Category Archives: Get involved

Between Two Furnaces
Feb 25 2015

Spread the word about Unbound


by Cara VanNice, communications director for Unbound

March 5, 2015

UPDATE: We did it! We’re officially DoGooders! Our video won in the Funny for Good category – and we could not have done it without you. You helped get Unbound’s name out there and in front of future sponsors. Many, many thanks to everyone who voted and shared this video with others. 

February 25, 2015

Hello, Unbound community!

Unbound is a finalist in this year’s YouTube DoGooder awards, which celebrate the best in nonprofit videos. This is an incredible opportunity and we need your help.

Thousands of nonprofits enter this competition every year, so we were ecstatic to hear that one of our videos is a top four finalist in the Funny for Good category. Our little video is featured alongside entries from groups like the American Heart Association, the Humane Society and Teach for America.

Previous winners have been featured in major online news outlets and gained a lot of awareness for their causes. We would love the opportunity to be featured in front of those wide audiences. The more people Unbound reaches, the more people we can help.

Public voting determines the winner in this amazing opportunity. This is where you come in!

But wait, what video?
In December, we created a spoof of a highly popular web series called “Between Two Ferns” – an Emmy award winning online comedy series hosted by actor Zach Galifianakis. Haven’t seen it? Watch an example episode here. Our version is entitled “Between Two Furnaces” because, in decidedly nonprofit fashion, we filmed it in our warehouse.

Between Two Furnaces

Want to help?

You can help Unbound by voting for “Between Two Furnaces” daily through March 3rd. It’s really easy. Anyone with a Facebook, Twitter or Gmail account can vote. Here’s how:

Help us get the word out. The Unbound community is an amazing thing to be a part of. Thank you for all you do to make it so. With this opportunity, we hope to find lots of new sponsors to join us.

Happy voting!

Social Justice
Feb 20 2015

Take just one step for social justice

By Paul Pearce, Unbound’s director of global strategy

The United Nations’ World Day of Social Justice promotes poverty eradication, full employment and social integration. It is observed each year on Feb. 20.

Social justice requires us to go beyond charity. It requires us to work on structures, attitudes and practices in society that are out of balance, that are biased in some way or lead to some members of society having opportunities for lives with dignity while others do not.

We at Unbound believe one factor that delays action for social justice is a lack of understanding about those it would help. People living in inferior conditions are not inferior people. They have unique talents, aspirations and ideas just like the rest of us.

Keep reading

Valentine's Day
Feb 13 2015

Be our valentine

Happy Valentine’s Day! Here’s one valentine for you and one you can give to a friend. Share this valentine with someone who would be a good sponsor. Pass the love along!

Valentine's Day

Sponsor a child
Jan 23 2015

Woman reconnects with past by sponsoring a child

Unbound awareness trip

From left: Maritza, Karla’s mother, Karla, Mercedes and Marlene Garcia de Ramirez, an Unbound social worker in El Salvador.

The people who sponsor through Unbound are a rather diverse group. Some sponsors are children still in grade school, while others have been retired for years. They represent an array of backgrounds, ethnicities, occupations and beliefs. And while the majority of our sponsors were born and raised in the United States, many were not.

Mercedes Lima has been a sponsor for 21 years. Though she has called Florida home for quite some time, she is originally from a small town in El Salvador.

“I grew up in a very poor place,” Mercedes said, “that’s why I understand the suffering and sadness when you don’t have an opportunity to move forward.”

Keep reading

Martin Luther King, Jr.
Jan 19 2015

Let the work continue

Martin Luther King, Jr.

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. speaking at the Civil Rights March on Washington, D.C., Aug. 28, 1963. National Archives photo no. 306-SSM-4D-107-8.

By Larry Livingston, senior writer/editor

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. is properly associated with the U.S. civil rights movement of the mid-20th century. But like all great people, his witness transcends his times.

The heroism of Dr. King is found, as it is for other noble figures throughout history, in his commitment to speak truth to power. It is a simple virtue to understand but a most difficult one to live out. Those who do usually pay a price for it.

Though Dr. King did in fact pay the ultimate price for his commitment to naming injustice for what it was, the words he spoke live on. Nearly 50 years after his assassination, he continues to inspire those who strive to create a more just world.

Keep reading

Dec 31 2014

Try these New Year’s resolutions in 2015


New Year’s resolutions have been around for thousands of years, in some form or another. There are some modern classics, like losing weight or kicking a bad habit, but we have a few you might want to add to your list in 2015.

Check out the resolutions

Sponsor a child
Dec 19 2014

6 reasons you should write letters

Sponsor a child

Madala in India reads a letter from her sponsor.

Each year Unbound sponsors receive at least two letters and a Christmas card from the person they sponsor. But not as many letters go the other way.

There are lots of reasons for not sending a letter. Not knowing what to say (here are some useful tips), international postage can be a hassle (did you know you can send eLetters?), or maybe life is just plain hectic.

To counter that, here are six reasons from Unbound staff and sponsors on why you should be writing letters.

1. “Each day I communicate in an overwhelming number of ways: social networks, texts, emails, phone calls. However, nothing brightens my day like receiving a little piece of news from one of my sponsored friends in a faraway country. I write because I want them to have the same experience.” — Ellen Edgar, project specialist

Click here to see the rest

Nursing school
Dec 17 2014

‘No Place for Lazy People’

Nursing school

Yollande is completing her training as a nurse at a local health center in Madagascar.

By Barclay Martin, new channels coordinator for Unbound

Sitting in the home of Yollande and her mother, Jeanne, I was given a beautiful glimpse of human potential. In a place where homes are commonly assembled with humble and often salvaged materials, their home is simple, but stately. When I commented on how lovely it felt to be in their home, Jeanne replied, “We have built our life one step at a time, including this house.”

Yollande is 21 and has been raised alongside her siblings in their neighborhood on the outskirts of Antsirabe, Madagascar. Their neighborhood’s name translates to “No Place for Lazy People.”

Welcome to Tsiratrinikamo.

Keep reading

Christmas cards
Dec 10 2014

The journey of a Christmas card

Christmas cards

Christmas cards made by sponsored children in Venezuela.

By Larry Livingston, senior writer/editor

This month, in cities and towns all over the U.S., Unbound sponsors will be receiving Christmas cards from their sponsored friends. A small expression of cheer, gratitude and creativity, these cards have become a cherished Unbound tradition. But what sponsors may not realize is that when their card arrives in their homes it is at the end of a very long journey.

In most of our 21 countries, the process of creating Christmas cards begins in the summer. Following a few practical guidelines set by the Kansas office, the various project staffs form their individual plans. Some will create themes or design templates, while others set wider parameters that allow for more personal creativity.

Keep reading

Sponsor a child
Dec 1 2014

Be a Superhero this Giving Tuesday

Sponsor a child

Rodrigo and his mother, Silvia.

In an urban neighborhood in El Salvador, a little boy with a gapped-tooth smile named Rodrigo dreams of becoming a superhero.

But not so he can fly, become invisible or freeze his enemies.

He loves pretending he’s a superhero because every day he sees people who need one.

In a country where more than a third of the population lives in poverty, including Rodrigo, hungry bellies, leaky roofs and families struggling to send their kids to school and to get ahead are everyday realities.

“My dream is to be a superhero,” Rodrigo said. “To save and help people.”

Read more