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the work of help a child

Help A Child has been working for more than 40 years to offer hope for the future to impoverished children and their families in Asia and Africa. In 2009 our outreach Help A Child in Kenya extended to 190,000 children living in 14 different countries. On the right-hand side of this page you can read about the five main aspects of the work of Help A Child. If you would like to support our efforts through any of these programs please contact us by filling out our feedback form.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • Sponsorship
  • HIV/AIDS
  • Education
  • Job Training
  • Emergency Relief

Indian girl smilingChild sponsorship is the cornerstone upon which the work of Help A Child was built over 40 years ago. Today it continues to be one of the fundamental building-blocks of our work. However in recent years we have both re-evaluated and broadened the sponsorship model in order to better serve children and their families, within their own communities whenever possible. Whereas in the past children were often placed in a children's home or orphanage, the emphasis now is to allow them to remain in their natural environment in the care of their own (extended) family and community whenever possible. For some children a children's home is still the African familybest option, however we now consider it to be a measure of last resort rather than the norm.

At the same time we have broadened the concept of sponsorship to include job training, families and entire villages. Child and family sponsorships enable you to have a personal connection with those you are helping. Some of our sponsors have supported one child for over 15 years. By receiving updated photographs, letters and reports on a regular basis you maintain a connection to your sponsored child or family. Through sending letters and praying for your sponsored child or family you can become a meaningful presence in their lives. We hope you will join our team by becoming a Help A Child sponsor. To read more about these various sponsorship opportunities please visit our sponsorship page. Click on either of the photos above to view the Help A Child Sponsorship film.

 

 

mother with Aids & daughterMillions of children in the Third World are victims of AIDS. Their fathers and mothers die as a result of the disease. Many of these children are infected as well. Help A Child provides care for these children and helps in the fight against this terrible disease. Our goal is to provide these children and their families with hope for the future.

A number of Help A Child partners have important programs in place aimed at AIDS patients and their families. Through these programs they strive to alleviate suffering by means of home visitation, instruction, medicine and nutritional supplements. They discuss various options for the Aids counselingchildren's future with the parents. One of our partners is Care located in South India. Here, a large contingent of staff members and volunteers are making a difference in the fight against AIDS. Their efforts are aimed at helping families. They visit the patients in their homes to determine what help is needed on a case by case basis. An individualized plan of care is established. They also pray with the patients. These families are very grateful for the help that Care provides. Help a Child wants to expand our outreach to families affected by AIDS. More money is needed to bring this about. Will you help us in this effort? To donate to this project please fill out our feedback form and designate your gift for the HIV/AIDS project.

Click either of the photos above to view the Help A Child HIV/AIDS film.

 

 

 

 

Indian classHelp A Child is committed to giving children the opportunity to go to school. All children receiving support through Help A Child are offered an education. Help A Child also builds schools in Ethiopia and northeast India.

In the northern Indian state of Assam, there are very few schools. Recently this region experienced much turmoil as a result of tribal conflict. It is an underdeveloped region with a critical shortage of schools for children. The Indian government promises to provide education for all children and claims that there are already a sufficient number of schools in Ethiopian schoolgirlsAssam. Unfortunately this is simply not the case. For too many children the closest school is miles and miles away. In recent years many schools have been built through the support of Help A Child. Hundreds of children can attend school for the first time.

In many parts of Ethiopia children are unable to go to school. In 2006 we began a major education initiative in Ethiopia. Together with our local partner organization, the Kale Heywet Church, construction is underway on what will eventually be 35 new schools. These schools are being built in the Rift Valley, a very impoverished part of Ethiopia. In the coming years, about 15,000 children will be able to attend school for the first time as a result of this undertaking. Click on either of the photos above to watch the Help A Child education film (on youtube), or go to our About Us page and click on "our film". To donate to this effort please fill out our feedback form and designate your gift to the school building project.

 

 

 

 

Paid employment or the chance to own and run one's own business, is of vital importance for the economic stability and future hopes of children and their families in developing countries. leather craftingBecause of this Help A Child and our partner organizations in Kenya, Ethiopia and India have implemented one-year job training courses aimed at providing marketable skills to young adults who need a helping hand. The goal is to find a job or self-employment for each participant in the program. The young men and women admitted to this program come from very poor families and at-risk populations. For each individual a training course is selected that is best suited to his or her particular situation. Participants are taught skills that are in demand in their communities, can be learned in a course lasting one year and that will lead to the ability to earn a decent living. In a society with very high unemployment it is crucial to strengthen the local economy. It is better to increase the size of the pie rather than divide that same pie into smaller and smaller pieces. In Kenya job training is being offered in four different localities: Maai Mahiu, sewing classKima, Eldoret and the capital city of Nairobi. The young adults enrolled in this program often come from the slums or impoverished rural villages. Some of the courses offered are carpentry, hair styling, leather work, clothing production, metal work, automotive repair and secretarial skills. In Kenya alone our goal is to supply 1,200 young graduates with good jobs each year. We have three partner organizations in India that are providing job training. RPC works in the state of Assam in the extreme northeast of India. The other partners, Bethel and VTRC operate in the south of India. In 2006 VTRC started a teacher training course. We plan to dramatically increase the job training outreach in India in the coming years. To donate to this effort please fill out our feedback form and designate your gift to the job-training project or become a job training sponsor. Click either of the photos above to watch our job training film (on youtube).

Children are often the ones who suffer the most in the wake of natural disasters. Therefore Help A Child is always prepared to lend emergency relief in the countries in which our partner organizations are active. In recent years tens of thousands of children and their families have been provided with aid as a result of drought, earthquake, tsunami and civil war.


Please click here to learn about the current drought in East Africa (2011)

Kenyan boy drinking waterDrought in East Africa (June 2009)- Over the last year East Africa has been suffering from severe drought. In some places the rainy season came and went without a drop of rain. The cattle are dying and the harvests are failing. The people are in danger of dying from hunger and thirst. Help A Child teamed up with three other Dutch relief organizations to provide aid to those in need. With the help of many generous donors a water well in the Samburu district of Kenya was repaired and is now supplying water for a substantial part of the local population.

 

Aid to CongoEmergency Aid to Congo (November 2008)- In the Congo hundreds of thousands have become refugees fleeing from the rebel leader Laurent Nkunda. Images from this part of the world have become familiar: the fearful, sad eyes, people carrying what few possessions they have on their heads, hopelessly searching for a safe place. Help A Child and four other Dutch relief organizations bonded together to raise awareness and provide relief for those suffering as a result of this turmoil in East Congo. Diverse programs are in place to help the victims by providing clean drinking water, health care, repatriation and reconstruction. Both of these emergency aid efforts are still underway. To donate to these efforts please fill out out feedback form and designate your gift to either the Congo or East African emergency relief fund.