Archive for April, 2010

Naomi Martin HBOT Fundraiser

April 26, 2010

I was so touched by the story of three-year-old Naomi Martin and the challenges that she and her family face. My son had mid-range jaundice when he was born, but I was never aware of how much damage to a child’s brain it could cause, or that it could lead to Athetoid Cerebral Palsy.

I was glad to read of her many small accomplishments, including the ability to hold her own head up for short intervals. I was also encouraged to read that, if done early enough, her dormant cells could be recharged—as it were—through the use of a Hyperbaric Oxygen Chamber. We can only hope and pray that this is true in little Naomi’s case.

I was shocked, however, to learn that Naomi, her five siblings, and her mother have to travel every three months to have these treatments. Forty Hyperbaric treatments in only twenty days is a lot, and since they stay with the clinic owner during those visits, it must be a great strain on everyone involved. Having the expense of $4000 each session has got to be overwhelming—I know it would be for my family.

A personal hyperbaric oxygen chamber would be life-changing for this family. Since these treatments will have to be administered for years to come, the savings to the family would be incredible—the cost of the chamber is $4,000 less than the treatments for just one year. The comfort that this could give the family is undeniable. It would save them money, time, and anxiety, as well as providing hope for Naomi’s future.

The monies earned from this LifeNets fundraiser will be such a blessing to this family. I hope that all who are able will donate towards this worthy project. With 25% of the target fund raised as I write this, I am sure that it won’t be long before that is accomplished.

Lorelei Nettles

Revival Centre of Medical/Social Rehabilitation for Children in Chernihev, Ukraine

April 19, 2010

Of all the many projects that LifeNets supports, the one that seems to strike the deepest chord in me is the Revival Centre for Rehabilitation in Chernihev, Ukraine, only about 40 miles from the Chernobyl power plant that failed in 1986.  LifeNets support reassures the people around Chernobyl that this disaster, even though it happened so long ago, hasn’t been forgotten.

Damage from the nuclear power plant failure of April, 1986, still continues, almost 25 years later.  Those who were small children—or not born yet—still suffer from the effects of that disaster.   In the midst of all the suffering that one foolish decision 24 years ago has brought, the Revival Centre of Rehabilitation is there sending out hope.  The Revival Centre helps children achieve all they can, despite their physical and mental disabilities. 

It took ten years of hard work after the Chernobyl incident to open the Revival Centre, and it’s taken a lot of hard work and love by Dr. Vasyl Pasichnyk and his partners to keep it going.  It is definitely love and outgoing concern for the less fortunate that is the driving force behind the Revival Centre.

Dance therapy, music, Montessori therapy, massage, everything that can be thought of and afforded to help disabled children is being employed at the Revival Centre.  The Centre is bright and colorful and a sharp contrast to the drab grays of a country still recovering from Soviet leadership. 

Recently, the Revival Centre was visited by the outgoing president of Ukraine, Victor Yuschenko, who gave an award to one of the centre’s founders, Dr. Pasichnyk’s wife Natalya.  Obviously, the work LifeNets supports at the Revival Centre is doing good things and catching the eye of the world.

I hope I can visit the Revival Centre someday.  It appears to be a bright beacon of hope in a place where hope seemed to die in 1986.


Change For Change

April 11, 2010

Young people at the Lafayette, Indiana United Church of God

Most people would like to do something to help those who are in need, but sometimes it seems that the need is so great and our resources are too small. Or we want to teach our kids about dedicating some part of their allowance to charity, but even they can look at how much they have to give and know that those few coins aren’t going to get very far in even the neediest of countries. What do you do when you want to help, but you don’t have much to spare?

LifeNets has an answer: the Change for Change program. In January 2009, the Seattle congregation of the United Church of God decided that they wanted to encourage children to make donations for the Street Children program in Vinogradov, Ukraine. A member decorated a large jar and set it out each week, with the goal of collecting enough money to support one child per month. Members and their children donated spare change each week, and soon found that all those small amounts add up to a big benefit for the street children of Vinogradov.

The idea fit so well with the LifeNets mission that there are now several collection points in churches and workplaces, dedicated to various LifeNets projects. People are discovering that compassion doesn’t necessarily require large sacrifices; when we use our ingenuity and work together, small efforts can make a big difference!

LifeNets offers laminated signs to help those who are interested in setting up their own Change for Change donation point, designated for any current LifeNets project. Click here for more information about setting up a donation point, or here to read about the first Change for Change project.


Oasis LifeNets Nursery School, Lilongwe, Malawi

April 4, 2010

Howard and Ruth Elia

I work in an elementary school and am passionate about the difference that education makes in the lives of children. I am very excited, then, to read about the progress that is being made on the Oasis of LifeNets nursery school in Lilongwe, Malawi. This project was born of the lifelong dream of schoolteachers Howard and Ruth Elia and has been bolstered by the investment of $8,500 by LifeNets. The school, when building is completed, will be able to serve one hundred children, all between the ages of 3 and 5. It is hoped that the school will become self-sustaining with the collection of tuition for the students who will attend.

It is exciting to be a part of helping someone achieve a dream, especially when that dream will influence many young lives. The Elias write, “To invest in education has always been our dream. We can see such a dream turning into reality because of LifeNets who have seen us this far and proved that they won’t let us walk alone.”

Click here to read more about the Oasis project and to see photos from the Kubiks’ 2008 visit.