As we say goodbye to 2020, we are also saying goodbye to our CEO of 7 years, Debbie. As her time with Love Russia comes to an end, new CEO, Anna, has been appointed. We spent some time reflecting on the values and practices she has brought to us as a charity...
A heart of generosity:
Debbie knows we are given resources not to hold onto, but to share. This work was on her heart and she had personal contact with many of those we would help including a young orphan mum Anya.
Standing by orphans not just in childhood, but in adulthood too:
Debbie first met Anya as an orphan at a Love Russia summer camp where her teaching and leadership skills really benefitted both the orphans and the volunteers. We still know and support many ex-summer campers as adults. There is a special bond between Debbie and the young orphans she encountered at camp as they treasure these memories even now.
Being a friend:
She talked frankly to orphans about life and how much they are loved... and these young people loved her back for the compassion, time and attention she gave them.
Getting people involved:
Through forming friendships, visiting churches and groups as Debbie spoke about the work and rallied support.
Bringing people together:
After more than two decades of Love Russia, Debbie brought together all our mentors in one place at the same time. We know that supporting the vulnerable, particularly orphans and those fighting addiction, is challenging work and forming this community felt like 'a problem shared'. To maintain this we have begun holding Zoom meetings with all our mentors for regular times of prayer.
Unwavering faith in God:
Debbie’s leadership has been marked by her faith that God will provide. One such project was a decision to launch an appeal for a new transition home in 2016. The funding needed seemed out of reach but Debbie was convinced God would provide - and He did! Because of this, there is now a home that Yan and Nadya can use for orphans who are in danger of becoming homeless - a real blessing. We're grateful for what this has taught us and we'll continue to trust our God who has His hand in this ministry, even when facing projects that seem like a huge mountain to move… like the current crisis centre build!
From all the team, thank you Debbie! 💜
We hope to do you proud in the years to come as we listen to God and continue making a difference to orphan mums in poverty and orphans in need of a helping hand.