When Khrystyna was growing up, her family lived a humble life. Her father worked part-time as a construction worker while her mother stayed home to care for her and her younger brother, Yuri. The family shared one bedroom in Khrysytna’s grandfather’s house, as they couldn’t afford a home of their own. They didn’t have enough money for even the most basic necessities such as food and clothing.
Sponsorship changed everything for not only Khrystyna, but her entire family. When six-year-old Khrystyna was chosen by a Chalice sponsor, her family received food packages, hygiene products, and other household goods! She and her brother started eating healthier food, wearing warm clothing, and had everything they needed to start school.
Eighteen-year-old Mae Joy has had an exceptionally difficult young life. Growing up, she experienced a deeply troubled home life with a father who was unwilling to support her and her five siblings. In addition to this difficult situation, living in the Tondo slum neighbourhood in the Philippines has been a constant struggle. A few years ago, Mae Joy fell ill with severe pneumonia. Her frail health caused her to succumb to a deep depression.
Thirteen-year-old Alina is an outgoing, happy girl who lives with her parents near our Ternopil site in Ukraine. When she was very little, Alina was diagnosed with double-sided deafness. She’s unable to hear any sounds on her own, and must use sign language to communicate with her friends and family.
With the help of hearing aids, Alina is able to hear some faint sounds, which helps keep her safe and alert in public. Despite her disability, Alina is an accomplished student, and a talented swimmer. She’s earned many awards in her endeavors!
Every year, Alina’s parents take her for a hearing checkup at the local hospital. After her last examination, doctors recommended that she wear a better quality hearing aid that will allow her to hear high definition sounds. Her last hearing aid was purchased over six years ago, making the technology obsolete.
The beautiful gift of sponsorship can change a child’s life in countless ways. This essential support doesn’t just provide food, medicine, clothing, and shelter; it deeply encourages children to open their eyes to a hopeful future, and focus on their innate potential as a child of God.
Nine-year-old Anhelina lives with her older sister, Anastasiya, and her mom, Olha, near our Ternopil site in Ukraine. Anhelina was born with Down syndrome, while her mom has suffered with a joint disability for many years. Since Anhelina’s birth, the family has struggled financially due to her diagnosis, as her developmental issues require expensive treatment and therapies.
Through hard work, faith, determination and the support of his Chalice sponsors, Paul is a now a general practitioner after finishing his training as an intern medical doctor in one of the busiest public hospitals in Kenya. The hospital serves more than 5,000 patients from northern Kenya every month in the wards and clinics, and was a wonderful place for Paul to perfect his skills. He worked hard each day giving back to the community, rejoicing after each treated patient went home smiling. “This wouldn’t have been possible were it not for Chalice,” says Paul.
Paul was born during a time of political transition and tribal clashes in Kenya. His family lost everything they owned during the conflict, and then tragically, his father passed away. His mother worked as a casual laborer on a neighbour’s farm for less than a dollar a day to feed her seven children. Paul and his siblings knew they had to work hard in school to create a brighter future for their family.
Parental support is incredibly important for the stability and happiness of growing children. When kids are encouraged to succeed by parents, grandparents, or other relatives, they feel inspired to achieve their goals. A father from our Ternopil site in Ukraine inspires and encourages his sons each day to pursue their talents in the welding trade.
Volodymyr, a bright and ambitious teenager from Ternopil, lives with his mom, dad, and younger brother. He’s currently in grade 11, and is eagerly looking forward to starting his career as a welder when he graduates. He was inspired to enter the trade by his father, Myron, who himself is a talented and respected welder in the community.
A local bakery at our Samar site in the Philippines is supporting mothers, boosting confidence, and giving nearby schools and families access to delicious goodies!
Our Samar site is located on a small island, where businesses, jobs, and goods are limited. Chalice sponsorship allows struggling children to attend school, and eases the financial burden on parents. Parents of sponsored children are also organized into family circles, where they keep track of budgets and plan for the future. Sometimes, they even launch their own small businesses for extra income.
Luz is the president of her family circle, known as “Zone 3”. Two years ago, they received small business start-up funds through our gift catalogue. Maricel, our Samar site director, had the brilliant idea to start a bakery, as there were no other competing bakeries nearby. The group decided to name their new business the “Bethlehem Bake Shop”!
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.