Sasha Zenich is a former street kid and future artist and photographer!

Sasha came to "Pilgrim Republic" a few years ago. He and his three sisters grew up in a dysfunctional family: his father did some robbery, and end up in prison, and his mother was drunk all the time, and never took care of the children. She made them go the streets to collect cigarette butts, buy alcohol. Often, when parents got drunk, they would beat Sasha. Their apartment was a common party place, where neighboring alcoholics came to drink. Sasha started to run away from home. He first appeared on the street when he was 7 years old. He lived in basements, and sewer manholes where started to smoke, drink, and sniff glue.

Sasha Zenich: “If I came home from school, I saw only the drunks around: my mom, dad and other people in our home. We even had nowhere to sleep. I ran away frequently, for six months did not show up at home, at school, almost did not go to school. I remember once my sisters and I came from school and my mom went somewhere, the house was closed. On the street it was the middle of winter, and we are 4 days with my sisters slept on the street in a big hole “.

Sometimes the police when found the boy on the street, returned him home, but he would ran away again. There were times when my grandmother tied his hands with the belts, so the boy could not escape. Before Sasha appeared in the “Pilgrim”, he ran away from home 21 times. 

Once in Makeyevka he end up in a Christian home in the church and from there he was sent to Mariupol to children’s rehabilitation center “Republic Pilgrim”.
 Once here, Sasha’s life immediately starts to change. As he himself said later, he began to hope for a brighter future.

Sasha Zenich: “When I get to the” Pilgrim “, I was very happy! Immediately stopped smoking, stopped drinking and sniffing glue. The whole time I was here, I never ran away. Only I was afraid to come back home again … And even now I’m afraid … I want to have a normal life … This year I will finish the ninth grade and I’m going to go learn a photographer. “

In the “Pilgrim” Sasha began to learn, and has opened an artistic talent, he draws well, he began to attend an art school. Sasha is now 15 years old, he learns to play the guitar and photography. In the future, he dreams of becoming a professional photographer. Sasha has also participated in All-Ukrainian bike tour “Ukraine without orphans” – he drove the full distance of 1,000 km and as an award from the Alliance of “Ukraine without orphans”, has received a bicycle.