Finding Family

Anastasia often comes to BVMI after working a long day as a home attendant. Soft-spoken, she always has a smile on her face, despite an often difficult life. She emigrated from Kiev after her children started getting sick in the aftermath of Chernobyl. “I came here to give my kids a better life. Watching them get sick over something I couldn’t control – it was heartbreaking. All I want is for them to be safe, happy, and healthy.”

A teacher in Kiev, she now tries to find purpose as a home health aide. “When I was teaching, I felt important and respected. I do miss it and wish more than anything I could teach here. It’s why I work so hard to improve my English,” says Anastasia.

Since finding BVMI, Anastasia feels like she has found a family. “God bless these people. It’s amazing when people give time for people – without pay. People like that work with their heart. They care what happens to you. When I was sick, I kept saying that I was fine. They kept calling to check in. They know I don’t have a partner or older family members to take care of me. So, they took on that role.”

Anastasia has encouraged her now-grown children to come to BVMI. “It’s so comforting to know that BVMI is here. Because I am well, I can pursue my dreams and for that, I am so thankful.”