Jaishikha (left) lives in northern India with her mom, Reena; dad, Sunil (not pictured); and little brother, Kabir.
Apr 6 2016

Homes around the world: Photo essay

In Valparaiso, Chile, there might be a lot of stairs to climb to get home …
In Valparaiso, Chile, there might be a lot of stairs to climb to get home …
… But there's also a spectacular view.

… But there’s also a spectacular view.

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Unbound mother Maria shows off her sewing.
Apr 4 2016

Learning to sew unlocks mom’s determined spirit

Unbound mother Maria shows off her sewing.

Unbound mother Maria shows off her sewing.

Trying something for the first time can be difficult and intimidating. It was true for Maria when she first started learning how to sew.

Maria is a mother of four living in El Salvador. She joined the Unbound sponsorship program 11 years ago when her oldest daughter, Rosa, was sponsored by Alanna and Frances from Pennsylvania.

As a part of the program, Maria joined a mothers group with mothers in the area whose children are also sponsored through Unbound. The mothers had the opportunity to learn a new skill, and they decided to take sewing classes.

At first Maria was afraid, saying, “I used to cry because I thought if I couldn’t sew that I wouldn’t make it. It was hard to learn.”

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'Between Two Furnaces: Episode 2'
Apr 1 2016

‘Between Two Furnaces: Episode 2’

Intrepid “journalist” Leslie Osgood-LeSleigh is at it again in this follow-up to last year’s DoGooder Award-winning video. This time, in “Between Two Furnaces: Episode 2,” Leslie visits with David Herbison, a member of Unbound’s governing board. Have a laugh and learn some facts about how nonprofits work in the developing world.

Unbound sponsor Rebecca from Florida (left) and her sponsored friend Felicitas on an awareness trip in El Salvador.
Mar 30 2016

Unbound is… : Photo essay

… The joy of knowing someone cares enough to send you a letter.

Jose Fernando, a sponsored youth in El Salvador, writes to his sponsors Ron and Kathy in Illinois.

Jose Fernando, a sponsored youth in El Salvador, writes to his sponsors Ron and Kathy in Illinois.


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Clair Paul, outreach coordinator for Unbound
Mar 28 2016

Behind the scenes: Volunteer Outreach Team

Clair Paul, outreach coordinator for Unbound

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.

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Kintana Telo drum.
Mar 25 2016

Unbound families share their talents through song

Voices of Unbound: Madagascar
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.
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This statue is one of the many life-size depictions of Christ displayed in the annual Lenten procession in San Mateo, Philippines.
Mar 23 2016

The message of mercy in Lent

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.”

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Callie, 10, from Grandview, Mo., takes part in the #UnboundSelfieDay.
Mar 21 2016

5 creative ways kids give back with Unbound

Callie, 10, from Grandview, Mo., takes part in the #UnboundSelfieDay.

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.

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Children sponsored through Unbound play leap frog during a Saturday school program organized by the Antioquia office.
Mar 18 2016

The power of personal goals

Children sponsored through Unbound play leap frog during a Saturday school program organized by the Antioquia office.

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.

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Maria Sabina and her son Ronny in their home in El Salvador.
Mar 16 2016

A home for her heart and work for her hands

Maria Sabina and her son Ronny in their home in El Salvador.

Maria Sabina and her son Ronny in their home in El Salvador.


The next time you are at a child’s birthday party and the kids are swinging wildly at a piñata, take a moment to think about Maria Sabina. That brightly colored donkey, fish or bird might just have been made by her own two hands.

The mother of a child in the Unbound sponsorship program, Maria Sabina lives with her husband and two sons in a village in north-central El Salvador. Her son Ronny, 10, has been sponsored by Jackie in Florida since 2012.

Maria Sabina belongs to the Unbound mothers group in her community. As in other locations throughout the Unbound world, her group provides a structure for the mothers of sponsored children to come together and offer each other moral and emotional support.

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The next time you are at a child’s birthday party and the kids are swinging wildly at a piñata, take a moment to think about Maria Sabina. That brightly colored donkey, fish or bird might just have been made by her own two hands. The mother of a child in the Unbound sponsorship program, Maria Sabina lives with her husband […]

Around the world with Unbound