Cantemir is a poor area in Moldova and children often bear the brunt of grinding poverty. It is named after Dimitrie Cantemir, a prince of Moldova when Moldova was caught in the middle of the expanding Ottoman and Russian empires. Those were troublesome times. They still are in many ways.
The more things change, the more they are the same.
I don't know what people used to alleviate their suffering in the 17th century. I have a suspicion that it probably involved alcohol or other drugs of choice. It is no different today. Without hope, parents succumb to alcoholism and neglect or even abuse their own children. And the cycle of addiction and sin continues..
But there is hope! Jesus said in His first sermon at Nazareth:
“The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim liberty to the captives and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed, to proclaim the year of the Lord's favor.” (Luke 4:18-19 ESV)
Mission Without Borders works alongside local churches to proclaim this good news. Providing food to the hungry, a safe place to learn for young people, and caring for invalids puts the good news into action and validates the "good" in the Good News.
If I ever get a chance to revisit Moldova, I hope to be able to visit more with these inspiring people and churches.