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A service for global professionals · Tuesday, June 18, 2024 · 720,909,924 Articles · 3+ Million Readers

How does child sponsorship build better futures?

So, you’re looking to sponsor a child but are wondering how it works — or if it works. Here are some facts about how World Vision child sponsorship offers a unique opportunity to connect deeply and make a meaningful difference in a child’s life and community.

When you support a child in need through World Vision, you join a community of passionate people around the world who are helping equip vulnerable families for lasting change. World Vision child sponsorship is Christ-centered, child-focused, and community-based, and for around $1.30 a day, you can help empower a child for a lifetime of change.

World Vision child sponsorship facts

  • Because of our community-focused solutions, for every child you help, four more children benefit, too. Funds are pooled for the sponsored child’s entire community rather than sent directly to a family in need — meaning you can make an even bigger impact.
  • Each community faces unique challenges needing unique solutions. We partner with churches, governments, and other local groups to address a community’s short- and long-term needs.
  • World Vision child sponsorship programs are designed to nurture the physical, emotional, spiritual, and social well-being of the most vulnerable children.
  • Worldwide, our donors support 3 million children in need who are registered in World Vision sponsorship program communities.
  • In 2023, we used 89% of our total operating expenses for programs that benefit children, families, and communities.
  • A foundational aim of child sponsorship is to empower communities to set their own goals and equip them so that progress made is sustained, and continued, long after we’ve left. It takes around 15 years for the community to sustainably drive development on their own. In 2023, 84 communities around the globe were ready to continue improving the lives of children and families without us.

How does child sponsorship work?

We believe the most effective way to support a child in need is to strengthen their entire community. Most of our staff work in their home regions. These local World Vision staff start by meeting with families in need and local leaders to set goals together. We then partner with the community to build a better future for children and families.

This journey plays out in three phases.

1. Building trust and laying the groundwork

We listen to the community to understand the issues hindering children from reaching their full potential. Community members nominate vulnerable children for the child sponsorship program. Then each child is matched with only one sponsor. This one-to-one connection is a powerful way to share God’s love as you pray for your sponsored child, write them letters and emails, and send photos and small packages to encourage them.

2. Building hope and skills

We partner with local churches, governments, and other groups to address the community’s short-term and long-term needs. Your monthly sponsorship gift is combined with other donations, including grants, to invest in the resources children and families need to thrive. Our integrated approach includes water, health, education, child protection, and economic empowerment, so every child can grow into who God created them to be.

In 2023, 89% of our total operating expenses were used for programs that benefit children, families, and communities, and projects are measured regularly for accountability and learning.

3. Building confidence for the future

Over time, you will see the impact of your partnership, not just in your sponsored child’s life, but also within their family and their entire community. The result is lasting change for your sponsored child and those around them.

You’ll witness the growth and can celebrate milestones with them along the way. Through emails and annual progress reports about their community, you’ll see that your support is helping change lives and empowering your sponsored child to dream about their future.

Equipped with new skills, resources, and hope, the community takes ownership of their future while World Vision phases out and moves to other vulnerable communities. Our goal is to work ourselves out of a job after about 15 years in a community or until development is being driven locally and sustainably.

Ready to make a difference?

Here’s how you can sponsor a child and join a movement dedicated to equipping families in need for lasting change:

  1. Become a sponsor: Start by looking at the profiles of children waiting for a sponsor. You can sponsor a child whose story, interests, and circumstances resonate with you. You can even choose a child who shares a birthday with you or a family member. Or, you can be part of World Vision Chosen®, where a child chooses you to be their sponsor.
  2. Contribute to collective impact: Your sponsorship donation is pooled with other sponsors to impact the entire community and help more than just a single family in need. This approach maximizes the effectiveness of each contribution.
  3. Build a relationship: Connect with your sponsored child and their community through letters, photos, videos, prayer, and more.
  4. Stay informed: As part of your sponsorship, you’ll receive regular updates, including detailed annual progress reports. You can also read these child sponsorship FAQs or discover impact stories.
  5. Meet your sponsored child: Sponsors who have the flexibility and resources can even arrange a visit to meet their sponsored child. It’s a life-changing experience — and we’ll help you arrange the meet-up.

When you sponsor a child, you are choosing one of the most personal, effective ways to empower children and communities out of poverty. As you sponsor a child in need, you build a special relationship that encourages your sponsored child and offers them hope for the future. It’s also an opportunity to live more generously and model faithful giving for your own children. Your support helps vulnerable children pursue their physical, emotional, spiritual, and social well-being, equipping them to reach their God-given potential.

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