Doing the laundry



I told you about the 100+ sick children, ages 7-15, at the boarding school in Glussk, Belarus.
(You can see the original photo report here.)

Friends of New Thing gave generously to provide closets and bedding for some of the children’s bedrooms.

Money is so tight, the teachers hang all the wallpaper, and children sew all the curtains.

I’ve also learned that the children do their own laundry — by hand.

Directory Anatoly has asked us if we could provide a washing machine, a couple of ironing boards and irons, and four folding clothes-drying racks.
(They’ve turned a big radiator on its side to use as a dryer in cold weather.)

A generous ministry group, learning of this need, have already provided $426 for a washing machine.
I hope New Thing can provide the rest.

It will take a total of $314.
That’s $136 for four dryers, $92 for two irons, $86 for two ironing boards.

If you can help, I’ll be very grateful.
And I know Anatoly and his staff — and more than anyone, the children — will be grateful too.

I hope to hear from you soon.
Thanks for journeying with us!

Much love,
Doug Brendel

Going first


Greetings from Karl Marx Street!
We’ve arrived safely in Minsk, and our 13-year-old Lydia is already out ahead of me on photo reports.
She’s started a blog for her friends. You can check it out here if you wish.
My (grown-up) photo reports will begin coming your way soon.
Thanks for journeying with us!
Much love,
Doug Brendel

Good news out the door


We’re getting ready to leave for Belarus, but good news caught us before our departure!

A generous couple in California saw my photo report from Chekhovshchinskaya back in February — where we visited a boarding school for children with disabilities.

One detail in the report: “The kitchen is sorely in need of help. Pots, pans, cutlery, and other implements are ancient, and so far below ‘code’ that the government has actually fined the school for noncompliance.”

Without any more prompting than this, our friends sent us an amazing $1,000 gift to help with kitchenware.

Inspired by such generosity, vocalist Vicki McDermitt and her friends at MSW (“Music Serving the Word”) just gave the remaining $1,400 to meet the entire need!

When I get to Chekhovshchinskaya in a few days, the director and her staff — and most of all the children — will be celebrating! (And of course, I’ll post photos.)

I’m grateful to everyone who supports this work of compassion among the people of Belarus.

Thanks for journeying with us!
Photos to come!
Much love,
Doug Brendel

Lydia’s leaving too


One more day, and we’ll be gone.
My wife Kristina, our daughter Lydia, and I are leaving for Belarus.

It will be my 32nd trip to Belarus, Kristina’s 28th, and Lydia’s 17th.
Lydia, now 13 years old, has been visiting Belarus since she was 7 months old!

In some ways, she’ll be the most important member of our team.
When she walks into a children’s shelter, or meets a government official, it’s no longer just “the Americans” visiting.
Now, it’s “Wow. They even brought their child. These people really care.”

And we do. Lydia included.
She continually pushes us to let her go back to Belarus.

At the moment, we’re focused on air fares and travel arrangements.
If you’d like to take part in this adventure by giving a gift of support, we’d be grateful.

In any case, you’ll see Lydia in the days ahead, through our photo reports.
In the meantime, have a wonderful Passover/Easter!
Thanks for journeying with us!

Much love,
Doug Brendel

P.S. Here are a few photos of Lydia in Belarus over the years.

3 tons of corn flakes!

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Time for breakfast!

Our “Response of the Heart” team in Minsk just took delivery of a truckload of humanitarian aid from Germany.

* 7 tons of clothing and shoes
* 2 tons of furniture
* and 3 tons of Kellogg’s Corn Flakes!

(Which do you think is going to thrill the children of Belarus the most?)

These wonderful gifts will be distributed in the days ahead with special focus on large families (including foster families), disabled people, and the elderly.

How does it happen? It happens thanks to friends like you, supporting New Thing!

Thanks for journeying with us!
Much love,
Doug Brendel