Child Sponsorships
I have been giving some thought to possibly becoming a child sponsor but am dubious about my money actually getting to the child etc.

Has anyone had any experience with such organisations?
Any recommendations would also be appreciated.

[SIZE="2"]The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams[/SIZE]
I havent done anything like that. But you can try if these site will help...

There is also criticism section in wikipedia.
IMHO, this looks quite promising site.
Stripe, I sponsored a child through Childreach for fifteen years. I chose this organization partly because it didn't have any religious affiliation. The US branch is called Plan USA. It used to have a different name.

How they improve the lives of specific children varies, I think, by country. My sponsored child was a little girl in Burkina Faso. She lived in a village where it wouldn't have been appropriate to give money to benefit only her every month, so the money went into a fund that paid for projects for the whole village - water projects, schools, etc. So although I wrote letters to her and received letters back (dictated to a case worker), the whole thing is misleading in terms of the way they advertise it. Those ads where they tug at your heartstrings by making you think you're going to help this specific little child are not being straight about what they do. I actually think it makes more sense to help the community, but I think they feel they won't get as many sponsors unless they can make you think you're helping a child. They're probably right about that.

Having said that, I still have the pictures of her with different family members they sent me every year of her as she grew up, and I still have the letters. The organization encourages you to visit (I never did), and they send you cards to fill out if you're not much of a letter-writer, to talk about what the US is like and the holidays that are celebrated here. It's not very expensive to do and the returns are pretty significant. I ended up learning a lot about Burkina Faso, and Ouinonga did tell me all about her daily life. Childreach also sends out a yearly report on where your money goes, and their overhead is not bad at all.

When I was a child (in the mid-sixties) I remember we sponsored a girl in Hong Kong for a few years, but she left the program early. I don't think she had a family, and she may have been living in a convent. It was a church-based organization but I don't remember which one it was.

Hope this helps - gilly

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