A former sponsored child from our Kawambwa site in Zambia has become a valuable asset to a school for blind children thanks to his specialized teaching skills!
Fancy was born with albinism, a rare genetic disorder that affects skin pigment and vision. When Fancy was old enough to go to school, he attended St. Odelia’s School for the Visually Impaired, but his family struggled to afford school fees and other basic needs. When he was nine, Fancy was chosen by a Chalice sponsor, which was a great relief for his family. Throughout the years, he thoroughly enjoyed having close relationship with his sponsor, especially when they wrote to him and sent cards for special occasions. “I felt like I knew them personally,” he smiles.
It’s almost Mother’s Day, a time to honour the countless mothers who lovingly sacrifice and dedicate themselves to others. At our sites, we work with many mothers of sponsored children. We’re constantly moved by their overwhelming resilience in spite of obstacles, and endless love for their children.
Rosaline, a mother from our Tondo site in the Philippines, had always dreamed of being a professional seamstress. After she graduated from high school, she had begun a two year sewing course, and was on her way to entering her beloved profession. After six months of her course, she got married. Her household responsibilities became too burdensome, and ended her time in the course.
As time progressed, Rosaline continued to care for her household, and did not have time to work outside the home while raising her four children. The family relied solely on her husband’s minimum wage work as an electrician. Even though he worked diligently, the money was not enough to support their basic needs.
Our STAR site in India works with many rural communities in the state of Tamil Nadu. A great deal of families in these communities are affected with stigmatized illnesses, which makes it difficult for them find work and housing. Our site also works with many children living with cognitive and physical disabilities. With the right support, these children are able to access essential resources that help them succeed in school, such as nutritious food, medical care, and tutoring! Venkateswari, a young lady currently in our sponsorship program, is a shining example of how the strength and potential of each child can be encouraged through love and support.
Gender discrimination happens no matter where you live. Despite the efforts of the United Nations and many other organizations all over the world, this form of discrimination is still persistent in all areas of public and private life around the world today.
Our partners at our sites work diligently in their communities to break the many barriers caused by gender discrimination. Through workshops, information sessions and resources given to parents of sponsored children, progress is being made, especially in improving educational opportunities for girls.
Child sponsorship is not just designed to benefit a child in need; it benefits their entire family. Our approach is all about sustainability. With the right support, families can gain the tools and knowledge necessary to take steps towards a better future. The Bustamente family is an inspiring example of the lasting effects that sponsorship has on each member of a family!
Gladys and Reynaldo have five children, and live in the rural mountains of La Paz, Bolivia, a fair distance from the urban bustle of the city. Raising five children on Reynaldo’s income as a carpenter proved to be impossible. It was incredibly difficult for Gladys and Reynaldo to provide enough food for all of their children. This, in turn, affected the children’s ability to attend and succeed in school.
Katya, a young woman from our Ternopil site in Ukraine, has a favourite quote that she often reflects on: “If love is in your heart, you are in the palms of God.” Katya’s been sponsored for the past 11 years, and tries her best to spread the love of God with others. “The main calling of each person is to love others and be ready to help them, therefore fulfilling God’s will,” Katya smiles.
Looking at sincere, balanced, and thoughtful Katya, it’s hard to believe that she’s lived through so much tragedy and sadness. When Katya was just two years old, her mother passed away in a car accident. Katya and her siblings were left orphaned and heartbroken. Their loving grandmother adopted the four children, and tried her best to provide for a good life for them.
Since 2012, Chalice has worked with partners in Sucre, Bolivia to offer care and services to vulnerable children and families. In addition to sponsorship, our Levántate Mujer site is also involved in our gift catalogue program. At Christmas (and throughout the year,) kind Canadians can purchase gifts through our catalogue to be given to those in need. Thanks to our generous supporters, many children and families from our Levántate Mujer site were blessed with a variety of gifts this year!
Volodya is a energetic, hardworking 11-year-old boy from our Ternopil site in Ukraine. He’s in grade six, and his favourite subjects are computer studies and biology. He’s very social, and enjoys playing soccer with his friends and attending dance and drama club at his local community center. He adores animals, and enjoys taking care of his dog Alfa and cat Murka!
When Volodya was growing up, his life wasn’t always filled with happy moments. When he was born, his father abandoned him and his mother, Svitlana, who was left to raise her new baby alone. Volodya suffered with frequent illnesses, so the family had to spend most of their time at the hospital. Since they were homeless, they lived in the small hospital shelter for a year while Volodya received treatment.
After moving from shelter to shelter for over three years, Svitlana eventually found a shabby apartment that they could afford on her small income as a janitor. The building has no running water, and was in need of many repairs. Svitlana still struggled to pay rent, and the two often didn’t have enough to eat.
Our Madurai site in India first began in 1997 in partnership with the Sisters of the Cross of Chavannod. “We aim to empower the poor and downtrodden,” says Sr. Amala, our site director. “We work to identify the capabilities hidden within students and to find creative strategies to convert them in to very useful and relevant skills!”
Today, our Madurai site sponsors over 700 children. Two hundred of these live in the subsite area of Kodaikanal. In this area, many children faced barriers that prevented them from attending school. Continue reading
For children living in poverty, education is the key to a better future. In many developing countries, however, the schools available to children make it difficult to learn. Some classrooms don’t have enough desks or school supplies for every student. In some communities, there’s not even a school for children to attend.
In Kenya, elementary school is free to attend. Unfortunately, parents are still responsible for books and uniforms, which can be expensive for a struggling family. School infrastructure in Kenya is extremely poor; in many cases, classes are taught in makeshift shacks. Often, there’s no furniture, so children must sit on the floor. This poor learning environment makes it difficult for children to focus on their lessons.