Making a difference across Ukraine

Oksana Voron

As part of the Mandela Day celebration, Aspen’s Ukrainian team embraced 4 projects in 3 regions of Ukraine. In the South-East Region the Odessa City Clinical Hospital #1 and Zaporizhzhia City Orphanage were selected as appropriate beneficiaries, while the West Region chose to support the Lviv City Orphanage #1 and the Central Region and Kiev Office dedicated their support to the Home for the Elderly Actors of Theater.

South-East Region:

Part of this region focused on children who need special attention and care at the Zaporizhzhya Orphanage, also known as “The Sun”. Founded in 1965, this facility cares for some 300 orphans, handicapped children as well as young members from improverished families. The team spent their time with the children playing games and participating in creative projects.

A second team visited the Odessa City Clinical Hospital #1, an architectural monument that houses medical equipment from the 19th century. The last reconstruction of buildings and the surrounding area at the hospital was in the 1960. This hospital is managed by some 175 professionals and provides emergency medical care to approximately 500 patients who are residents of the city and the suburbs of Odessa. Aspen’s employees contributed to the Odessa Hospital by attending to its gardening needs and they also painted the fence.

West Region:

The team from the West Region supported the Lviv City Orphanage #1 for children with mental disease and nervous system disabilities. The Orphanage has been functioning since the beginning of the 20th century and provides permanent medical care, rehabilitation and education for approximately 110 orphans and children who are mostly younger than 4 years of age and who have physical and mental disabilities.

Four employees provided the orphanage with cleaning materials and also transformed the garden, white washed the trees, painted fences and planted beautiful flowers to add some joy to the environment for the children.

Central and Kiev Region:

This region supported the Home for the Elderly Actors of Theater in Kiev. This Home is the first of its kind in the Ukraine and was established in 1959 to provide social and medical care for some 20 aged actors. The founder ofthe Home was national artist Natalia Uzhviy, who headed the all-Ukrainian Theater Society at that time.

The team painted the benches and improved the gardens by clearing them and adding colour with a range of plants and flowers. In addition, sufficient donations of food were provided to ensure that these residents received nutritious meals for a month.

The greatest contribution though was the opportunity to spend time in the company of some of Ukraine’s acting legends who were so grateful for the interaction, care and company of the volunteers that they went to great lengths to entertain them with snippets of performances from productions that they acted in many years ago.