The OM team in Odessa started small in 2006 with a couple from South Africa, Stéfan and Hensie van der Merwe. For the first three years the work of the team centered only around church planting initiatives until 2012 when they partnered with a local charity foundation called “Heritage” working mainly with orphans. This partnership served to see the orphan ministry of Heritage grow from working with 5 orphanages to partnerships with 17 churches serving in 18 orphanages in the Odessa province in 2018.
We are also blessed with many volunteers, short-term participants and interns serving with us throughout the year.
Our ministry in Odessa involves church planting initiatives in the Northern part of the Odessa province where there are 66 villages and less than 10 churches. We likewise continue to work with risk children, training of volunteers, outdoor, summer camp ministry much more.
Since 2014 we are also involved in, as are the other OM teams in Ukraine, with ministering to war affected. This includes humanitarian aid, psychological help for wounded and returning soldiers and their families, legal help, housing and evangelical outreach.