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Christoph Lingg

2011-10-24

I booked my stay at hotel Gallery in Perm through Ost-West and can only recommend Ost-West as well as the hotel, which is clean, nice and charming!

Jussi Itkonen

2011-10-08

We booked excursion to Tsarskoje Selo for 6 people via Ostwest's website. Confirmation came the next day and guide Svetlana met us in hour hotel. She knew everything and we spent information packed 5 hours learning so much about past and also present in St. Petersburg.

Max Ockum

2011-09-30

Ich habe meine Transfers vom Flughafen zum Hafen in St.Petersburg und vom Hafen zum Airport in Moskau über Natalia Zolotareva gebucht. Der Kontakt war hervorragend. Die Transfers wurden pünktlich und zu voller Zufriedenheit durchgeführt. Vielen Dank an Natalia und Ihre Fahrer.

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Our Charity Eventsprint version

Our "Otkazniki"

Amongst the many unfortunate disenfranchised citizens of St. Petersburg are children, classed by society as “otkazniki”. These are kids who have been abandoned by their parents or whose parents have been declared unfit and consequentially lost custody of their children. With the increase of drug use and unemployment worldwide, this is not an unusual event anymore. What makes it real bad though is that, in Russia, such children come into state care which does not have sufficient financial and human resources to fully support them. Nice eh? Here is more. Some of these kids have been born unwell, physically, or mentally, or both. These kids pretty much get abandoned again, this time round by the state.

When an abandoned child gets poorly he or she is transferred into one of the state hospitals. There kids do get medical treatment but this is all they get really. There isn't anybody to take care of their educational needs or spare them enough attention . The impact of such neglect on their future lives is easy to figure out. As an amateur psychologist I would predict that they will grow into angry, frustrated, self-loathing people, who might turn to crime and/or to hard drugs – just like their parents when they had them.

The initiative of Ost-West was to support such kids - patients of The Hospital of St. Olga. They are the young sufferers of respiratory illnesses – asthma, bronchitis, TB - anything really. Most of them are chronically ill and undergo regular prolonged treatments on the ward for infectious diseases. They are aged from newborn up to as old as fourteen. Ost-West is paying for the services of two trained nursery nurses (Corina and Svetlana)  to come in and spend time with the children: playing games, reading books and generally giving them attention. It also turns out there aren't really many books or games or toys in the hospital. This problem has been dealt with too and help is on its way – not to worry.

The money we use comes from the piggy bank Ost-West had for buying Christmas presents for its partners and big clients. This annual tradition had to go – no more pressies, boo-hoo! Poorly kids will get the funds instead. However, its barely enough. We here in Ost West would appreciate if anybody would like to help too. If you are interested in helping please contact us. You also are welcome to write your comments in our guest book and tell us what you think about our initiative.

We visited the hospital recently and found one of the assigned nurses hard at work. Her name is Corina and she is good. A music teacher by degree she loves the challenge and the fact that she can make a truly big difference here. We took a picture of her with one of the patients – a lovely fella who goes under name Sasha but could be called a blooming comet for all I know. This chap never sits still and is quite a handful, although admittedly a lot less trouble for the staff since Corina and Svetlana's services kicked in. Hopefully this good work will continue. We shall keep an eye on it and will report on how things are going. This piece is just to give you a heads up really.