Having an unplanned pregnancy or being a mother and suddenly finding yourself without a home, support of a partner or the means to keep your child and the only solution offered is to abandon your child to an orphanage can be a scary prospect.


Ark of Hope helps teen and abandoned mothers become self sufficient by providing them a stable and living environment, educational support to complete school, parenting and life skills.  The ultimate goal is the avoidance of a repeat teen pregnancy and put the young mothers on a firm path of long-term economic independence.  



Beneficiaries: Pregnant girls from their sixth month and Mothers with children up to three years old.  Most of our Mothers are orphans who have grown up in an orphanage and have no concept of family or the importance of child play, touch and development.


Time of living at the Ark Of Hope (Ark): Time is defined for each mum individually. The maximum time is two years if coming with a new born. This is because a mother can put her child to the kindergarten  from the age of 2 years and would be able to work fulltime.


Goals of the project:

  • prevent children going into orphanages

  • break the cycle of life-long poverty

  • prevent repeat pregnancies

  • help mothers gain psychological, financial and emotional independence

  • secure healthy child development


Terms and Conditions of being accepted to ARK:

  • Each girl wanting to join the program must apply by filling out an application form, go through an interview process and have their character references checked out. 

  • They must sign a contract agreeing to the terms and conditions of entering the program.

  • We do NOT take in Girls who have a warrant for their arrest, girls with mental health issues, girls coming from an abusive partner or runaways.

  • Once accepted, they must go through a medical checkup before moving into the center.

  • They receive free accommodation, meals, hygienic supplies and medication if necessary.

  • Any Child Allowance they receive is to be spent only on the child - food, clothing and medical etc. (Approximately $100 per month) ARK covers the shortfall where necessary or if left over it goes into their savings account.

  • An individual development plan is established for each mother. This includes goals for health and wellbeing, medical procedures needed, psychological development, education and or job training, budgeting and goal setting. 

  • Mothers with children over six months are to get part time employment (a few days per week, or few hours each day) or start attending studying courses.

  • Once a mother is earning she is to start contributing towards her food 20 % of her earning. The rest 80 % and other income might be spent according to budget and for savings for the mothers furture.



FINANCIAL STABILITY: As our Mothers do not have support from family or partner and do not have a place to live, the most urgent need for them is to get financially stable.

How do we work towards this:

  • help prepare all the documents for Mother and Child to get Children’s Allowance

  • if Mother is an orphan – help her with applying for all documents for getting apartment from Russian Government

  • get the child in line and to get “pass” to the kinder garden for when the child turns two – at which stage the mother is able to work fulltime

  • Initiate the court process to apply for alimony from the child’s father

  • Set up a personalized budget and initialize a Savings Plan

help each Mother look for and gain employment

  • help with organizing child care by another mother in the program


HEALTH: Many Mothers didn’t get medical help before coming to the ARK, so our goal is to teach them to care about their health and help them to get medical insurance for getting free treatment in the municipal hospital.

How do we work towards this:

  • Create a medical plan based on the findings from the initial medical check-up and previous medical records

  • Give support in getting medical help, help find the appropriate doctors and places to attend

  • Help obtain medical insurance for free state medical care

  • Teach the importance of Personal hygiene

  • Educate on the importance of good nutrition


PSYCHOLOGICAL: Almost all our mums were emotionally, physically or sexually abused in childhood. These traumas influenced their psychological health which cause abnormal behavior, sometimes aggression toward other mums, staff or children. Instead of punishing them all the times for their emotional up-and-downs, we will work with them to help them heal from the childhood traumas. We believe that will also influence on the way they will raise their kids.


How do we work towards this:

  • Understand that behavior does not always necessitate punishment, but an understanding of why and provide help to overcome issues.

  • Individual sessions with a psychologist – regularity based on individual needs

  • Provide classes on child psychology so the mother understands the needs of her child

  • Provide classes on importance of appropriate touch and play with children


HOUSHOLD: As our Mothers often come from Orphanages or dysfunctional environments, they did not learn basic household chores, cooking, cleaning and hygiene. Our goal is to work along side them and teach them the basics for keeping a house and providing for a family.

How do we work towards this:

  • By providing education and lessons on housekeeping, cooking, cleaning and washing clothes

  • Each girl actively participates in the daily chores and running of the home


PARENTING: For all mums that coming to the ARK – parenting is a new unknown field. Taking in account the fact that many of them are not mature themselves, they need constant guidance and advice.

How do we work towards this:

  • Teaching about child hygiene and teeth cleaning

  • Teaching healthy nutrition for both the child and mother

  • taking in account psychological, mental and physical development aspects in raising the children

  • teaching mothers to spend time with their children drawing, making crafts, playing with clay, reading books and so on

  • provide training sessions by invited specialists


How do we reach our goals?

  • By providing mothers and their children accommodation and financial support for up to two years

  • By working through a personalized action plan with each Mother towards independence

  • Working with each Mother towards psychological health

  • Invite professionals  and volunteers for lectures and training

  • Helping write a personalized action plan and budget for when each Mother leaves the ARK

By providing ongoing emotional and psychological support after they leave the ARK

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Living Hope Trust NZ

P O Box 15479, Tauranga 3144, New Zealand

P: +64 7 574 2000 E: admin@livinghope.org.nz