ADMIN: VOU has been posting Lxxx’s daily updates from Belgorod Dnestrovsky, providing a rich insight into life and ministry during war. Practically each post from the beginning of the war has included snapshots of counselors working tirelessly with the displaced victims of war – men, women, children, young and old – and without monetary compensation for their efforts. Lxxx was asked to tell the story of these ‘counselors’ who are making a difference in so many lives. Donations to aid this critical response to the war are welcomed (link at the end or the article).
From Lxxx: If we ask an average person how he imagines an ideal life he would probably say that he wants to lead a peaceful and joyful life, easily achieve goals and have good relations with people around. But hardly anyone can boast of such a life in the world full of problems and struggles.
A lot of people every day go through numerous challenges such as breakups, grief, parenting difficulties, family struggles, COVID impacts, etc.
More than a decade ago in Odessa, Ukraine, a group of Christian psychologists were brought together at a seminar led by Pathway Ministries organization and were encouraged for work and ministry. They found out that they had something in common, they all felt called to help people with their problems.
So, in 2008 we became an organization that we called Educational Counseling Center “Rodnik”(The Springs). We did this because in the past each of us faced serious problems and was able to overcome them. Seeing so much pain and suffering around us, we simply could not remain passive and defined our goal as taking care of spiritual, social and psychological health of people.
Since then we work hard to help and bring healing to wounded souls. The psychologists of our center provide individual counseling and group therapy. We organize teaching seminars and conferences to educate our clients and other psychologists.
People come to us with many different problems: relationship conflicts, addictions, stress and anxiety, teen issues, parenting, family problems.
The first years of our work were rather challenging. People in our society who grew up in the Soviet Union or were raised by parents with Soviet past were suppressed a lot and were taught to hide and suppress their feelings. People in our country have lived with traumas for many years. They were not used to opening their personal problems to somebody and seeking help. We had very few clients.
But the situation began to change after a while. Gradually we began to have more and more clients. We work with believers and non-believers, people of different ages and professions. And we are glad to see the results of our work, the changes and healing in people.
Our final goal is not just help people with their emotional problems and their relations but to build trust so that we could share with them the most important news that can give ultimate healing to their souls – the gospel.
On February 24, Russia started a war against Ukraine. This greatly changed the lives of people and the life of the country. Many people had to leave their homes and flee to safety. Many people experienced the bombing and occupation. The psychologists of our center are faced with a completely new area of work – the trauma of war. Fear, grief, uncertainty of future, panic attacks, PTS. Many of our clients today are children with different disorders caused by traumas.
We counsel online a lot because many of our clients live abroad now. They are homesick and have a feeling of guilt for leaving their country in such a difficult time. Fear of the future prevents people of making plans and come back to normal life. There are many separated families in the situation when mothers and children left the country and fathers stay in Ukraine. Separation is very difficult. Problems that people had before the war –worsened. We try to address the needs of people and help them go through this very difficult period in their life.
Individual counseling, crisis chats, support groups, charitable breakfasts and lunches and many other activities we do now to help people traumatized by the war.
Seven counselors work in our center now, we constantly study and try to grow professionally.
You can learn more about us from our website https://www.rodnik-help.com/index.php/en/
From the first days of the work of our center we have been led and guided by Pathway Ministry organization (http://www.pathwayministriesinc.com) , that helps us with training and support, provides materials and resources for our work.
Please, send your donations to Pathway Ministries at the link below designating your gift to “Rodnik”:
E. Langston Haygood,D.Min.,Ph.D. Pathway Ministries, Inc. 288 Huntington Parc Circle. Birmingham, AL 35226. (205)835-3325