Recently, we had the privilege of welcoming a new staff member to our Sponsorship team.  Kristi Daugherty is joining us as the Child Sponsorship Developer.  She gets the fun job of connecting churches, organizations, businesses and advocates with being a part of and championing our child sponsorship program!  We are so incredibly excited to have her join the team, bringing her years of experience working in global missions (& military training!) to the table.

Recently, she wrote a post about her new position…

I have just recently, last week actually, started working full time with a non-profit, The 410 bridge. I LOVE what this organization is about.  The 410 bridge is trying to help communities in Africa (Kenya, Uganda) and Haiti, by helping them to help themselves.  I love this illustration: if I hand you one end of a rope and I’m holding the other end of the rope, and I push the rope towards you, you are not going to go anywhere.  But, if you PULL your end of the rope, I will be moving WITH you.  That’s kind of how we see it.  We want the communities in these villages of Africa and Haiti to participate in their own betterment.  To have ownership.  Sweat equity.  We want to empower them.  Not a handout.

As the child sponsorship developer, my job is to connect as many people as possible to the kids in these communities.  I am CRAZY EXCITED to be able to help these kids in this way.  The children in these communities need clean water and should be able to go to school.  I’m not trying to buy them all iPods.  We’re talking BASIC needs.

I’ve been fortunate to have been able to travel to some of these villages I’m speaking of.  The needs are insane.  You’ve seen this stuff.  In person, on TV and in magazines.  It’s no joke.  One place in Africa that I will never forget, in a village called Kosti, the children were walking around with parts of their toes missing.  Why?   These tiny little bugs bite and attach themselves, causing infection and who knows what.  And because of a lack of clean water, and medical care, there’s not a whole lot that can be done. It was heartbreaking.   I wanted to bring every kid home with me.  The hardest part was seeing the eyes of the parents.  Seeing moms who love their kids just as much as you and I do, and knowing THEY KNOW there’s nothing they can do.

Now, I am now in a position where I get to help, full-time.

My job is to connect people, like you, who would like to sponsor a child in these communities.  By doing so, you are providing many things…the ability for the child to stay with their family, go to school, have food, clean water, etc.  You can write to the child, receive letters back, and maybe, if you’d like, actually travel to that community and meet the child you sponsor.  See them in their home, see how their community has changed because of your contribution.  We encourage the relationship.

And this is not just for individuals.  Do you work, go to school or go to church?  Wouldn’t it be cool if you were part of a company, school or church that partnered with a village by sponsoring a whole class of students?  A whole village of children?  We do that!

If you would also like to help these kids, please consider sponsoring a child.  You can do that by going to the website and looking through the needs available.   If you are part of a company, school or church and think you would like to partner in a larger way, or would be interested in learning more, please contact me via email or by phone at 770-664-4949, ext. 343.  I’d love to hear from you!

~ Kristi