More than 13 years after launching the Child Sponsorship program in Uganda, God is still moving. We have grown from about 10 sponsors to over 1,500 around the world and we've expanded to supporting children on two continents. In that time, we have found that Child Sponsorship is the key that enables us to disciple children and their families by meeting their day-to-day needs. Here are the stories of two boys whose lives have been forever changed by Child Sponsorship.
Fred, now a thriving 12-year-old boy, was one of the first children to come live at the Village of Eden in Uganda, Africa. His mother was struggling to provide a good home environment, and she was ill-prepared to care for his needs as a child with sickle cell anemia. Typically—except in urgent cases—we try first to help children in their homes before considering them for care as a resident; however, home care was not successful in this situation. Children living with sickle cell anemia have unique health challenges, and for Fred, it became clear that he needed more consistent care.
Since transitioning to life at the Village of Eden through our Child Sponsorship program, Fred has continued to grow and flourish! Not only has his health improved, but he is doing well in school, and he can answer almost any question you ask about the Bible! As one of the older residents, Fred has begun to show signs of a growing leader as he translates each week for our little kids resident Bible study. It is such a blessing to see God working in this young boy’s life and we look forward with expectation to how God will use Fred in the future.
Leandro is 10 years old and has been attending Vinde Meninos in Brazil for three years. He is a creative young boy and always has an imaginative story to tell. During his early school years, Leandro had some trouble learning and fell behind in his studies. Upon visiting his house, it became clear that his family was living in a difficult situation, lacking many material things, food, and security. Leandro’s grandmother is raising him because his mother left when he was just two years old. Although his grandmother is unable to provide in many ways, she cares for him with much love and dedication.
Since he began attending Vinde Meninos, we have continued to see Leandro grow. Through our tutoring program, he has developed and progressed educationally. A volunteer who is a retired teacher spent time working with him for two years. Now, Leandro is attending school at the appropriate grade level for his age. Not only has Leandro improved in schooling, but he is also improving physically. A nutritious daily meal at Vinde Meninos has allowed Leandro to grow stronger despite his home situation. However, the greatest change we have seen Leandro is in his relationship with Jesus Christ. Shortly after he began attending Vinde Meninos, he trusted Christ as his Savior and has been growing ever since. What a joy to see Leandro seeking the Lord and being discipled through our Child Sponsorship program!