Letter from Maia Koval, Shirokolanovka Orphanage, September, 2001

Dear Best American Friends,

We want to write you about our gratitude, that you have helped so much for us to live better.

We can't forget the meeting, when you came to us in spring with presents. Thank you for your souls and hearts. Thank you for the concern about strange children. We give you our low bow and our endless thankfulness.

We received new things, bought with your money, to go to the summer camp: clothes and shoes. I had a good rest at the camp "Chaika" (seagull). This camp is very good for the rest.
We gained new strength, met new friends, had fun, went to discos.

When we came back to school, we couldn't recognize our dearest nest, where I have been living for eight years, and where I stay another year. Then I'll leave this cozy place forever.

The renovation has been done with your money. They have repaired the school, the dormitories, the workshops and the gym.

I myself do things of straw and also I like to embroider, to knit and to sing, and I want to have parents very much. I miss them very much as well as their caress, their attention and care.

I do well at school. True, everything happens, but I do my best. I have a dream to become a hairdresser. I can do haircuts. I can do beautiful hairstyles. I cut many children's hair at the school.

We celebrated the First of September holiday. Our friends from the tax administration visited us. They brought us gifts: copybooks, diaries, pens, but the main thing was the school uniform, new and beautiful, and very many sweets as well.
Also, our friends from the Region party came to visit us on September st. They had helped us to buy vacations at the camps for us to rest. Then somebody came to photograph us. They also brought us balls, skipping-ropes and sweets.

We know about your tragedy what happened in America. We feel great sympathy for you, and we see you are having hard times now. We held a line-up at the school. During this line-up, we learned about what had happened in America. We will hope everything will be fine, and we can see you one more time because we are the 9th grade students, who will leave this warm and comfortable home.

I want to write you a little and modest poem.

We wish you a long life and happiness
We wish the sun and the stars to keep warmth
We wish you to stay always in good health.
Let the joy and the sun look into the window
Let the door open for happiness and the good
Let you gain new force and strengthen your health
For peaceful and generous and long years
Let your days of work and rest be pleasant
And may you be lucky everyday and every moment in everything you do

Good bye, see you next time.

With best regards and great love to you,

Maia Koval

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