“My father died, he was killed actually, when I was 9 months old, and my mom had challenges with alcohol. She wasn’t really parenting us well, so we grew up on the street. When I just began my interaction with HOPE Ukraine, besides getting a loan, I was really surprised why these people wanted to meet. Why they wanted to drink coffee. Why they asked some questions. Those questions challenged me, actually. The attitude they had was really very sincere, and that motivated me to keep up the conversations. They had a great something inside, something that I didn’t see, and I was curious.”
“At first someone came to me and said that he was selling his business. It was very small – 2 square meters in a mall. I offered one option to him that I thought would be good for him and for me. I told him that I don’t have the money to buy it, but if he gives me his business for 3 months, then I’ll make money and give it back to him. I found those companies that would give me the goods and then wait for the money to be paid later, and I began to make some money. So after those first 3 months I purchased his business location and then started another 5 small locations. Initially my income was $200 from this one location. Right now my business brings me $7,000.
“HOPE Ukraine [of HOPE International] is ready and willing to stretch helping hands to anybody, and I didn’t understand then, but I understand it now. That’s how Jesus treats people. As I was looking for success in business – something visible – I found it, but I found much more. I found salvation in Jesus, something that’s not perishable, but eternal. And even though I paid less attention to my business, but instead to studying God’s Word and to my family, my business became even better. I can see God’s hand in my life, and HOPE Ukraine has helped me to see that God has been leading me all this time, even in my difficult circumstances, and has been with me.”