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Meet our Artisans. . .

Streams in the Desert - Ulan Bator, Mongolia

GERLEE is a single mother who takes care of her 5 children. Her living conditions are very poor but she has a soft heart and a gentle spirit. In January of 2015, Gerlee came to our project, Streams in the Desert, in the middle of  the winter.  She was very sick and couldn’t make money out of prostitution.  She had been living in the streets involved in prostitution for over 10 years.  When her husband died, her friend convinced her that prostitution was the best way to provide for her family.  She never liked the street lifestyle but she felt helpless to provide for her family, with her elementary education. Today, Gerlee is becoming one of our best workers making jewelry and cooking for the center. She is actively enrolled in our program where she is receiving help for herself and her family and learning job skills.
DOOJII had a very harsh life growing up.  Her father and brother were very abusive and would beat her.  At the age of 14 Doojii was sent to prison for 8 years because she was at a party where a by was murdered.  While she was in prison, no one from her family visited her.  When she was released she went straight back to the street life where she stayed for about 5 years until she came into Streams in the Desert in November of 2013. Coming to the project she started to learn to make our products and it helped her to be patient with us. She learned everything that we were making and now is the best worker in the sewing room.  We have loved her from the time she came to our project, she is very honest with everything. She is very responsible towards her work.  God brought amazing changes in her life and still changing her.  
TINA currently works as a seamstress with Streams. Before living at the shelter, she lived with her mom, stepfather, 2 sisters and 2 adult brothers in a Ger. The brothers were alcoholics, abusive and violent. Tina has lived a pretty rough life; she has been raped and beaten. Tina has a history of being trafficked to China. Tina refused to continue living in this darkness and came to the streams shelter. She has dyslexia but through streams she has begun to learn to read while studying with a professional teacher. She has a generous and soft heart. Through encouragement and empowerment she is living a life full of purpose!                                                                        
NERGUI was the very first lady into Streams in 2007. Nergui had been on the streets for 15 years. Her birth mother was unable to care for her and she ran away from that family when she was 14 years old to avoid an abusive stepbrother. On the streets in Ulaanbaatar the capital city, she spent the next 14 years of her life as a prostitute.                                       She got married on Oct. 3, 2009. Her husband began drinking again just 3 months after their wedding. In May 2010 she was diagnosed with TB and spent a month in the hospital and could not keep her job and began a long, slow recovery. At this point she returned to Streams for help and began training to make jewelry. In Aug. 2012 she divorced her husband in order to protect her son from abuse. Nergui is a survivor, super hard worker, fun, and entertaining!
KHISHIGT was adopted when she was a child. When she was a teenager she started to go out to find money. She went through a cross-cultural marriage where she was sold to an older Korean man to be a slave in the rice fields. Khishigt left one form of slavery for another and went back to Mongolia to become a prostitute. She was a part of human trafficking for about 4-5 years.  She had a pimp who tortured her.  When she came to Streams in the Desert, her life was in danger; she was almost killed by her pimp and she ran away to get help.  She came into our project in 2013. Khishigt’s journey has been a painful one, but she is now a redeemed woman and it is her talents that create one of a kind pieces!
NYAMKA'S parents died when she was 21 years old. She spent 10 years of her life on the streets and felt damaged socially, mentally as well as physically. She has one daughter. She started coming to Streams in 2012 and mid 2014 she decided to leave her old life completely behind! She is working with us while learning about her character and through faith has begun the healing process!                                                                                                      
TUYA'S parents died when she was young, which led to a lack in education. She met her husband on the street and soon they were involved in selling girls for prostitution. She was well-known Madam. Her husband and her stopped selling girls a number of years ago, but they still had many problems in life. After leaving this lifestyle they had 4 children but her husband was an, which made life remain difficult for Tuya. Until hope entered her life through Streams in the Desert. Through this opportunity she is able to be a strong influence to her children and continue to rebuild her life!                                                                


CHULUUNA used to live a happy and peaceful life with her husband and 4 children. But 2 years ago she committed a crime and was sent to prison. Soon her husband married another woman. In 2015 the Mongolian government proclaimed an amnesty for a number of prisoners; she was pardoned and released. She does not have any relatives to help her. Streams in the Desert took her in and is giving her a group of people that will stand by her side and encourage her. She is a committed worker with a kind heart for others!