PEARLAND, Texas - With the rise in violence as Russia attacks Ukraine, children with no parents are caught in the middle. There is a desperate effort to get them out of the war zone by those who want to adopt the orphans fighting for their life.
There are more than 100,000 orphans in Ukraine in 663 institutions in a country the size of Texas. The orphans in the private institutions have evacuated, but government-run orphanages are stuck.
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A woman in Pearland is trying to adopt from Ukraine after hosting them a couple of times last year through an organization called Host Orphans Worldwide.
"It is hard to have that love and desire to protect and I can’t be there. I can’t reach them, I am not even hearing from them," said Melissa Besk, who just a couple of months ago hosted three orphans ages 11, 12, and 16 from Ukraine.
"They felt like they have been part of our family forever."
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Besk was in the process of adopting them. Communication is now scarce. She shared an Instagram message from one of the girls that translates to: Mom at 2 a.m. are we have an evacuation I am really scared.
Besk says she is too.
"Losing the girls. Even though they are not legally mine, they have a part of my heart. Right now I haven’t made contact with the youngest two, Dasha and Albina, it breaks my heart. I do not know if they are ok. I haven’t heard. We haven’t had a lot of communication with that facility," she said.
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She actually visited orphanages in Ukraine last year.
"Those children are so desperate for any ounce of attention because the orphanage in Ukraine, they may have a dorm mother so to speak. There’s no maternal supervision or paternal supervision. When they go to sleep at night crying, there’s no one there to comfort them. With this, the war, they are truly alone," she said.
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The organization has members across the country, and they are all contacting their elected officials to get the orphans ‘refugee status’ in these government-run orphanages. Many who are right now just hiding in a basement.
If you would like to find out more about the organization and how you can help, click here.