These are the most frequently asked questions about sponsorship.
How does sponsorship help children?
The child you sponsor through African Vision of Hope receives opportunities and services that many children in their countries do not have access to such as:
- Clean Water
- Nutritious Food
- Health Care
- The opportunity to hear the Gospel
- Leadership and Skills Training
Your relationship with your sponsored child makes you a very important person who has a significant role in his or her development.
What do I receive when I sponsor a child?
- You will receive a photo of the child you sponsor and information about their life
- You will receive a welcome kit for you to fill out about yourself so it can be given to your sponsored child
- You will receive a yearly updated picture and letter
When you say my sponsorship will provide an education, what exactly do you mean?
In Zambia, the government schools charge for students to attend and receive an education. Due to the extreme poverty brought on by the HIV/AIDS epidemic, most families cannot afford the government schools, and in many instances children have been orphaned with no one to provide for them, let alone pay for their education. African Vision of Hope (AVOH) provides an education at no cost to the children in the area we serve. Your sponsorship helps cover the cost for items such as the construction of school buildings, teacher’s curriculum, books, desks, chalkboards, school uniforms, and the teacher salaries.
Can I send letters and gifts to my sponsored child and how many letters will I receive?
You will receive a letter from your child once or twice a year. A teacher or staff person will assist children who have yet to learn how to read and write. Letter writing is developmental for children and improves each year that they are in school. We encourage you to write to your child often and include a picture of yourself or your family. Sponsored children keep these letters and pictures as treasured possessions. Your words of encouragement will make a huge difference in their life. You may send anything that will fit in a flat envelope such as stickers, bookmarks and pictures. We do not mail gifts to sponsored children. Send letters to our office at: African Vision of Hope 8 Professional Park Dr. Maryville, IL 62062
Why are you providing meals?
On average, those living in these impoverished conditions in Zambia only eat few meals a week. The lack of nutrition makes it impossible for the children to fight off even the simplest of infections. A cut on the foot could mean death without the proper nutrition to help keep their immune system healthy. At the African Vision of Hope Schools, children and widows in the community are served over 20,000 meals every month! Often times, these are the only meals they will eat for that day. The African Vision of Hope meal program helps fight malnutrition and enables the children and widows to stay healthy. African Vision of Hope has received farmland within close proximity to the schools to teach agricultural skills as well as provide nutritious vegetables to the children as part of the food program.
What kind of food do you provide for my sponsored child?
Our students are served a fortified rice meal that is brought into Zambia from the United States through our partnership with Feed The Hungry. This fortified rice meal provides our students crucial nutrients, vitamins, a healthy plant-based protein, as well as filling their hungry bellies.
Additionally, children living in our rescue centers, as well as the schools on special holidays, will serve traditional Zambian “staple” meals. These meals are comprised of Nshima or Nsima (pronounced Sheema). It is a cornmeal product cooked into porridge, stirred by paddles to the perfect consistency. It is typically served with a protein such as chicken, soya products, or beans. Another side dish typically served is a “relish” of cabbage cooked with onions and tomatoes.
What type of health care is provided?
African Vision of Hope has a nurse on staff. The nurse keeps records for all of the students, including weight and physical progress, and administers medications as needed. If a child requires more urgent care, African Vision of Hope has contracted a clinic in nearby Lusaka to tend to the children. If the situation is beyond the abilities of clinic, African Vision of Hope enlists the services available at one of the hospitals in Lusaka. The children are also taught basic hygiene, especially hand washing, bathing, the importance of water to our bodies, and HIV/AIDS education.
Why does my sponsorship help bring HOPE to these children?
With many families torn apart by the HIV/AIDS epidemic, the children in Zambia have been orphaned by one or both parents. When the family loses one parent, often times the surviving parent can no longer afford to send their children to school. Therefore, the child is often forced to drop out of school to help find some way to help provide food for the rest of the family. Without an education, the children will never be able to break this cycle of poverty. Nevertheless, through African Vision of Hope, you bring HOPE to the hopeless by sharing God’s love and the HOPE brought through His Son Jesus Christ. You bring HOPE of breaking the cycle of poverty by continuing the children’s education through high school. You bring HOPE to your sponsored child through your sponsorship alone, as it speaks volumes of encouragement, and is a demonstration of God’s love even though you are thousands of miles away. Your sponsored child covets your prayers, letters, and photos and their faces light up when they know there is someone out there to help them stay strong in God’s HOPE.
Can I send packages to my sponsored child?
We understand your desire to send packages to your sponsored child, however, we have a policy not to allow separate packages for the following reasons:
- Complexity of international postal regulations
- Slow delivery
- Possibility of loss, theft, or damage
- Possibility of tension among the children if one child receives more gifts than another child
You may send anything that will fit in a flat envelope such as stickers, bookmarks and pictures.
How long will I sponsor a child?
The length of sponsorship will be different for each child dependent on a number of factors: child’s age, family circumstances, health of a child, progress of a child, and so on. Please understand that a sponsored child’s circumstances may change too. For example, sometimes families move beyond the reach of our program. We will inform you as quickly as possible if any such circumstances affect the child you sponsor, and will offer you the opportunity to support another child in need of your help.
Upon a child’s graduation you can choose to sponsor another child or you can choose to continue to help support them with the college fund.
Can I meet my sponsored child?
We have yearly mission trips to Zambia, Africa. We encourage you to join us in serving at the African Vision of Hope programs and meeting your sponsored child.
How often will I receive an update about my sponsored child?
You will be sent an update about your sponsored child each year. You will also receive an updated photograph.
Still have questions that you would like answered? Just drop us a note and we will get back with you.
African Vision of Hope
8 Professional Park Drive
Maryville, IL 62062
M-F 8:00-4:30 central