ROOF was founded in 1998 to provide opportunities otherwise unavailable to children in Russian orphanages and to young adults who had grown up in the Russian orphanage system. Originally ROOF was a mission of the Anglican Church in Moscow; its primary founders joined the Orthodox Church approximately 20 years ago. All our programmes – whether related to education or social services – are inspired at their core by our Christian values and especially our high estimation of the value of every human person and his or her unique talents.
Initially, this meant hiring teachers and running various educational programmes to boost the level development available to children in orphanages. At one point, in 2001, ROOF worked in 13 different orphanages!
But as Russian government policies and priorities slowly shifted to resemble those of private charities like ROOF, “in-orphanage” education became less of an urgent need – both because government funding and strategy for “in-orphanage” programs radically improved, and because policy, in general, has shifted toward trying to keep children out of orphanages. Therefore, over the course of the time since its founding, ROOF’s priorities have gradually and steadily shifted toward transitional programs to aid orphanage “graduates” in establishing themselves in adult life.
By maintaining charity registrations in the USA and the UK, ROOF makes it possible for concerned individuals abroad to contribute to this meaningful work in Russia.