The Story of Ruslan 

A story from Fountain of Life staff member.

Ruslan (not his real name) is a very experienced homeless man. He has been living on the streets for ten years now. He is a regular visitor of the Day center, a place where people listen to him and are willing to help him. The way he became homeless is typical for a lot of homeless men. He lost his job more than ten years ago, started drinking to forget his problems and then his wife kicked him out of the house because she could not stand the situation anymore.

Ruslan has been sent to Rehab centers by Fountain of Life’s social workers many times to help him with his drinking problem. He would do fine for some time, but then he would start drinking again and living on the streets. Besides coming for meals at the Day center three times a week, he comes in for medical assistance regularly. The nurses and the doctor have helped him many times with all sorts of issues. When he lost all his teeth, they even paid for a set of false teeth for him!

Two weeks ago, Margaret found him on the street, on a very busy intersection. He was half-naked and very confused. She took him to the center, gave him clothes and food.

Last week he did not come to the center as he usually does. Azamat, our director, found him by surprise on the street in the evening when he came out of a shop. The man cried and asked for help. Azamat bought him a sandwich and brought him to a safe place. At this moment we don’t know where he is. He did not want to go to a Rehab center again.

This story shows that giving food to the homeless at the Day center is much more than just giving out some food. It is giving attention to their problems, sharing the love of God for them amidst the bad situation they are in, and spiritual consolation. And it is not just on the three days the Day center is open to them, but also in between, when our social workers go out on the streets to meet them.

Especially now that winter is coming soon and the temperature is dropping quickly, help for the homeless is needed more than ever!

Thank you for giving so that other men and women like Ruslan can experience God’s love in this tangible way.