"If you can't feed a hundred people, then feed just one." - Mother Teresa
The Institute for Global Outreach sponsors single and double orphaned children, many of whom have lost parents to the AIDS disease. For these children, a healthy meal, combined with medical support and a loving environment is a life saving difference.
Instead of an orphanage, children that have lost both parents are taken care of by a guardian who most often is a family member and someone that the child feels safe and comfortable with. A social worker is then assigned to the child to ensure that they are receiving proper care and to assist with any concerns that may arise.
To see the remarkable difference in these now sponsored children after one or two years is an incredible experience. Although still living in the same environment and dealing with the same circumstances, these children are now very Different. The hopeless, lifeless and withdrawn look in their eyes have become bright, vibrant and full of hope and excitement!
What happens when a child loses their sponsor?
The most tragic news for a child who is in dire need of help is to learn that their support has ended. These children had this devastating experience first hand.
This little girl’s tragedy is an example of the devastating effect of losing support. She is an orphan who was in good health and thriving while receiving funds through a nonprofit organization. When the organization no longer had funding, 50 HIV positive orphans lost their lifeline. During the period when she received no support, Bethy's health declined drastically & life became terribly harsh for her. She became very frail, lost all of her hair & was deteriorating physically and emotionally
Abreham, an 11 year old boy whose mother died of AIDS and whose father is ill with the disease, is also HIV positive. In spite of his sad circumstances and due to support from a nonprofit benefactor, he was doing well living with the virus. When the benefactor could no longer provide funding, life for Abreham became terrible harsh, leaving him extremely malnourished alone and distraught. Now that he's enrolled in IGO's Sponsorship and Nurturing Program, Abreham has shown amazing signs of improvement and has regained his self-esteem.
Over 250 children are enrolled in IGO's Sponsorship & Nurturing program. Most of these children are HIV positive orphans who've lost their parents to AIDS.
Velma Kirksey-Tarver ensures that each child is introduced to their sponsors via photo, during her annual trips to East Africa.
Some of her most memorable moments occur during the "Meet Your Sponsor" party. The excitement on the children's faces once they see the individual in America who's caring for them brings unspeakable joy!
Starting with only 30 sponsored children a few years ago, the Institute for Global Outreach (IGO) now supports over 800. Supporting our lifesaving work helps bring health and hope to vulnerable children and families in the neediest communities around the world.