Monday, December 23, 2019

Over the passed two months we've had three trainings for those who will be planning to work in Stephen's Home.

Our first training session was October 31st to November 1st

Those that took part in this first training included the two potential couples who will help as parents for the guys we'll bring into Stephen's Home. Since this training we've had further conversations with each couple as we've also continued to prepare all the legal aspects needed for this first home. Further talks will continue, but for the full-time couple, please pray with us as we are coming close to making a final decision to bring them on.

Slava and his wife Nataliya

~ getting started ~

Sergei and Marina

Nataliya and Nadejda Borisevna

The second training covered the same materials that the first did, with a second group of 10 differents folks from the PROMISE staff and local churches who plan to help out at Stephen's Home. The focus for the 1st day was Trauma and the impacts of it. The 2nd day of training focused on early childhood separation, the impacts during childhood and its effects long term.

Training #3 included 10 of the previous participants, including the couples preparing to fill the role of houseparents and other who plan to work in the home.

Slava and his wife Nataliya with Oksana in the foreground, Ludmila was our trainer again
for these session this past Saturday, the 21st of December.

Discussion groups were formed - the topic for this day was how a person with disabilities affects others in the home and how they are perceived effects them as well.

Presentations of each group helped share thoughts, but allowed Ludmila to make us think deeper and gain a better understanding.

Friday, September 13, 2019

The Grand Opening of Stephen's Home
SEPTEMBER 6th, 2019

We invited local pastors, friends and those who worked at the construction site over the past 3 years. About 65 folks showed up and celebrated with us.
By opening I shared that "the building standing behind me was not constructed by any one person's hands, but through the vision and planning that the Lord placed on my heart years ago." And then He included all of those who were gathered that day to take part in the work He's started to love on and bless the young men who will call Stephen's Home their own.

Welcome to the Grand Opening of Stephen's Home!

our MC for the day, Nastia, did a fantastic job
I'd work with her again any day 😀

Sasha, my first project manager, returned
just in time, from the states with his wife to share in the celebration.

Andrew Kavetski translated for the day. He and his family
are long time friends now and continue to be a wonderful encouragement.

Paliv Smolikov, alongside a host of pastors, closed the first part of the day. As the regional director for the local churches and a board member for PROMISE, his wisdom and understanding brings great blessings and insight as we continue
down this path the Lord has set before us.

It was a very winding day, so I had tied the red ribbon tightly so it would stay in place through the first part of the program. We'll I forgo that when Maxim and I went to untie the bow and found the knot, so the ribbon was cut, with very dull scissors.
take a look



bedroom and baths for the guys who will live here

main hall and kitchen

therapy garden coming together
All cleaned up for the special day!

 Our wonderful friend Ralph Wilson came from Chapelstreet Church in Geneva, IL
to work for two weeks, his third time to Ukraine, to put on a handicapped accessible deck and ramp with the assistance of Jack(Jennia), a local Christian and construction worker. They did a fantastic job!

which included lots of good sweets


Stephen's Home update of where we are at in the planning process 
over the summer of 2019. 

Saturday, June 29, 2019

Kitchen work is beginning at Stephen's Home

Over the past couple weeks the framework for the central area 
of the main kitchen was started. The needed preparation for the massive
ventilation system that will go in, as required by local authorities, 
you can see in these photo below. We are required to have
restaurant regulation sized piping to make sure gas from the stove
exits through the proper systems, 12 inch piping. 

Once the wood framework was up, I got to work on the artwork.
I've wanted to kitchen to be a special place of learning for these young men and we've tried to make it both easy to get around in, but also an enjoyable place with the anticipation that much time and sharing will happen here in this part of the home.

Valic and his worker who did all this set up,
now putting in a dividing wall between what will be the stove/oven area and the
work space for the guys on this of the dividing wall.

minor problem, took a few times to get it perfect

Not Michelangelo or Da Vinci
I prefer Monte or Renoir

my vantage point
the first couple days I was a bit frightened to even move
the structure sways very easily, though it won't fall, I'm told

I've watched so many of the workers up on the scaffolding much higher than
I am here, I just pray no one gets hurt in the process

took a few times to get the spacing correct for this large timepiece

Maxim is working diligently to get a number of the other details
in the home completed. Along with Valic's help we have a
small bathroom for the teams, as they come, there's now facilities
available on their floor. 

Maxim specializes in electricity and technical aspects
that I know nothing about, these sconces on the columns are some of his handy work.

Thursday, June 13, 2019

In trying to make sure all the little details get accomplished, as other big projects are getting completed we seem to have and endless flow of items moving from one part of the home to another, moving stuff out of the way, so projects can get completed. That challenges things as one day work is being done in one spot and I return to it the next day and all my materials have been moved so they have to hunted down and rearrange and then begin again. Time often disappears trying to get things together and cleaned up so work can begin again. Here's some completed projects and some that are just getting started. 

work on the fireplace getting completed

extension getting started on the boys bedroom, the one large room for 4 guys

main bathroom, everything in place and hung

design for the guest bathroom tiling

getting started on the main kitchen, the island

our little helper, Johnny Boy, he likes to be in on the action