You give faithfully every month to make sure your sponsored child has everything he or she needs to stay happy and healthy — essentials like food, clothing, medical care and educational opportunities. So, of course, you want to make sure that your child is also being protected during the current pandemic.
This blog will hopefully answer all of your questions about how child sponsorship programs are doing everything within their power to help keep your sponsored child safe.
Whether it’s finding creative ways to teach while schools are closed, giving out food to kids whose parents are out of work, or giving boys and girls a safe space to shelter in place, these programs are working hard to make sure your sponsored child continues to receive the best possible care.
First, let’s start with the steps that all sponsorship programs are taking around the world in response to the coronavirus. Then, we’ll break down in more detail what that looks like in different countries.
1. Social distancing. To prevent the spread of the virus, sponsorship staff is making sure your sponsored child avoids large groups of people as much as possible. That means that kids who once received food and other aid at community centers are now receiving that help by staff dropping it off at their homes instead. Most children who lived at boarding homes have been sent back to live with their families. Staff still visits them, wearing masks of course, to check on them and provide for their needs. In most cases, boys and girls who don’t have homes to return to have been allowed to stay at the boarding homes to shelter in place.
2. Masks, hygiene supplies, and additional cleanings. In addition to providing your child with necessities like food and medical care, most child sponsorship programs are now making sure they have access to masks, hand sanitizers, and other hygiene items, too. The children’s homes that are still open are also taking extra steps to make sure their facilities are thoroughly cleaned, and high-touch areas are sanitized as often as possible.
3. Temporarily suspending mail. Your sponsored child loves receiving letters from you, but to prevent the spread of the virus, some sponsorship programs have temporarily suspended mail delivery at this time. You can still write to your child online or mail your letters to our office, though, and we’ll make sure they are safely delivered if possible or forward them as soon as delivery in your child’s country resumes.
4. Keeping spirits up. As you know, social distancing can get pretty lonely. So, sponsorship staff is checking in on sponsored kids as often as they can, praying for them, providing activities to keep them busy, and reminding them how much you love them. Knowing you are standing behind your sponsored child is just the encouragement he or she needs to get them through this pandemic!
Here are a few examples of how sponsorship programs around the world are implementing these steps to take care of your sponsored child during the coronavirus:
In Uganda, schools have been closed for several months. Many kids count on the meals they receive at school. So, since they can’t come to school, school is coming to them! Their teachers and child sponsorship staff have been visiting the students at their homes to drop off much-needed food. They also provided soap and bleach for each child’s family so they could take steps toward keeping themselves and their homes free of the virus.
Teachers in Rwanda still want their students to be learning and growing even when classes aren’t being held. So, they have been sending worksheets and other homework for the children to do while they’re stuck at home. They plan to continue doing so until September when the government has stated schools may potentially begin to reopen.
Honduran schools are also set to reopen in September. In the meantime, sponsorship staff is visiting the children and their families every 15 days to bring them food and check on their health. It’s the rainy season in Honduras right now, so they’ve been making sure the kids have proper coats and blankets to remain healthy.
Teachers in Brazil have been using technology to keep in touch with kids. They’ve been creating YouTube videos for their students to watch so they can learn English, Bible verses, and other subjects. While most of the sponsored kids’ families don’t have computers of their own, the people in their communities who do have access to cell phones are usually willing to share. Whenever a new video comes out, the kids can’t wait until it’s their turn to watch and learn their lesson of the day!
Many kids living in one children’s home in India didn’t have anywhere else to go when the pandemic hit, so they are staying in the dormitories. Since they haven’t been able to leave the campus due to lockdowns, the sponsorship staff has come up with many activities to prevent them from getting bored. They even started a community garden of corn, pumpkins, and beans. In the evenings, they spend their time playing games inside. Their teachers are doing everything in their power to keep the children safe, busy, and healthy.
Just as you’re taking steps to protect yourself and your family from the virus, your sponsored child and the people who taking care of them on a daily basis are, too. You can be assured that your child is receiving the best care possible — and that’s thanks to you!
But many kids aren’t fortunate enough to have a sponsor like you. And since the pandemic hit and the Children of the World choir — World Help’s main avenue for recruiting sponsors — stopped touring, the number of new sponsorships has dropped 94 percent.
Today, you can help a child struggling through this pandemic without a sponsor. Click here to learn how you can help meet immediate needs for an unsponsored child for the next three critical months. You’ll even receive a picture of a child you’re helping texted to you.
Thank you so much for your generosity and for making sure that your sponsored child receives everything he or she needs — even in times of crisis.