Sponsorship is the primary way we offer hope and a future to vulnerable children and families in Uganda. Here is how it works:
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.