Clair Paul, outreach coordinator for Unbound
By Clair Paul, outreach coordinator for Unbound
Clair has been with Unbound for more than three years. She enjoys developing relationships with supporters and helping them become ambassadors for Unbound.
Sponsors are one of the best resources that Unbound has. What better way is there to get the word out about our program than to engage the 250,000-plus people who already support our work? I’m proud to be a part of the team that empowers our sponsors to grow our Unbound family.
The Volunteer Outreach Team was created in 2008 and works out of our international headquarters in Kansas City. Our purpose is to better connect with our sponsors and invite them to be more involved with our program.
In 2014 several groups of musicians from our Antsirabe program in Madagascar were invited to record their music for the first Voices of Unbound CD. The Voices of Unbound: Madagascar CD was created to celebrate the talent and culture of our Unbound community while increasing awareness of the Unbound program. Below, Rovah, a staff member from our Antsirabe office, and Lydia, a mothers group member and musician, share their stories of participating in the music project. You can listen to the recordings online at unbound.org/music.
This statue is one of the many life-size depictions of Christ displayed in the annual Lenten procession in San Mateo, Philippines.
Tristan John Cabrera, communications liaison for Unbound in the Philippines.
By Tristian John Cabrera, communications liaison for Unbound in the Philippines
Tristan John Cabrera is based out of our Quezon office. The Philippines is a predominately Catholic nation, and staff members from our Quezon office celebrate Lent together. Tristan offers his reflections on what Lent means in the Holy Year of Mercy.
For this Holy Year of Mercy, Pope Francis has said, “Mercy is the heart of God. It must also be the heart of the members of the one great family of his children: a heart which beats all the more strongly wherever human dignity — as a reflection of the face of God in his creatures — is in play. Jesus tells us that love for others … is the yardstick by which God will judge our actions.”
Callie, 10, from Grandview, Mo., takes part in the #UnboundSelfieDay.
Parents who give time or money to charity set an important example for their kids. They teach their kids about gratitude and compassion while developing the next generation of leaders and social entrepreneurs.
Unbound offers a personal way to help people living in poverty through one-to-one sponsorship. It’s a great way for a family to give back together.
It can also be good for your child’s happiness.
“Research shows that giving to others benefits not only the recipient, but also the giver,” said Michael Norton, of Harvard University’s business school and coauthor of ‘Happy Money: The Science of Happier Spending.’ “In countries all over the world, and in children as young as 3 years old, we’ve found that giving makes givers happier.”
Kids want to make the world a better place. Here are five creative ideas from kids who’ve helped families living in poverty.
Children sponsored through Unbound play leap frog during a Saturday school program organized by the Antioquia office.
Over the last decade Unbound has been shifting more and more of the decision-making power into the hands of the families we serve. We believe that families know best what they need and when, so creating a program that is personalized to each family just made sense.
As part of that shift, our local staff have focused on providing guidance to the families on making budgets and goals for how they want to utilize their sponsorship benefits.
Personal program goals put into action a belief in the decision-making power of individual sponsored members. For this reason, goal setting and goal orientation are an important part of living out many other Unbound program characteristics. A personal goal is simply a specific dream about how someone’s life or situation will be in the future. A goal could be related to someone’s future career, education, health status or economic situation.
Staff members from our office in Antioquia, Colombia, came together to share the process they went through when transitioning to the method of using personal program goals.
Mary, 17, from Tanzania
For a long time, Mary’s interest in art was simply a hobby. As a young girl, watching others draw henna designs on skin fascinated her. Now she uses this hobby as a way to earn money for school.
Seventeen-year-old Mary is an Unbound sponsored youth living in Tanzania. Because her parents separated when she was young, Mary and her siblings went to live with their aunt after their mother passed away last year.
“I used to depend on my mother for everything,” Mary said. “When she passed on, things changed. My aunt does her best to take care of me, but she also has her children, making it difficult for her to provide for all of us.”
Myra (right) meets with sponsored child Sindy (center) and Sindy’s mom, Rosalina, and baby sister, Vivian, outside their home in Guatemala.
Myra is an exuberant, kind woman driven by a deep desire to make the world a better place. Born in Guatemala and raised in a strict but lovingly tight-knit family, her rigorous education has shaped her into a disciplined and focused individual. These traits make her a valuable member of the Unbound family.
“My greatest satisfaction is being with the people,” Myra said. “I have a personal desire to see others reach their potential. I believe that every day and every person that touches your life is a learning opportunity.”
Ariel, 21, a former sponsored member and current staff member in the Philippines.
A healthy dose of community, perseverance and hope go a long way in combatting the daily struggles of those facing poverty. Unbound’s sponsorship program prescribed that remedy for Ariel from the Philippines.
Billy and Mary Lou from Arizona sponsored Ariel when he was just 7 years old, which unlocked a world of opportunity he never knew.
“I had faced a lot of hindrances in my life, many problems, trials and conflicts,” Ariel said. “Problems in family and school made me strong and responsible enough to stand up on my own.”
Bryan, 12, from Guatemala.
Beaming with pride and a smile that constantly says, “I can do it,” 12-year-old Bryan enjoys a grand accomplishment for a boy his age.
For the third year in a row, Bryan has earned the distinction of being valedictorian at his grade school in Guatemala, a feat that is even more impressive when you consider only one student gets to have that honor each year.
Excelling at school might be difficult for a lot of students, but not many have faced the sort of obstacles that Bryan has had to overcome.
From left: Sponsored elder Florfina and moms Eliza and Lorna learned about hablon weaving.
Woven into every sponsorship story are personalized solutions to overcome poverty and get ahead.
That story is no different for Eliza from the Philippines. Her 20-year-old son, Christian, has been sponsored through Unbound since 2004. But with seven other children at home, getting ahead in life remains a challenge. Their family’s only income comes from her husband’s farming.
Eliza is able to send Christian to school with the support his sponsors, Janet and Tim from Kansas. She also uses the sponsorship support to supplement her family’s nutritional and other daily needs.