Image being sixteen all over again. Now imagine being sixteen without the family you had to care for and guide you through adolescence. This is the life of youth that CERI ministers to in Moldova. For more than a decade, Children's Emergency Relief International (CERI) has been reaching youth who are aging out of state-run orphanages in Moldova with Transitional Care services.Services for youth include education and tutoring assistance, emotional guidance and counseling, job skills training, personal financial management, and so much more. If not for CERI, youth without parents would be left on the streets to fend for themselves after aging out of orphanages at sixteen. Rather than excitement, most youth express extreme anxiety and fear as their sixteenth birthdays approach.Thanks to you, CERI is able to intervene and provide hope to vulnerable youth as they continue to grow and learn and, eventually, make the transition into adulthood. On behalf of the CERI youth in our Transitional Care program, THANK YOU! We appreciate you more than you know...
The Moldova Transitional Youth Care program focuses on youth who are aging out of CERI's foster care program, youth who have no living parents and are in need of mentorship for surviving the real world as working adults. For many youth, they are excited with the prospect of becoming independent contributers to society; however, many face the daunting task of earning household incomes while attending school and being primary caregivers to other siblings.
CERI recently sent several rotating mission teams to celebrate summer break with these coming-of-age youth. From the USA, they brought games and trust-building exercises that included zip-lining and items for Moldovan youth to make creative gifts for their transitional care peers. CERI staff and volunteers also spent quality time with the youth to share their personal testimonies and to provide encouragement through the Bible. Each mission team's primary message was to trust in God, assuring them that he will never leave His faithful children.
Although summer has come to an end, there are new youth who are just now seeking guidance from CERI's transitional care program. When children and youth receive support from a CERI donor, it is a gift that lasts for generations! Thank you for your generous support to CERI kids.
When an orphan in Moldova is coming of age to transition out of the orphan program, it’s easy for them to get depressed and think that the world is a cold place. This spring we decided to conduct a giving exercise. We looked around and instead of waiting for someone else to make us smile, we looked for people who we could bring a smile to.Together with the youth, we packed our bags with toys and many roses. First we went to a nearby kindergarten and gave toys to other children. Everybody gathered and we started a ripple of joy. After that, we went on the street to give roses to people passing by... you can see the response we received in the photo.The reaction was better than we expected. The happiest people of all ended up being our youth who were running with enthusiasm on the streets and giving flowers. At the end, they all said that they would definitely like to do an activity like this again soon!
Inspiring Hope is not just what Children's Emergency Relief International (CERI) does through your gifts; it's who we are. As orphans in Moldova near the age of sixteen – the year at which youth age out of orphanages – their lives become riddled with fear and anxiety. "What will I do?" they wonder; "Where will I go?" Leaving with the clothes on their back and a government-issued bus ticket to… anywhere, orphaned youth are completely unprepared for life as independent adults.Through our Transitional Care (TC) program and your generous gifts, CERI is able to calm the woes of angst-ridden youth by offering them safety and the opportunity to continue their educations as they make the successful transition into independent living. Your gifts enable CERI to provide stability, counseling, nurturing, and guidance to youth who otherwise would not stand a chance. Our philosophy at CERI is that the best way to Inspire Hope, is to teach the youth we serve to do the same. Below is a field report from one of CERI’s Moldovan caseworkers:It has become a tradition every year at Christmas for CERI’s Transitional Care youth to offer brighter moments to kids who are in the same situation that they themselves were in years prior. Last December we visited two temporary placement centers in which our TC youth offered encouragement to other children and youth in need. Our youth rehearsed a drama and Christmas carols for several days and even brought gifts for the children, purchased with their own money! It was an enormous stepping stone in the lives of our youth. No longer were they the ones sitting in the audience in the orphanages watching the programs, receiving the gifts; they are now the ones who teach, encourage, and give. What a blessing to watch CERI youth Inspiring Hope!
Daniela Cerî, TC Chief Social Worker – CERI MoldovaThank you for making our work possible!!
Would you believe it's almost Christmas? We at CERI hope you had a Happy Thanksgiving and are excited about the joy that Christmas brings! Amid the hustle and bustle of this holiday season, we wanted to pause to send you a special update on the program you support and an enormous THANK YOU.
As you know, orphans in Moldova age out of the orphanage at age 16. As youth approach their sixteenth birthdays, with this comes tremendous anxiety and fear; fear of what lies ahead; fear of what survival looks like; fear of being alone; fear... of what happens next. Over and over we hear testimonials from mission team members who tell us that, as they get to know orphaned youth on our mission trips, fear is the one emotion the youth communicate. CERI is a child sponsorship and mission's organization, specializing in care for vulnerable children, youth and their families around the world so they may grow to live healthy and productive lives. But as you can imagine, the number of children in need of child sponsorships grossly outweighs the number of child sponsors. That's where you come in!Your gifts to CERI mean hope for youth aging out of orphanages! Because of your kindness, CERI is able to reach out to vulnerable and hurting youth, whether or not they have a sponsor. You fill the seemingly impenetrable gap, and we THANK YOU. We thank you because, without generosity like yours, what we do day-in and day-out would be impossible. After thirteen years of faithful service to at-risk children and youth around the world, CERI is realizing a harvest from its years of sowing. Youth who have graduated from our programs are returning to CERI... as volunteers!I'd like to introduce you to Ecaterina. You may recall reading her story in a previous update. Ecaterina entered CERI's program when she, herself, was living in an orphanage. Now Ecaterina offers her time as a trusted CERI volunteer. Read what she has to say about your generosity:"I'm a CERI volunteer since 2011. I began to devote my time to others, because I had a strong desire to do something... something for others, not for myself. The people who encouraged me and made a difference in my life are the people that I met here - at CERI. Because some people cared for me, I understood that it's time to do something for the others. I like to be involved in activities, meetings, camps organized by CERI. I also like to prepare the meals for the youth every Friday when they have Bible study. I'm glad that I can serve them, and I can help even if it's just a little thing to do."THANK YOU, CERI friends! We would not be who we are without you...
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Combined with other sources of funding, this project raised enough money to fund the outlined activities and is no longer accepting donations.
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