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This Is Your Family!

photo showing Alcyon holding MariaNot long ago Kent Greve, ICCs international development director, had a conversation with one of the caregivers at the children’s village in Romania.

Your compassionate gifts provide loving, high-quality care-givers for the children and orphans you support.

Earlier this year, I visited the ICC children’s Village in Romania and had the opportunity to speak with Gabi Zamphir, who serves as an “Aunt” in one of the children’s homes.

Your generosity allows Gabi to provide loving, incredible support to the children. You’re going to love Gabi and feel good that she is playing a vital role in the lives of the children you support!

Kent: How long have you worked with ICC Romania?

Gabi: I’ve worked here since 2004. That’s eleven years. First I worked with the little babies. After that I worked in the kitchen. Then I worked with the middle-aged children. I also worked with the older children and in the kindergarten. I was the educator. Now I’m an aunt.

Kent: What position did you like the most?

Gabi: Most of all I enjoyed working as the teacher in the kindergarten. But I also enjoy working with the girls. I have one son. One of the ICC girls told me, “Your son will grow up and get married and you will be alone. You can take me.” I like that idea. I consider these ICC girls as my girls.

Kent: What do you like about working here?

Gabi: The relationship with the staff and the kids is like a family. It has been very helpful for me to be here with all these people around. If they weren’t here, maybe I wouldn’t stay in this area. There isn’t anything else to keep me here, because I am not from here.

My husband died and quite some time later Gabriela (ICC Romania’s administrator) ask me how I was. I told her, “It is difficult because I have no one.” Gabriela responded to her, “What is here? This is your family!” I have taken that to heart.

Kent: What are your greatest challenges working here?

Gabi: The most challenging thing is to see the children growing up and to see the result of your work. Sometimes when I am upset because of something the children have done wrong, I tell them that I can’t see the positive results of my work.

And then the girls reply, “That is not true. We are not that way.” They apologize and try to change. Sometimes the girls come and say, “We are sorry for you.” I ask them why. They say, “Because we are not always as we should be.”

Sometimes when I have personal troubles I would share this with girls. They would tell me, ”We are praying for you.” It’s comforting to know that the kids are praying for me because I believe that God listens to the children’s prayers.

Kent: Do you have a particular memory or memories that show how important this work is for the children?

Gabi: Very often the girls come around me and ask me things about the future. They tell me their worries and ask my advice in many different situations. I think it’s very important what I teach them because on that depends their future.

Christmas Eve is my birthday. I had a difficult discussion on that day with the girls because they had misbehaved. I sent them to their rooms to sleep. After I finished my work, I went into my bedroom.

At 12 o’clock at night there was a knock at the door. It was one of the girls. I took her by the hand and lead her into the living room. When I entered the room, all the girls were all nicely dressed. They were out of their pajamas. They had prepared a large poster with all their hands on it. It was for my birthday. I was impressed by their demonstration of love to me even though I had a difficult discussion with them.

I hope you can see — through Gabi — what a difference your support makes in the lives of the children! After the interview, I thanked Gabi for coming to talk to me — especially since it was her day off. She was gracious and let me know it was no problem. Then she said, ”I’m working today (at home) making sweet bread. I’ll bring it to the girls tomorrow.” What a wonderful spirit of self-sacrificing love!

That is the spirit of the founders of this ministry—and of YOU because your support makes it all possible. Gabi would not be able to love and guide the children if it wasn’t for you. Thank-you!

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