In response to a resolution passed at the 2003 national Convention of the Fellowship of Orthodox Christians in America [FOCA] encouraging increased participation by youth and young adults in service-oriented Church-related projects, six young adults from three states met at the OCA Chancery here February 7, 2004 to sort, pack and ship over 30 boxes of school supplies and clothing to an orphanage in the Chernovtsy region of Ukraine.
The drive, conducted with the blessing of His Beatitude, Metropolitan Herman, was facilitated by young adults from New England, the Midwest, Pennsylvania, and the West, according to Ms. Lara Herzak, project coordinator. The OCA Department of Youth, Young Adult and Campus Ministry and the OCA Office of Humanitarian Aid assisted in the drive, which netted hundreds of clothing items, thousands of pens and crayons, and hundreds of reams of paper. The orphanage’s needs were discovered by the Metropolitan during his 2003 visit to Chernovtsy, where he had been hosted by His Eminence, Metropolitan Onufriy.
“Future projects of a similar nature are already being planned,” said Ms. Herzak, “and we hope that other youth from around the country will ‘catch the spirit’ and conduct similar service projects.”