Your tax-deductible monthly support of $50 (or $600 per year) per child allows a needy child to get life-changing help and support. Your caring relationship, grown through exchanging letters, tangibly communicates God loves them. Your financial support provides for your child’s education, clothing, health care and food security needs, while they in most cases continue to live with extended family who love them but can’t afford the additional costs. In return, you will be building a relationship with a child who will be forever grateful.
Sponsorship is the primary way we offer hope and a future to vulnerable children and families in Uganda. Here is the process:
The sponsorship process begins when a parent or guardian unable to provide for their child’s basic needs comes to us. If there is room on the waiting list our Ugandan director, Ivan, pre-qualifies the child according to MCM Board-defined criteria. An interview with Ivan confirms the child’s suitability for the program, asking for the child’s commitment to hard work in and out of school – effort that is critical to their success.
Once accepted into the program, children wait for a potential sponsor to submit a sponsorship request and commit to monthly support. The children, their guardians and extended family anxiously wait to be matched with a sponsor. There is a waiting list, and always more children than sponsors, so when the child is matched with a sponsor, it is cause for joy and celebration. MCM is well known in the village for all the gifts it brings the community and to be one of the children sponsored is a big deal. This is just the beginning of a fruitful relationship.
At least annually Ivan and Michele do a formal “check-in” interview with each child to ensure a thorough review of each child’s progress, and to make any adjustments to schooling or other care issues. Michele prepares a brief report to be shared with each sponsor. Ivan and Michele confer several times a week to address the needs of individual children as they arise.
Three times a year children are required to write a letter to their sponsors to share their progress, as well as their dreams and concerns, giving the sponsors a window into their lives. Sponsor letters in response are collected by the U.S. director, Michele, and sent back to Ivan for distribution to the children. These letters, and the photos that often accompany them, are treasured by the children who can claim a family across the world who loves and cares for them. This intimate exchange gives you insight into the details of their needs and lives enabling you to pray for them very specifically. Many children also pray for you and your family, so that they can give as well as receive in this relationship.
Will you consider engaging in this life-changing relationship?
Dramatic improvements in educational outcomes, better adult employment, increased wages, taking more leadership roles as adults – all of these outcomes started with being sponsored as a child. Research on over 10,000 individuals in developing countries from University of San Francisco economist Bruce Wydick and others confirmed the overwhelmingly positive impact child sponsorship has long term by following sponsored and unsponsored children in similar circumstances well into adulthood. (The sponsorship program studied uses a sponsorship model similar to that of MCM.)
“Child sponsorship also appears to be the great equalizer in education: In areas where outcomes are worse, … impacts are bigger.” Overall in the countries studied (including Uganda), “sponsorship makes children 27 to 40 percent more likely to complete secondary school, and 50 to 80 percent more likely to complete a university education.”
Lasting improvements in employment, earnings, independence and leadership qualities of those sponsored as children over those who were not sponsored was also found. “As a development economist, I am used to seeing very modest outcomes from aid programs,” said Wydick, “but we were amazed at the size of the impacts on these kids.”
“The patient nurturing of self-worth, self-expectations, dreams, and aspirations may be a critical part of helping children escape poverty,” the study suggested. They concluded that “the key to ending poverty resides in the capacity of human beings—and their view of their own capacity—to facilitate positive change.”
Ready to change the world?