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  • Doug Brendel

I'm trying to be serious here, kid

10 years ago this week, my wife and our youngest child Lydia Charlotte were in Belarus.

We visited (as always) the shelter for abused and abandoned children at Zhodino.

Friends of New Thing gave generously and faithfully to repair and remodel this facility...

A total of $100,000 over the course of a decade — dollar by dollar, year after year.

I was trying to pose for a photo in front of a poster about child abuse.

But Lydia Charlotte, 10 years old at the time, was having none of it.

She’s trying to stick rabbit-ears over the back of my head to make me look ridiculous.

Today, 10 years later, she’s 20, halfway thru her BFA.

I’m in slightly better shape, thanks to seeing too many photos of my belly, like this one.

And the shelter at Zhodino is a jewel of the Republic of Belarus...

A place that children’s workers in other towns visit for ideas and inspiration.

Hundreds of children have come thru this facility over the past decade.

They arrived traumatized, confused, hurting — but here they found love and care.

And a comfortable “home away from home,” thanks to friends like you.

More adventures to come!

Thanks for journeying with New Thing.

Much love,

Doug Brendel

(Photo by our dear friend Oleg Yarovenko)

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