If you saw a big water tower leaking, how would you respond? Get 1000 buckets, and keep filling them up endlessly? Or would you work on figuring out how to plug that hole? Most of the areas in the world where we work present this type of situation. Building orphan homes is like finding a bucket to catch water spewing from a massive water tower. The conditions that go into creating the orphan problem are so large – corruption, poverty, disease, culture – it almost seems hopeless. It’s impossible to serve the orphan as an isolated case from the larger outside causes.
This is why we work with churches (community based organizations) to develop an appropriate “continuum of care”, which includes prevention, foster care, housing, training, and development. On community and neighborhood scales, these programs work to both stop the leak, and provide “buckets” for immediate support.
In Moldova, the local church is highly involved in anti-trafficking campaigns with the governmental orphanages (the main source of trafficked children). This teaches them to be on guard…gives them a real understanding of how the outside world works, and shows them that they can trust these “church types” when they are out of the orphanages.
This church-to-church model is designed to empower the indigenous church while working toward self-sustainability.