Tag Archives: help children

Easing the Burden on Families in Santiago

Spanning over 2,000 miles of South America’s western coastline, with deserts in the north, rainforests in the south, and the snowcapped peaks of the Andes Mountains ranging throughout, Chile is a stunning country.

Children with disabilities receive support thanks to the Handicapped Children’s Center.

Yet despite its natural beauty and reputation as politically progressive when it comes to human rights, Chile suffers from excessive inflation and an ever-increasing unemployment rate. Due to these economic realities, millions of Chileans are desperately poor.

A big telethon in Chile

The anguish typically associated with poverty becomes even starker when impoverished families are caring for a disabled child, such as the families with children at our affiliated project, the Handicapped Children’s Center in Santiago.

Thankfully, children with various disabilities receive treatment and support in an educational environment and help from their sponsors at the Center.  Without the much-needed aid the Center provides, disabled children and their families would have nowhere to turn to receive services and resources they so desperately need.

Beyond support from our sponsorship program, the Handicapped Children’s Center receives funding year-round thanks to Teleton, Chile. Teleton is a charity event held in various locations around the country in the first week of December. During the event, Chilean television networks hold a 27-hour telethon to raise money to help children with developmental disabilities. Since its inception in 1978, over $286 million has been raised, and 13 rehabilitation centers have been built all around Chile. It is the world’s most-watched telethon.

Because the Handicapped Children’s Center is a well-funded organization, it provides children and young adults up to age twenty years old with medical care and therapy for free.

Free care for kids in need

Because the Handicapped Children’s Center is a well-funded organization, it provides children and young adults up to age twenty years old with medical care and therapy for free. The Center is equipped to provide care and support to children suffering from the effects of polio, congenital disabilities, Downs Syndrome, and other mental and physical handicaps.

The Handicapped Children’s Center is located in a wing of a local hospital in Santiago called Teleton. Teleton is a large, modern building, comprising of examination rooms, physical therapy, a swimming pool, and a center for making prosthetic aids, which are provided to children free of charge. The Center is the rehabilitation wing of the hospital. Transportation to and from the facility, when needed, is also offered at no cost to families.

New surgery techniques are helping disabled children in Chile to walk normally again.

The staff includes physical therapists, orthopedists, podiatrists, neurosurgeons, urologists, dentists, occupational therapists, teachers, psychologists, social workers, nurses, audiologists, and a full prosthetic staff. The Center emphasizes self-care and independence in its therapy, and families are encouraged to play an active role in the children’s rehabilitation. The goal is to prepare the Center’s participants to become entirely independent at school, at home, in the workforce, and society. Children who are able to attend local public schools to learn independence, and those who are not able to due to their disabilities are educated at the Center.

Helping children to walk

The support children receive at the Handicapped Children’s Center is individualized, involving physical and recuperative therapy as well as psychiatric care. Children also enjoy arts programs as a part of their participatory therapy. Doctors, nurses, technicians and nurses are available with access to robotics technology, providing the best possible support for maximum recovery.

Additionally, special new surgery techniques have been performed on children with physical limitations so they may walk normally. Recently, three children that are enrolled in the Children Incorporated program have benefited from the surgery with staggering results.

Along with the care they receive at the Center, sponsored children receive school supplies, food, and clothing and transportation allowances so they can participate in regular therapy sessions. Over the years, children and their parents have expressed gratitude for the support they received from sponsors, as it lowered the family burden on treatment expenses.

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How do I sponsor a child in Chile?

You can sponsor a child in Chile in one of three ways: call our office at 1-800-538-5381 and speak with one of our staff members; email us at sponsorship@children-inc.org; or go online to our sponsorship portal, create an account, and search for a child in Chile that is available for sponsorship.

SPONSOR A CHILD

Welfare in the Wake of Disaster

Built in response to the devastation of Hurricane Mitch in Honduras more than twenty years ago, our affiliated project El Refugio Welfare Center continues to support children in the rural town of El Progreso to this day.

In 1998, Hurricane Mitch claimed thousands of lives, causing catastrophic flooding and landslides. It remains the second deadliest Atlantic hurricane on record, causing over 11,000 fatalities in Central America — 7,000 of those being in Honduras alone. The damage was so extensive that the Honduran president estimated that the storm set the nation’s economic development back 50 years.

Recovering after devastation

Over the last two decades, the progress of rebuilding homes and schools in El Progreso has been very slow. Residents still grapple with the aftershocks of homelessness, disease and heightened poverty.

Yet despite the difficulties, local children who attend the El Refugio Welfare Center can rely on support from administrators — as well as their Children Incorporated sponsors — for a consistent supply of food, clothing and educational materials.

Yet despite the difficulties, local children who attend the El Refugio Welfare Center can rely on support from administrators — as well as their Children Incorporated sponsors — for a consistent supply of food, clothing and educational materials.

A special thank-you

At our office in Richmond, Virginia, we often receive pictures and video updates from our volunteer coordinators about the impact that sponsorship has on children in our program. Sometimes, these personal communications from our affiliated projects are simply just a way to say “thank-you” to our sponsors for all that they do to help children in need.

Recently, our volunteer coordinator at El Refugio sent a short video of our sponsored children to thank us — as well as all of our supporters — for twenty-years of changing the lives of kids in Honduras. We at Children Incorporated are equally grateful that, thanks to our donors and supporters, we can hopefully continue to support children at El Refugio for the next twenty years.

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How do I sponsor a child in Honduras?

You can sponsor a child in Honduras in one of three ways: call our office at 1-800-538-5381 and speak with one of our staff members; email us at sponsorship@children-inc.org; or go online to our sponsorship portal, create an account, and search for a child who is available for sponsorship.

SPONSOR A CHILD

 

Escaping a Poor Education

In the town of Santa Tecla, located six miles west of El Salvador’s capital, San Salvador, our affiliated project, the Marillac School is providing children with the opportunity to receive an education — and a quality one at that.

Communities and schools around the world face barriers in providing children with a quality education.

Founded in 1940 by the Sisters of the Order of St. Vincent de Paul, the school serves as not only an escape from the harsh realities local students face growing up in poverty but an escape from poor public education or no education at all.

Considered a semi-private institution, the administrators of the Marillac School — with sponsorship support from the Children Incorporated program — work hard to ensure that kids are receiving basic needs and the best education that they can provide. This gives our sponsored and unsponsored children the opportunity to succeed.

What constitutes poor education?

Children at the Marillac School during recreation time

Communities and schools around the world face barriers to providing children with a quality education. Lack of adequate funding to educational institutions can lead to overcrowded classrooms with little or no resources for students. Untrained teachers, lack of proper food and improper classroom facilities can also significantly affect children’s ability to learn.

The consequences of an inadequate education

What are the consequences of an inadequate education? Poor education can lead to illiteracy. It also inhibits children from qualifying for higher education or being prepared to join the workforce later in life. Children who aren’t properly education tend to be less healthy than those who do and are susceptible to turning towards crime and remaining in poverty in adulthood.

A better chance at a future

For impoverished children around the world, like those at the Marallic School, the benefits of quality education are tremendous.

Higher quality of education are associated with positive outcomes such as better health and well-being and a greater interest in politics and social issues. Students who attend quality schools gain a competitive advantage at getting jobs upon graduation, which can lead to a higher income and the chance for a family to break the cycle of poverty. Quality education also can discourage crime because when educated, children feel a sense of hope and opportunity for a brighter future for themselves and their loved ones.

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How do I sponsor a child in El Salvador?

You can sponsor a child in El Salvador in one of three ways: call our office at 1-800-538-5381 and speak with one of our staff members; email us at sponsorship@children-inc.org; or go online to our sponsorship portal, create an account, and search for a child in El Salvador that is available for sponsorship.

SPONSOR A CHILD

 

A Blooming School in El Salvador

Abundant in rivers, lakes and fertile, tropical farmland, El Salvador’s natural beauty traverses a vast central plateau bordered by Pacific coastal plains to the south and rugged mountains to the north. For centuries, several Mesoamerican nations called this land home, including the Lenca, Olmec, Maya and Pipil/Cutcatlec.

“Santa Luisa is blooming. They have added new classrooms for the children. There were new labs for skills training programs, and a small kitchen was built as well,” said Luis.

However, this small and densely populated Central American nation is particularly susceptible to natural disasters such as earthquakes and volcanic eruptions, and has been plagued by chronic political and economic instability for more than a century.

High unemployment rates, rising inflation, organized crime and a soaring birthrate leave many Salvadorans living in abject poverty. The border town of Sonsonate — where our affiliated project Escuela Santa Luisa is located — is one of many places affected by these afflictions.

A school to be proud of

Nearly a century ago, Sisters of the Daughters of Charity established Escuela Santa Luisa to provide a safe haven and sound education for the orphaned, abandoned and impoverished children of Sonsonate. The school continues its mission today helping children in need — including the more than 60 children our sponsors support at the project.

A sponsored child at Escuela Santa Luisa

On a recent visit to El Salvador, our Director of International Programs, Luis Bourdet, visited with our volunteer coordinator Sister Marta at the school. Sister Marta took Luis on a tour of the grounds to show him the renovations that had taken place at Escuela Santa Luisa that made her very proud.

“Santa Luisa is blooming. They have added new classrooms for the children. There were new labs for skills training programs, and a small kitchen was built as well,” said Luis.

While on their tour, Sister Marta took the opportunity to mention to Luis some additional improvements she would like to see happen — ones that the school did not currently have funding of their own to complete.

Our Hope in Action Fund to the Rescue

“The school’s biggest need now is to install a roof in the playground of the school, which they want to use to protect the children from rain and excessive sun. It will mean that the playground can be used all year long and that it can double as a place for students, parents and school administrators to hold meetings,” explained Luis.

Luis felt strongly that anything that could be done to improve the school would also help the children be more prepared, focused and active in their learning — all things that can lead to academic success. He made up his mind before their meeting was over that he would propose using donations to our Hope in Action Fund to help Escuela Santa Luisa continue with their important improvements.

A new roof for a special school

Not long ago, Luis received pictures of the new roof build at Escuela Santa Luisa. Luis commented by saying, “The cover is truly large, and will benefit the children during rainy days and very hot sunny days. The school can now also host large assembly activities with parents and students. I am glad Children Incorporated could provide this support for the benefit of so many children at the school.”

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How do I sponsor a child in El Salvador?

You can sponsor a child in El Salvador in one of three ways: call our office at 1-800-538-5381 and speak with one of our staff members; email us at sponsorship@children-inc.org; or go online to our sponsorship portal, create an account, and search for a child in El Salvador that is available for sponsorship.

SPONSOR A CHILD

Understanding South Korea

South Korea sits in the lower half of a mountainous peninsula in East Asia. Although it emerged as an autonomous country in the aftermath of World War II, its rich culture and heritage reach back thousands of years.  Today, this nation (with a population density ten times higher than the global average) is renowned for its technological advancements.

Many orphaned children needs support with basic needs to ensure they are able to get an education and receive the same opportunities as other children in South Korea. 

However, more than half a century after the Korean War armistice, South Korea is still haunted by the ghosts of its turbulent past.  The Korean War (1950-1953) devastated South Korea, claiming hundreds of thousands of lives — both military and civilian — and leaving thousands of children orphaned. Despite having a relatively low child poverty rate, especially compared to developing countries, many orphaned children need support with basic needs to ensure they are able to get an education and receive the same opportunities as other children in South Korea. 

Facts about South Korea

  • Population: 51,418,097 (July 2018 est.)
  •   Languages: Korean, with English widely taught in junior high and high school
  • Poverty rate:  14.4% (2016 est.)
  • Unemployment rate:  3.7% (2017 est.)
  • Capital: Seoul
  • Currency: South Korean Won

Where we work in South Korea 

In South Korea, Children Incorporated supports the following projects in Seoul and Busan:

Dong San Children’s Home, Grace Children’s Home, Hee Rak Children’s Home, Hyungje Children’s Home, Iri Children’s Home, Jin Woo Children’s Home, Kang Nam Children’s Home, Kwangju Ae Yuk Children’s Home, Sae Dul Children’s Home, Shin Mang Ae Children’s Home, So Jun Children’s Home, Sun Duk Children’s Home, Sung Ae Children’s Home, Yong Jin Children’s Home, Yung Shil Ae Yuk Children’s Home, Zion Children’s Home

Read more about our affiliated projects in Korea

Conserving Energy in South Korea

Visiting Lebanon and South Korea

Extraordinary Homes in Busan

Time to Depart

Surrounded By Beauty in the Land of the Morning Calm

How you can help children in South Korea 

You can help a child living in poverty in South Korea in a few different ways. One way is through our child sponsorship program. Sponsorship provides an underprivileged child with basic and education-related necessities such as food, clothing, healthcare, school supplies, and school tuition payments.

Sponsorship provides an underprivileged child with basic and education-related necessities such as food, clothing, healthcare, school supplies, and school tuition payments.

This vital support allows impoverished, vulnerable children to develop to their full potential — physically, emotionally and socially. Sponsors positively impact the lives of the children they sponsor by assuring them that someone cares about their well-being. This gives children in need hope, which is powerful.

Our policy has always been to consider the needs of each sponsored child on an individual basis. We work closely with our volunteer coordinators at our project sites in South Korea who are familiar with the circumstances and needs of every child in their care. Sponsorship donations are sent to our projects — orphanages, homes, community centers and schools — at the beginning of each month in the form of subsidy stipends. Our on-site volunteer coordinators use those funds to purchase items for children in our program to ensure that they have what they need to do their very best and succeed in school.

SPONSOR A CHILD IN SOUTH KOREA

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Children Incorporated Annual Report

Dear Friends,

We proudly present to you our annual report for the fiscal year which ended on June 30, 2019. We are proud of the fact that we are transparent in how we use the funds so generously entrusted to us by our sponsors and donors. We take financial responsibility seriously, and we willingly open our books to all of the major charitable monitoring groups, including Charity Navigator, which has awarded us a 4 Out of 4 Stars rating for the last three ratings cycles, and Charity Watch, which identifies Children Incorporated as a Grade-A, Top-Rated Charity.

We proudly present to you our annual report for the fiscal year which ended on June 30, 2019. We are proud of the fact that we are transparent in how we use the funds so generously entrusted to us by our sponsors and donors.

Furthermore, we are meticulously audited each year by the highly reputable accounting firm, Yount, Hyde, and Barbour, and they regularly report their findings to our Board of Directors, which then provides expert oversight as I lead Children Incorporated.

For this fiscal year, Children Incorporated ended with a net assets balance of $6,913,196, the highest for our organization since the economic collapse of 2008. Of this total asset value, nearly 35% of the funds are donor-restricted, which means that due to the specific way they were given to our organization, we may not use them as part of our operating budget. Those funds are reserved, per instructions from the donors, for purposes outside of our standard child assistance programs.

Of the unrestricted funds entrusted to Children Incorporated, I am happy to report that the organization has again exceeded all expectations for the amount that is actually used to benefit children, families, and communities. By being frugal, keeping our staff small, and paying close attention to what we spend, Children Incorporated allocated approximately 87% of the funds we received to support child program services. The funds not only supported child sponsorship, but also a host of individualized special needs as they came to our attention.

As Children Incorporated enters its 56th year of service, our vow to you is simple. We will do everything within our power to improve the lives of as many children and young people as possible. We will continue to offer them education, hope, and opportunity. We, as an organization, will remain focused on doing what we know and understand, yet we will be open to new possibilities so that more and more needs may be met.

Thank you for your loyal support.

From the heart,

Ronald H. Carter

President and Chief Executive Officer

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READ OUR FULL ANNUAL REPORT