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 Christmas at the Sunny Day Orphanage in Annensk, Russia

   “The best part of living is loving and giving”, the old proverb says.  It is really wonderful when people who are successful in life do not forget about the less fortunate and generously share what they have with them.  This is the case when every year around Christmas our colleagues in Russia and America donate money for the Sunny House Orphanage in the village of Annensk to buy gifts for every child.  It has become a  tradition since 2002 for Kartaly Team to celebrate Christmas with the children.  The Sunny Day Orphanage consists of 53 children who live in five separate groups they call families.  Their ages usually range from 3 to 16. 

   Every Christmas holiday the “orphanage families” gather together and the children decorate the Christmas tree, set the table, prepare an entertainment program for their  Kartaly Team guests.  They wait for our team to present them with individual gifts, presents for families to be shared, sweets and many other things.

   Unfortunately the orphanage is poorly funded and kids lack elementary things so the gifts were meant to be something special that they would not have without our support. The teenaged girls were presented with different colorful clothes, make up sets, jewelry, nightgowns, some underwear and lady’s bags.  The teenaged boys received jeans, sweaters, cologne, socks, wallets, belts and school bags.  The little ones received candy, toys and some winter clothes.  Slippers and personal cups were given to every child since these things were in great need.

   It was really great to see shining eyes and happy smiles when kids opened their nicely wrapped presents with individual greeting cards attached to them.  The families also received gifts that they will share.  This year they were presented with two sleighs for the younger families and table games for the older children.  Since the children love to sing and dance, a wireless microphone was presented to the music teacher for the children to use when they perform.  After the children finished their entertainment program, Kartaly Team went to each family to spend some time with kids, take pictures, drink tea and eat cookies.  Everybody was really happy and did not want this celebration to end.  The holiday was rewarding to our team since the children were very happy.

Written by Inna Amelchenko


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