Friday, 19 October 2012

Odessa Project - What's it all about?

Odessa is situated on terraced hills overlooking a small harbor on the Black Sea in the Gulf of Odessa, some 443 km (275 mi) south of the Ukrainian capital Kiev.

It has a population of more than 1 million people. The city's location on the coast of the Black Sea has also helped to create a booming tourist industry in Odessa

Like most eastern European countries , Ukraine has a huge problem in the form of homeless children. It is estimated that there are up to 5000 homeless children living in the city of Odessa alone (source 'Odessa'). Many take shelter in underground sewers, which usually results in them turning to street crime, drugs, prostitution and other forms of abuse.

What can be done?Homes can be provided for these children, as well as helping them get an education and gain employment so they can stay off the streets.

What is being done?
Grace Baptist Church in Odessa has an orphanage which currently houses around 40 children. These children are given shelter, food, clothing and, most importantly, love. Now the Church are building a Transition House for the children to move into when they become teenagers, thus allowing more children to be adopted into the orphanage. Once complete, this Transition House will house around 70 young people as they seek employment and their own accommodation.

How have we been involved?
In 2008, some men from Gwersyllt Congregational ChurchWales sought to put their faith into action and organised a practical work project to help with the construction of the Transition House. Since then, teams of men have gone out to help with the building work and have taken finances for the building materials.  In September 2011 a team of men from Woodgreen went to Odessa with men from Gwersyllt Congregational Church to carry out building works at Transition House. 

This year teams have gone out in May and September and plans are being made to go back in May next year. All team members self fund their trip, all money raised by donations is passed on to the church in Odessa towards project costs. We do not deduct any administration costs from donations.

Who goes?

A very diverse group of men have gone out to Odessa so far, including a plumber, two preachers, a software engineer, a retired police officer, mechanics, civil servants, a student and a BT engineer to name just a few. The age ranges from early 20's to (early?) 60's. No building experience or knowledge is required as everything is learned on site.

How can I get involved?

·         Support this project in the future, email us at for more information.
 Thank You
We would like to thank you for your interest in the Odessa Project. All donations are used towards the project with no deductions for administration.