Saturday, June 10, 2017

Myths from Ukraine

Like any other country, Ukraine has stories about its past or present that never seem to go away. The following is a Mennonite version of "Myth Busters".

Young people who are very good in the trades or in university invariably leave Ukraine for countries in the west. When we review the list of our graduating students to whom we gave financial assistance, we find that journalists, medical doctors, nurses, and teachers have chosen to remain in Ukraine. In fact one of our new doctors who is a recent graduate from our financial aid program, is coming to provide relief help at the Mennonite Centre clinic.

Ukraine isn't serious about cleaning up the environment. Ukraine has been forced to find ways of decreasing its dependence on expensive Russian gas, and its reliance on coal for the production of electricity. Just north of Tokmak, the city has a very large field of solar panels and the mayor informed us that they are going into a major recycling program. In addition, the current 65 windmills near the Sea of Asov will soon be expanded to 150.





Ukrainians don't volunteer for community service as much as other countries. This is definitely not true. Teachers spend a lot of their summer helping to paint, plaster, and get their schools ready for the fall.
In Molochansk, a local businessman organizes Saturday clean-up days where people collect garbage throughout the town. Both Tokmak and Molochansk are a lot cleaner than they used to be. Here are two pictures to show how clean the Willms estate now is.

We recently had a man who received medications after hip surgery volunteer to take people to the sea for summer holidays. During the recent conflicts in the south eastern area, many people collected food, medicines, and clothing for the soldiers. Many people volunteer to help their infirm neighbors with home care, gardening, and shopping. In fact this is a country where everyone knows their neighbors and looks out for them. They practice neighborhood watch.




Some Ukrainians believe that the roads are not really that bad. We believe that this not true; the many car tire repairs, and Lil's back, can vouch for that. Recently we took a trip to Orekhov, a village that in the 1870's had very few but very influential Mennonites.  This year they are celebrating the tenure of the first village mayor, a Mr. Johann H. Janzen, who was mayor there for 25 years. At one point the road was so bad that people had made a parallel road with their vehicles on the grass for well over a kilometer. Now you had a so-called four-lane highway. The new section was dusty but smooth. It was a new form of a passing lane.
The myth that there is nothing modern about the current methods of agriculture. That may have been the case shortly after independence, but from the vantage point of the Colonista Hills on the west side of the Molotchna River, the fields look spectacular with canola, winter wheat, sunflowers, and barley. In 2016, Ukraine had very productive crops, and so far this year looks the same. The Melitopol cherry harvest has been abundant, and our fridge here gives evidence of the good fruit and the generous nature of the people. John Deere dealerships appear in many towns.
Fruit trees in Melitopol
Ukraine lost its tourist potential after it lost Crimea. While the loss of Crimea is significant, towns along the Sea of Asov are doing a booming business in building seaside resorts. New motels, parks, playground areas for children and restaurants, are springing up to accommodate those who can't get into Crimea for their summer holidays. The water is already warm enough to swim in, the beaches are gentle, and the sand is clean. For a family of four, you could have a good dinner without drinks for around $15 Canadian.


The more we get to know this wonderful country and its people, the more we question our preconceived notions.

On Tuesday, June 13, we will be off to Vienna and finally into BC. Then day will become night, night will become day, and the meaningful time spent here will be well worth the adjustment.


To contribute to the work of the Mennonite Centre in Ukraine, you can make your donation to “Friends of the Mennonite Centre”.  All cheques should be mailed to George Dyck, Treasurer, 3675 North Service Road, Beamsville, ON, L0R 1B1.
If you wish to donate online, go to the website www.canadahelps.org, key in “Mennonite Centre Ukraine”, and click on the Search button.  Then click on “V” for “View”, and “P” for “Profile”.  Then “Donate now”.
Please browse our new website at www.mennonitecentre.ca


We thank you,

Ben and Lil Stobbe


Sunday, June 04, 2017

Dyakuyu, Spasiba Bol'shoy, saying Thank You

Ukrainians who receive funds from us always say "Spasiba bol'shoye", or "Dyakuyu" in Ukrainian. It means "Thanks", or "Big thanks".  This week we seemed to receive a lot of thank yous.

One of our tasks as Canadian directors is to follow up on projects. We meet with the recipients of your donations, wanting to know and see how the money was spent. This week we went east, close to the conflict zone, and northwest to the village of Nicolaipol.  We also met people in Zaporozhye. The trip to the east took us to two small towns where we met with the pastor of a church that is very engaged in social projects in their community.  The church is providing clean filtered water from their well to small villages near the conflict zone. They are also involved in a halfway house for released offenders and we helped them purchase another house for people suffering from addictions. The pastor was very happy to show us all the projects that we helped them start.
Unfortunately at this time, Ben was in the midst of getting a cold, and the pastor treated him to a genuine Ukrainian sauna with the "full-meal deal", including healthy swats with greens from the garden that had been soaked in hot water.  He still got the cold despite full immersions in a very cold pool.

But what did help was going to the neighboring town where we have supported an energetic young woman who has successfully started a bakery.  Her warm, engaging smile matched the wonderful aroma of freshly baked breads and goodies.  In getting the bakery started we provided a stove, refrigerator, and building renovations.  The bakery is committed to providing a certain amount of free goods to the poor, particularly seniors, in their community. These are villages that are close to the conflict area where they have done a remarkable job of trying to keep a sense of normalcy.

Most people in this territory work in the coal mines. The four-hour trip to this area (three hours on the road with one hour in the holes), revealed vast tracts of lush green fields, giving these residents an anticipation of very good crops.















On our way back to Zaporozhye, we stopped and visited an IDP family from Crimea who, with support from a generous donor, were able to purchase a property and start a bee-keeping operation.  They are also growing roses for commercial use. Nikolai's gentle bees are pollinating the flowering acacia trees and making honey. The roses are happy that the well produces sufficient water for the business. This is another couple that gladly says "Spasiba Bol'shoye".

We also went northwest of Zaporozhye to visit the former Mennonite village of Nicolaipol.  Usually one can expect school principals to be a rather scarred and sober lot, but in saying thank you for a wall cabinet in a classroom, Nadejda gave us an exuberant thank you.
The board just approved providing some funds to help repair the ceilings in two classroom in Nadejda's school.  One wonders how she will demonstrate her thanks when that project is finished.

Right beside the school is the former Mennonite church in Nicolaipol, which is now a school gym. This church has now had its own conversion. Slam-dunk doesn't mean baptism, a foul shot does not refer to improper behavior, and a 3-pointer does not refer to the Trinity.
The windows are thanks to the Ministry of Education and the local government.  Your donations provided protective netting for these windows.

Another genuine "Spasiba Bol'shoy" came from Yuriy and his wife Natasha, a couple who have made a dramatic change from a life of addictions and despair.  They now are leading the cause of helping the homeless in Zaporozhye. Natasha is taking a course in bookkeeping for their organization called "Love Without Boundaries".  She desperately needed a computer and printer. We met with them to tell them the board had approved their requests.  Upon hearing the good news, Yuriy broke into a huge smile, then a tear or two were visible.  Then he got up from his chair and thanked us profusely. We are sure the people in the Intourist lobby seldom see such a sincere demonstration of thanks.
Olga, with Natasha and Yuriy
As a Canadian director working in Ukraine and a board member of FOMCU, I want to say "Spasiba Bol'shoye" to you, our donors.


To contribute to the work of the Mennonite Centre in Ukraine, you can make your donation to “Friends of the Mennonite Centre”.  All cheques should be mailed to George Dyck, Treasurer, 3675 North Service Road, Beamsville, ON, L0R 1B1.
If you wish to donate online, go to the website www.canadahelps.org, key in “Mennonite Centre Ukraine”, and click on the Search button.  Then click on “V” for “View”, and “P” for “Profile”.  Then “Donate now”.
Please browse our new website at www.mennonitecentre.ca

We thank you,

Ben and Lil Stobbe

Sunday, May 28, 2017

Schools of Hard Knocks

Thank you statement
This is the week that most Ukrainian school children look forward to; the last week of school.  Many of our activities this past week involved visiting schools and attending Last Bell. Last Bell is a ceremony that acknowledges particularly the graduating class.

We visited the Sanitorium school which has served children with health problems for 70 years. Lydia, the director, has been there for 50 years and says that this year will be her last. She developed a close relationship with Menno Simons Christian School from Calgary, which has funded many projects ranging from supplying new toilets to ping pong tables. Menno Simons has definitely made work easier for Lydia.  Lydia says the children keep her young.  She certainly does not look her age, and she is a vibrant and highly respected director.  But the school numbers are going down because the government wants to move away from specialized health-oriented schools.

Molotchna River
On Friday the 26th, we attended 4 last bell ceremonies. Vinogradanoya school is a small kindergarten school combination in a town on the western side of the Molotchna River.
The river provides a idyllic reminder of a time when our grandparents, as boys and girls, no doubt let their imaginations soar with ideas of travelling across lakes and oceans.  The kindergarten class in the school is anticipating a new wave of youngsters this fall. So much so that they have asked us to help them with finishing an extra playroom and sleeping area. The teachers are pleased that the parents are doing their part in bringing in more children. Ironically, nearby the school is the most impressive stork's nest in the Molotchna area.



Nearby is the Preshib Orphanage. This school is also facing a declining enrollment.  The social service authorities plan to amalgamate this school with the one in Tokmak.  Regardless of the realities, the children and teachers still put on an impressive Last Bell ceremony.  To see a husky graduate place a final-year kindergarten student on his shoulder and take her around the yard, ringing the bell that one hears above the applause, is a powerful moment.



While at the Preshib event, Ben met a impressive young man who was a graduate of an orphanage in Crimea.  Zhenya is an entrepreneur who has a heart for children in orphanages.  He is a salesman for a sports shoe company and comes to this area at least once a month.  He always visits the orphanage here, and either gives them shoes or pays the costs for the children to attend sporting events.  He is a great supporter and sponsor of this orphanage.


The other two Last Bell events we attended at the Russian and Ukrainian schools in Molochansk very much reflected the "new" Ukraine. Both events were dramatically more nationalistic.  In the Russian school, the Ukrainian colors were prominently displayed.  In the Ukrainian school, they remembered an alumni who died in the war. There was a military presence at the Ukrainian school, and students in the "Quest" program displayed their marching skills.
All in step

The Ukrainian school highlighted their school sports activities including a demonstration of karate students breaking old possibly-Mennonite roofing tiles. No harm done; there are a lot more of these tiles around.




The Russian and Ukrainian schools in Molochansk have generally always had a friendly rivalry.  This year, the grads of both schools got together for a final picture. It was great to see both groups come together.



Both Lil and I fondly remember finishing school and getting into summer.  However, that was short-lived when we were called to the summer school of berry-picking, where our mothers were the teachers, and our sibling were our co-conspirators in avoidance tactics.  On Saturday, Ben went out and picked strawberries.  His mother always felt that the only thing better than picking strawberries was sitting on a swing on a warm summer evening.  So Ben found a swing, took the strawberries, and remembered his mother in her childhood country.
Yummy, even without ice cream

To contribute to the work of the Mennonite Centre in Ukraine, you can make your donation to “Friends of the Mennonite Centre”.  All cheques should be mailed to George Dyck, Treasurer, 3675 North Service Road, Beamsville, ON, L0R 1B1.
If you wish to donate online, go to the website www.canadahelps.org, key in “Mennonite Centre Ukraine”, and click on the Search button.  Then click on “V” for “View”, and “P” for “Profile”.  Then “Donate now”.
Please browse our new website at www.mennonitecentre.ca


We thank you,
Ben and Lil Stobbe

Sunday, May 21, 2017

Are we getting somewhere?

Ben presenting the new computer
We began this week in the villages and ended in the city of Zaporozhye.  The villages we started in were in south Molotchna down by the Juschanlee River.  We went to the Cornies Juschalee estate to give a computer to a very small girl who has a very big heart.  11-year-old Alona attends the school in Kirovo and needs a laptop computer to do her schoolwork. We have never been asked to help with anything for this school.  One of the teachers heard about our work and approached us about helping Alona.  The school principal, Natasha, was delighted that we could do this, and we think that "little Alona"  may possibly have opened a big door for the school.  Normally children with special needs do not go to school but stay at home and get a part-time tutor.  Alona wanted none of that; she wanted to go to school, and her mother takes her every day.

After leaving an ecstatic Alona, we went off to see the Reimer estate in Juschanlee.  Time is certainly taking its toll on the estate buildings.

Gatepost at the Reimer estate
The large former Reimer house is looking pretty rough, and currently serves as an ambulatory clinic.  This is not the only former Mennonite building that is showing its years. Many of the villages in Molotchna are getting smaller and older.  Schools such as the one in Udarnik (Neukirch) are closed.  The roads between the villages aren't getting any better, and many villages don't have any store at all.

In Udarnik we were fortunate to find the former school principal and the history teacher while we were in the village.  Nikolai, the former school principal, is now the maintenance man, keeping up the school yard and building.  Anatoli, the history teacher, is retired.  Here is a picture of Anatoli sitting in our
VW van, avoiding the rain and showing his
Anatoli reviewing the history of the village of  Udarnik
memoirs of the village to Ruth Derksen-Siemens and Oksana Bratchenko.  Anatoli has done a lot of work in keeping records of the Mennonite story in the Juschanlee south Molotchna villages.  His familiarity with German helps him in reviewing documents.

Zaporozhye gives an entirely different feel than the villages in Molochansk.  The city is bustling with restaurants, shops, and crowded streets.  One of our big projects in Zaporozhye is helping integrate children with special needs into the regular school system.  Just as Alona from Kirova wants to go to school, so do the autistic children in the Prometei program.  We are working with education and government officials to increase state funding for special needs children in schools.  After a letter and some phone calls, we were granted a meeting with the Governor of the Zaporozhye Oblast (state) to promote a conference we are having with state psychiatrists.  The Governor gave us 45 minutes of his very busy schedule and said that they would be sending senior officials to the conference.  We were delighted. This is not the first time Mennonite groups have worked with the state in this area to improve education opportunities for special needs children.  The Maria school for the Deaf and Mute in Tiege was built in 1890 and was a model school for deaf and mute children throughout the Russian empire. The work at Prometei continues that noble tradition.  On the way to Tiege in the Orlovo area, we passed the memorial monument to the 131 deaf and mute children who were killed by the Nazis in WWII.  It is a tribute to Ukrainians in this area in that they
In memory of the 131 children
wanted a monument to remember the children.  At the top of this monument is a bell that rings in the wind.  Etched around and near top of the monument are children's faces.   The chiming bell reminds us of the children.

Ben joining the children at Prometei
During this week we visited many schools and continued to focus on English classes.  All schools are required to teach English in grade 1.  By the fifth grade, the children can opt to learn German or French.  We have noticed that English is understood more frequently in stores and restaurants.  The challenges for teachers seems to be to move from learning the rules of English to becoming comfortable in speaking English.

We believe you as donors are making a significant impact in this area of Ukraine.  Young people are excited about their future.  The economy is starting to grow.  We want to continue to intervene in critical areas where we can really make a difference in the lives of people and in their country.  

Thanks for your support,
Ben and Lil

To contribute to the work of the Mennonite Centre in Ukraine, you can make your donation to “Friends of the Mennonite Centre”.  All cheques should be mailed to George Dyck, Treasurer, 3675 North Service Road, Beamsville, ON, L0R 1B1.
If  you wish to donate online, go to the website www.canadahelps.org, key in “Mennonite Centre Ukraine”, and click on the Search button.  Then click on “V” for “View”, and “P” for “Profile”.  Then “Donate now”.
Please browse our new website at www.mennonitecentre.ca
We thank you,

Ben and Lil Stobbe

Sunday, May 14, 2017

A long awaited spring in Ukraine

Dear friends,

Our return trip to Ukraine was more adventurous than we anticipated when we found out that Austrian Airlines for some unknown reason, delayed our departure and arrival time by 12 hours.
We expected to arrive at the Dnepro airport at 1:40 pm.  This has been our landing time for many years.  This is a change in schedule, not a one-time change.  Fortunately, we were able to arrange for a taxi pickup and we took the 2-hour trip to the InTourist Hotel in Zaporozhye.  We got to bed at 4:00 a.m. Zaporozhye time.  Our brains and jet-bagged eyes didn't know whether we'd been enrolled in a sleep deprivation program or we were going for a Guinness record of no sleep.

On the next day's trip to Molochansk we stopped in at Vasilevka, the small town which hosts the impressive Popov estate with a museum of pre-Soviet artifacts.  Popov was a wealthy nobleman who built all his buildings in the form of castles.
Ben presenting a 1902 children's book

The museum gives a good image of how people lived in the 19th century in rural Russia. Ben presented an old Mennonite children's book.  The director of the museum, pictured here, was overjoyed to receive it.  We regularly keep in contact with this museum.


On our first full day in Molochansk we went to visit the medical clinic in Valadovka (Waldheim).  The former hospital administrator Dr. Troyan is a larger than life presence with a booming voice accompanied by strong opinions.  He is a wonderful person, but intimidating to some.  We had supplied medical equipment and building improvements to this facility when it was a hospital.  It is now an ambulatory clinic where the doctors and staff are expected to tend to the beautiful vegetable and flower gardens.  Dr. Troyan also goes to the front line to give medical supplies for the care of wounded soldiers.  In return, the soldiers have presented him with a Ukrainian flag with their thanks.
The Valadovka clinic has really been downsized because of the increased use of regional hospitals. This clinic has become specialized as an ambulance centre and also serves the local community needs by providing IV treatment and lab tests.  In the past year they have also used their extra space for internally displaced people (IDPs) who come from the war zones.  The clinic, like other institutions, has many mementos reminding people of the war.

Ruth with Tatiana
One of our major activities this week was to connect with English-speaking people who are interested in improving their conversational English.  In the past few years the schools have placed a great deal of emphasis on learning English or German as a second language.  We were privileged to have Ruth Derksen-Siemens and her husband Vic join us for 2 weeks here in Ukraine.  Ruth is a retired English professor from UBC and a current board member of the the Friends of the Mennonite Centre in Ukraine (FOMCU).  We visited English classes in schools and also met with Tatiana, the Dean of the Humanities at the Melitopol Technical Institute.  We found tremendous enthusiasm and support for having a camp or another type of specialized program to assist people in improving their spoken English.

Oksana and Lil with Svitlana
We also visited with Svitlana, who teaches music education at Melitopol Pedigogical University.  Svitlana is very interested in doing research on the history of Mennonite music in the 19th century.  We gave her some resource connections and also presented a music book from that period. She immediately started thumbing through the book and to her delight found a children's song in Russian which is still sung today.  The university in Melitopol has always been interested in our history.  There is clearly a new generation of musicians and historians who have a keen interest in our story.




Our week ended with an impressive band concert from the Molochansk music school.  They put on an outdoor concert for the seniors who come to the Mennonite Centre for lunch.  Most of the band instruments have been provided by you, our donors, and they are very well used and appreciated. Many of the band members played solo parts and were enthusiastically received by a clapping and toe-tapping group of smiling seniors.

It is good to be back!

Ben and Lil Stobbe

To contribute to the work of the Mennonite Centre in Ukraine, you can make your donation to “Friends of the Mennonite Centre”.  All cheques should be mailed to George Dyck, Treasurer, 3675 North Service Road, Beamsville, ON, L0R 1B1.

If you wish to donate online, go to the website www.canadahelps.org, key in “Mennonite Centre Ukraine”, and click on the Search button.  Then click on “V” for “View”, and “P” for “Profile”.  Then “Donate now”.

Please browse our new website at www.mennonitecentre.ca

We thank you,

Ben and Lil Stobbe


Monday, October 31, 2016

What has Ukraine got going for it?

Here in Canada we all hear the endless litany of problems in Ukraine. Instability, corruption, unemployment etc are accompanied with sighs and headshaking. However, I have had the good fortune of getting into Ukraine annually for many years and always going back to the same villages and cities. This allows me the opportunity to see change, whether good or bad. And for 2016 I see slow but steady improvements.  The pictures show a few examples such as clergy coming together at the Mennonite Centre to share their experiences. In times past villages could be identified as being Baptist, or Ukrainian Orthodox, or Mennonite, or Ukrainian Greek Catholic or Pentecostal etc.  Now you can see more than one church and even signs of working and celebrating events together.

 It's not only the clergy who come together; it is also the babushkas who share a morning together at the Mennonite Centre on a quilting project. They are an example of the increased level of volunteerism in this society. The increasing number of NGOs, Non Governmental Organizations, which are emerging in towns and cities often are started and staffed by volunteers. Organizations to prevent cruelty to animals, to help people in hospital care, who organize sports and cultural activities are critical in developing an emerging civil society.


One such organization was started by Angelika who started working with children with developmental disabilities.  She started a project Prometei, a  group mostly made up of volunteers who would care primarily for autistic children in a very small apartment. Soon the increasing demand required two apartments and staff started to get some financial support from parents. Mennonite organizations such as the Mennonite Family Centre and the Mennonite Centre Ukraine came through with support money. Then a very generous priest who had been given significant property to be used for community benefit selected Prometei as the beneficiaries of his generosity.  Soon the children were placed in a large comfortable space with kitchen and outdoor space. Then the local school received permission to incorporate older children into their school program. Here is the School principal working together with Angelika the Director of Prometei. Now over 60 children are either in the community or school program. Amazing care and progress is being made with these children.




What Ukraine has going for it are clergy who are letting go of turf and seeing the bigger picture, seniors who come together to help, and activists who want to help the vulnerable. This country has a great future. We are privileged to be part of it.

By the way, we plan to have a celebration of our 15th anniversary of the Mennonite Centre in Ukraine. The event will be in Abbotsford on Thursday, November 24 at 7:00 PM. in the Mennonite Historical Musuem, 1818 Clearbrook Road. This will be a Music and Dessert fundraising evening.

To contribute to the work of the Mennonite Centre in Ukraine, you can make your donation to "Friends of the Mennonite Centre in Ukraine". All cheques should be mailed to George Dyck, Treasurer, 3675 North Service road, Beamsville, ON, L0R 1B1.

If you wish to donate online, go to the website www.canadahelps.org, key in "Mennonite Centre Ukraine", and click on the search button. Then click on "V" for View and "P" for Profile. Then "Donate Now".

We thank you,
Ben and Lil Stobbe

 

Saturday, October 22, 2016

#3 - Gifts that Keep on Giving

One of the factors we consider in deciding whether or not to support a proposal is the potential long term impact.  After being here in Ukraine for 15 years, we can see more clearly which projects have had lasting impact.

This week, we came on a situation where we feel that supporting an IDP (internally displaced person) family from Crimea can also benefit the community where they plan to reside.  We became aware of this family with 4 children last spring when we were told that the youngest suffered from severe allergies.  The family had little funds for medical help and tried several unconventional methods to deal with the extreme rash on his face.  We gave funds for a proper diagnosis and treatment.  The following two pictures show the change.                


This family had a prosperous bee keeping business in Crimea prior to the Russian takeover. They all got into their old Lada and fled into southern Ukraine.  Currently they are renting and working for a greenhouse business.  Their dream is to buy a small plot of land and start growing roses for the market.  They have found nearby property in the village and for $5000 they can get an old house and a half hectare of land.  They asked us for a loan.  We cannot give out loans.  Instead we suggested that if we could find specific donors we would be prepared to consider giving them funds to purchase the house on condition that they agree to benefit the community with their property.  For example, they could consider a community garden or provide roses free of charge for community events.  This is an example of giving a gift that will continue to benefits others.  We have had similar arrangements for other farmers in the past.  

Another version of this concept can be found here in Zaparozhe.  Uri got involved in the drug scene and spent time in prison.  After his release, he became a very committed Christian who has a passion to help the homeless.  Each week he provides an outdoor soup kitchen for homeless people in  a park.  He cooks up a large stock pot of hot food together with salad, bread, and a hot drink.  His wife sets up an outdoor barbershop where the homeless sit on the concrete slab.  The hair is cut and dispatched by the wind.  At today's prices Ben was tempted to get a freebie haircut.  Another benefit of getting a haircut and a different item of clothing is that they find it easier to go into warm places like a railway station.  Meanwhile Uri is putting on his surgical gloves and cleaning and applying salve to a cut and bruised face.  We funded the costs for this meal, and the hair clippers.  People also can choose items of used clothing.  There were about 60 people that came out.  

A new look
And how does our gift keep giving? After receiving this gift, the men and women clean up the park, gathering paper and other debris.  In addition, five men have found jobs.  It is amazing what a haircut and new clothes can do for their self esteem.

Another example of a gift that keeps on giving is the rototiller that we provided for the church group in Novapetrovka, formerly Eichenfeld.  This is more than a rototiller for the church garden; it also serves as a rototiller for the larger community.  Pastor Sergei takes the rototiller to seniors and helps them get their gardens ready for spring planting.

The best way to ensure a lasting positive benefit is not necessarily to physically be here forever, but to make sure that Ukrainians are equipped to continue our legacy.

To contribute to the work of the Mennonite Centre in Ukraine, you can make your donation to "Friends of the Mennonite Centre in Ukraine".  All cheques should be mailed to George Dyck, Treasurer, 3675 North Service Road, Beamsville, ON  L0R 1B1.

If you wish to donate online, go to the website www.canadahelps.org, key in "Mennonite Centre Ukraine", and click on the search button.  Then click on "V" for View, then "P" for profile.  Then "Donate Now".

We thank you,
Ben and Lil Stobbe