Podcast: Haverhill Church Group Leads Mission to Moldova, Bringing Supplies and Hope to Orphans

West Church Director of Outreach Mark Cottrell. (WHAV News photograph.)

When it comes to reaching out with a helping hand, a Haverhill church is reaching out halfway across the world to help orphaned children.

West Church is sending 15 people today on a mission trip to Moldova, a small country sandwiched between Romania and Ukraine. Leading the group is church Director of Outreach Mark Cottrell. Speaking recently on WHAV’s “Win for Breakfast” program, he explains how the 767 Broadway church became involved.

“For a number of years we’ve supported a ministry in Moldova, a gentleman named Oleg Reutki—he’s a pastor over there—and he runs a number of orphanages. They call them transition homes, mostly young girls being ministered to them.”

Cottrell adds Oleg runs an organization called New Hope Eurasia. “He has invited us to come over and serve in the orphanages. We’ll actually be staying right in the transition homes. We’ll be bringing all sorts of different supplies. We’ll be bringing clothing and shoes, and all sorts of needed things that he would like to have us bring to the orphans. We will be running a Bible school for them in two different locations.”

Cottrell also says the West Church group will be doing some outreach, and serving Ukrainian refugees in the country. When asked about the safety of making the trip to Moldova, Cottrell had these words.

“We’re warned, but we are relying on our host Oleg to know the lay of the land and, if anything was bad, I trust him to say ‘please don’t come.’ But, there have been rumors and rumors of war for Moldova since the beginning of the invasion of Ukraine two years ago, and really the news hasn’t changed too much.”

To help with the trip, Cottrell says they received a generous donation from Reworld, formally known as Covanta. Reworld Haverhill’s Area Asset Manager Mark Van Weelden told WHAV the company is “pleased to be able to support the activities of these dedicated volunteers.  Hopefully, the kids impacted by these acts of kindness can see a world reimagined.”

West Church also received help with supplies, including from a dentist who donated 200 toothbrushes and toothpaste. West Church normally runs missions every year, mostly to Latin America for construction projects, but the trip to Moldova, working with orphans and refugees, is bringing in people who wouldn’t normally make a missionary trip.

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