Stories: Children, Communities, Futures

What does it mean to sponsor a child?

Child sponsorship is a meaningful experience. It’s so much more than a charitable donation – it’s a commitment to changing the life of a young person and giving them their best chance to experience a childhood where they are safe, nurtured and have access to opportunity.

Becoming a child sponsor is the first step in a journey towards long-term, positive change, and here’s what it will mean for you.

Child sponsors become part of the sponsored child’s life

Geoffrey Fuller with his sponsor child in Uganda

Child sponsorship isn’t like other forms of donation and support. Child sponsors become an important and active part of the sponsored child’s life. 

“It’s not just about giving money, it’s about helping them help themselves,” says Geoffrey, one of our long-term child sponsors. 

For over 20 years he’s sponsored children in the countries where we work, supporting their education, health and wellbeing. 

Sponsorship can be a hands on experience for you; it’s not just donate and go. There are many ways you can get involved in your sponsored child’s life, such as writing letters, sending photographs of you, your family and Australia, as well as perhaps a small gift for the child and their family. Every child wants to know that they are loved, and by actively becoming a part of their life, they’ll know that they matter to you.

“Being a long-term sponsor and being able to build that relationship with the children has allowed me to follow Simon and Aber’s personal journeys as well as the progress of their communities,” says Geoffrey. “This is very special.”

Becoming a child sponsor means you will build a lifelong relationship between you, the child, their family and  community. It is meaningful and special.

Child sponsorship is a personal way to help reduce poverty overseas

As someone who wants to reduce poverty for children, you want to give support in a meaningful way. Deciding to donate is a very individual decision. Child sponsorship offers a personal journey , where you can connect with the impact you’re making on the life of a child. 

“I chose a child the same age as Jacinta as I wanted them to grow up together,” says Sue, a long-term child sponsor and staff member of ChildFund Australia. 

Sue sponsored Thom on behalf of Jacinta, her young daughter, as she wanted to teach her about how children in other countries and cultures live. She wanted her to know that compassion and gratitude are absolutely essential to living a meaningful life. Child sponsorship helped Jacinta appreciate what she had in life, and the opportunities available to her as she grew up. 

“I appreciate the small things and don’t take things for granted, like water from a tap and having my own bedroom,” says Jacinta.

Thom’s village became self-sufficient, and Jacinta knows sponsorship helped make that happen. 

Sponsors can measure the impact of their sponsorship

Two school students in India head to lunch break

Sponsors who become part of their child’s life and write to them will witness a journey of transformation. Sponsorship is personal because it is a relationship between a sponsor and child, which means you’ll see them grow, learn, and explore their dreams for the future.. The impact is clear and measurable. 

“I am totally overwhelmed with humility and yet so happy that he has become such a good-hearted man,” says Bronwyn, who sponsored Parashuram until 2005 when he left the program.

She followed his journey through letters and, after 12 years of sponsorship, Parashuram left the program at 21 years of age. He recently became the Assistant Commissioner of Karnataka, a senior position in India’s state government, and has dedicated a leadership program to his former sponsor. 

“You just don’t know the ripple effect that you can create from sponsorship, says Bronwyn.

Bronwyn saw first hand the end result of her sponsored child finishing school, staying healthy and experiencing the childhood he needed for a happy and successful adulthood.

Child sponsorship is a meaningful way to change the world, one child at a time

When you sponsor a child, you are changing the world for a young person. Their world becomes safer, healthier and happier. You protect them from exploitation and abuse. You partner with them to drive positive change and, as a result, they will live better, and reach unknown heights. 

Want to change the world, one child at a time? Learn more about child sponsorship here.

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