Update from Kim Hartzner as winter approaches | Mission East

Update from Kim Hartzner as winter approaches

Kim Hartzner, Managing Director, writes from Armenia, where he has been in charge of the Mission East office since August. The winter is closing in in a country where temperatures can reach minus 20 degrees Celsius. The cold is especially hard for five year old Marine and her mother who live in an unheated stone house with a mud floor.

Less than an hour from the capital Yerevan, Mission East is carrying out a health project. Last week I visited Marine, who is five years old and lives with her mother in an unheated stone house. The bare ground is the floor of their home, in a country where temperature during winter reaches minus 20 degrees Celsius (minus four degrees Fahrenheit).

Five of Marines siblings have died from poverty-related illnesses when they were between five months and one year old. Illnesses that easily could have been treated.

Marine and her mother have to get by on the equivalent of about 19 euros a month. In Armenia some food can cost the same as in Denmark and the family has not eaten meat in three or four months. This summer Marine almost died from a serious infection. She was only saved because the Mission East team found her and helped her to get treatment at the children’s hospital included in our health project.

In Armenia thousands of children are still living in poverty. They do not receive the necessary medical care or education to help them out of the desperate situation they are in.

The great need for help makes me want to help even more, and the Mission East team is doing an amazing job. We are planning a fundraising event and as well as our ongoing projects, hope to get wealthy Armenians and foreigners who live here to help us to help many more poor children.

November 2006 - read more in December magazine