Sunday, February 17, 2013

Stepnogorsk Children's Creative House

We have had another great, busy week, almost to the point of exhaustion!  We have received a request to help an organization for handicapped people to receive equipment for a hair salon.  The handicapped people will be able to come for services (free, or reduced prices) and provide employment.  So, we had this list of items (in Russian) and we wanted to see what the items actually looked like.  Come to find out, that the warehouse is within walking distance of our apartment.  Here's a few of the items we looked at. 

I love this child's chair

This is an awesome pedicure chair with massage and jacuzzi.  Maybe too awesome?!

Alan has been wanting to get a good shot of the traffic officers.  They use the wands to direct traffic and if they point it at a car, they better pull over.

OK, now for the real fun.  We had to go to Stepnogorsk on Thursday.  The church has provided some equipment for their children's creative house.  This organization has two separate locations.  When we visited before, we rode a bus.  This time we went by car.  It is 200 km out of Astana, around 3 hours.  The road conditions were OK part of the time, but in some places the snow was blowing onto the highway even though the plows were out trying to keep it out of the road.  At one point we came across a car that was stuck in the snow.  We stopped to see if they needed help, but they already had someone helping them, so they told us to go on.  Here's a view of the road at that point.  Probably a bad idea to get stuck out here.
This town was established around 1960 by the Soviets for nuclear and/or biological weapons.  Now, the main industry is mining. 
They were happy to show us their new equipment.  The dance teacher was especially thrilled!  She used to have to use a pair of scissors to get the CDs to eject from her old player.

And we got to visit with our dear Anastasia.  She has been living in Stepnogorsk for the past few months and we've missed her!

The second location is also very happy with their new equipment.  This young lady is showing her awards from participating in many festivals.

Then we visited the Balapan Children's Center.  This place cares for about 20 young handicapped children and has about 50 older handicapped adults.

This little girl is not able to walk.  We were able to deliver a wheelchair to her from the wheelchair project in Astana last year.

Everyone was very happy about the wheelchair, except the little girl!  It will take a little getting used to, I think.

This is the outside of the building.  They are located upstairs.

This is the chapel area that is being remodeled.  It will be very beautiful.

And a little chapel too.

On the way home, the snowplow came right by us.  There was only room for one car at a time here and the drifts on the sides were as high as the car windows.  We're very glad we made it there and back safely!

And I wanted to show the railroad crossing sign.  I think it's so cute. 

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