The former street children, the youngest of them is only 13, solemnly arrived in Ussuriisk alongside with their parents and mentors. It’s been the final part of this Russian stage of the bike action.
Let us remind you that this year the bike action has started from Baikalsk (Irkutsk area) in the 13th of June. And these days in July 30th the participants are crossing the finish line in Vladivostok, which is 2920 miles. The purpose of the action is very simple: former orphans and street kids ride their bikes around the world accompanied by their new parents and mentors. On their way they take part in different press – conferences, mass city events, meeting with publicity and local powers in order to show example how much the life of a kid can change if somebody grown up show up in their life who is ready to take them in their home and to help to succeed.
As a direct result – dozens and hundreds of families in each city made a decision to become adoptive parents, as Gennadiy Mokhnenko, the father of 3 biological and 32 adopted kids (the director of rehab center for kids with alcohol or drug addiction, and a leader of the bike action, stated at his meeting with journalists. The biggest part of those who responded to this call have already applied for adoption and are in the process of making papers.
“ 15 years ago when working with street kids we had nothing to do but to let the kids stay with us since this was the category of children have lived on streets for the most part of their little lives. My first adopted son who showed up in my life had the following a life story: his mom was an acrobat of the Moscow circus, in the soviet time the family was rather well off. But when the father of the family went missing the mother started abusing alcohol. Andrei’s oldest son killed himself and he had to live on street from the age 6 up to the age of 12. We found him in a sewer with some other kids who had a toxic addiction. We saw then that social service take them to the state boarding schools where the kids of this category don’t survive. They run away from there right away and get back to their sewers or stations….
So we started taking them in our houses. Presently Andrei is a graduator from the conservatory, the author of a solo album. There is a movie about him called: Diamond from a sewer”, Google it. Andrei grew up and now he is a very good young man!, – Gennadiy shared.
The manager of the project is convinced that the boarding school and soviet style orphanages should be gone as the past. According to him each child must wake up in the morning and be able to hug his Mom and Dad.
The chairman of the organizational committee of the Russian part of the bike action, the leader of the Alliance of initiatives “ Russia without orphans” Ivan Iklyushin told that one of the main tasks of the Alliance at present is to support the bike action that helps the idea of adoption to reach the big part of the population of Russia. He also pointed out that unity and mutual help is very important.
« This bike action can be accomplished only if we stand shoulder to shoulder, “- stated Ivan Iklyushin in his speech.
Next year the around the world bike trip will be continued in Alaska proceeding to Canada, the US, Mexico and Europe. The travelers will get back home for life only in 2016.