Russia (Mission Network News) — He’s traveled to Russia more times than can be counted, and the country continues to hold a special place in his heart. Orphan Outreach President Mike Douris remembers the first conversations with the Department of Education shortly after the Soviet Union fell. Government-run orphanages were filled to capacity with children who not only had been rescued from abuse and neglect, but also who had been placed by parents struggling to survive.
“In the early days, we were asked to provide guidance on basic childcare, to share best practices for the orphanages.”
But Douris discovered an unmet need for orphans in Russia—the crisis that occurs in most lives when those orphans age out of residential care. Ninety percent of all children who enter an orphanage will remain there until they graduate. While in residential care, the children have little opportunity to learn fundamental life skills necessary for adulthood. And they leave the orphanage with little provision.