Sponsored Children Stories

The Reading Rocks literacy program at her school changed Hope’s life for the better.

Meet Hope

Hope loves to read. In fact, Hope loves to read so much that we won’t be surprised if all the stories she’s read inspire her to write her own someday. But Hope didn’t start out as a bookworm. In fact, every time the 8-year-old from Kentucky was asked to read aloud in class, she would cry. Like many at-risk children, an unstable and stressful home life left Hope without the support she needed to thrive in school.

But then, three years ago, Hope joined Reading Rocks, the sponsored literacy program at her school. She participated in after-school activities designed to increase her reading achievement, including guided independent reading, fluency-building and listening to books read aloud. Her passion for learning, along with her confidence, began to grow. Now, her teachers see tremendous progress. “Hope has been involved in many challenging situations in her young life,” her teachers say. “She’s come a long way.” 

Once reluctant to read on her own, Hope has read more than 40 books this year. She now has a love for reading and for the teachers who helped her become a reading rock star.

6-year-old Lillian stands in front of the school bus. She is enrolled in both in-school literacy and afterschool programs in Kentucky, thanks to sponsorship. Photo credit: Victoria Zegler/Save the Children, March 2017.

“The sponsorship program is exactly what Lillian needed – in her education and in her life,” says her first-grade teacher.

Meet Lillian

Today, first-grader Lillian is on the path to lifelong learning. Thanks to sponsorship, she’s on track for success in the classroom and in life. But that isn’t how her journey started out.

In the community where Lillian lives, most families don’t have enough to eat and children often don’t have another meal until they return to school. We know that girls and boys living in poverty often struggle to learn because they don’t have the support they need to do their best. But we also know that, together, we can change the future for children like Lillian by providing the tools they need to thrive.

Before Lillian began participating in the sponsored programs at her school, she was too shy to make friends. She lacked self-esteem and was reluctant to participate in class or read aloud. At home, Lillian lives with her grandparents who struggle to make ends meet and can’t afford to buy supplies to help improve her at-home learning. Now, Lillian’s grandparents are hopeful for her future and thankful that sponsorship provides her with a healthy start, books to read and the opportunity to do what she loves - learn.

Ahmed working in his family’s farm in Egypt.

Your support empowers children like Ahmed to change the course of their future and achieve their dreams.

Meet Ahmed

In the rural farming region of Egypt where 16-year-old Ahmed lives, it’s common for children to be forced to leave school so they can help support their families. That’s why, when he began working as a laborer with his father, Ahmed was convinced that the door to any future opportunities in his life had slammed shut. “I still remember how helpless I felt,” says Ahmed. “All I knew was that I would end up with a chisel and a hammer just like my father.”

When a Save the Children team member learned of his situation, he visited Ahmed’s home and talked to Ahmed’s father about a sponsored program that would allow Ahmed to earn money over the summer while remaining in school. After much discussion, his father agreed and not only did Ahmed begin participating in the program, he motivated his brother and cousin to join as well.

Through the program, the boys learned how to start, manage and finance their own start-up business. They qualified for a microloan to rent a small plot of land and began cultivating a farm with mulukhiyah, a vegetable plant common in Middle Eastern countries. By combining the farming skills they learned from their grandfather with the knowledge and skills they gained through sponsorship, the boys launched their very first business venture.

Today, when the young entrepreneurs aren’t busy with schoolwork, they’re strategizing about how to expand next summer’s crop to boost profitability.

Beauven shares knowledge about oral hygiene at her school in the Philippines.

With help from kids like Beauven, we’re doing all we can in the Philippines to prevent the illnesses that keep children from attending school.

Meet Beauven

At 12, Beauven doesn’t have her M.D. yet, but she’s already on her way to making the world a safer place for kids. In the densely populated Philippine city where she lives, schools are overcrowded and classrooms can have up to 80 students. Outside, the poor condition of the neighborhoods and the city’s teeming population of 1.4 million residents make it easy for diseases to spread. And once they do, they’re difficult to control.

Beauven wanted to do her part to help keep her classmates healthy, so she trained to become a Child Health Promoter through her school’s sponsored health and nutrition program. Together with sponsors like you, we launched the Child Health Promoter initiative in schools throughout Caloocan to help prevent disease and raise awareness about lifesaving health and hygiene practices.

Through her training, Beauven learned how to mentor younger children about important health information and the skills they need to stay safe. “I became more confident and less shy. I learned how to communicate well with other people, and how to take care of children who are younger than me,” she says. “We teach kids proper handwashing, tooth brushing and nutrition habits.”

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