When Veronica and Ilie’s parents divorced, their mother moved to Moscow and cut off all communication. But Veronica and Ilie’s father, Vadim, continued to raise his children in a loving environment. In 2013, though, the family encountered even more hardship. While they were away from home, the ceiling of their house collapsed. To cover the cost of repairs, Vadim borrowed money from a local bank. Then, while repairing the roof, Vadim stepped on a nail—a small accident that turned into a major setback with months of limited mobility. It would take four consecutive surgeries for Vadim to properly walk again.
During the same time, Vadim’s liver started to fail. This required more treatments and medical bills, but Vadim continued working. Before the home repairs were finished, Vadim had to take out yet another loan. Soon, Vadim and his family were in debt and struggling to make ends meet.
Veronica and Ilie attending a CERI event.
As a last resort, the family moved into a spare room Vadim’s mother’s house. The house was unsafe and cold, especially during the brutal winters. Soon, Vadim made the difficult decision to take his children to an orphanage hoping to return for them once he had a safe place to bring them home to.
That was when Children’s Emergency Relief International (CERI) first met Veronica and Ilie. CERI has helped young people like Veronica and Ilie for 20 years across the country of Moldova, meeting basic needs and working to strengthen and support families. Our work has included slowly replacing orphanages in favor of in-country foster care and adoption, as well as equipping parents and caretakers with the resources they need to support their children.
At the Orhei orphanage in 2012, Veronica and Ilie enrolled in CERI’s foster-care program with our staff in Moldova. Their father, Vadim, remained engaged with the children and was also able to benefit from CERI, receiving counseling and case management services as well as parenting classes. Together with Veronica and Ilie, Vadim participated in Easter and Christmas celebrations at CERI, where they learned about God’s love and spent time as a family.
CERI’s support eventually included a sponsor for Veronica, named Hannah. She became a mentor to Veronica and even traveled to Moldova from Texas twice. As a sponsor, Hannah provided monthly support to Veronica even when she could not be there. The Sandus also received support for other necessities like food, clothing, shoes and school supplies. Support like this ensured that Vadim’s children did not need to return to an orphanage.
Much has changed in the small family during the years they were served by CERI. Veronica graduated from a professional school with a specialty in tourism and hospitality. Ilie continued going to school and secured a job at a nearby factory. Both children now live in their renovated home, with their father. As for Vadim, he remarried and became a father again. His youngest daughter is named Anastasia, which translated from Greek means “Resurrection,” marking the rebirth of their family.