture below is of them on Mt. Elbrus. When not climbing mountains, Andrei is busy studying guitar at a music conservatory. Help Andrei share his story and inspire others to adopt!