Sponsorship Frequently Asked Questions
Q. How much does it cost to sponsor a child?
A. We ask for a minimum donation of $30 a month for sponsors. The average total costs per child per month for our programs are:
- Pedacito de Cielo Daycare: $250
- Corazón del Pastor Girls’ Home: $210
- Street Program: $30 – $180 (depending on each individual case)
Q. How is my money used?
A. Your sponsorship contribution is combined with that of other sponsors and sent to the administration of Niños con Valor in Bolivia. Here each program has its own budget which is approved annually by the Bolivian board of directors. The administration of NcV in Bolivia is responsible for ensuring that funds are disbursed appropriately to each program and that your sponsored child receives the full benefits of your support. Thus, if your child lives in a home for orphaned and abandoned children, the whole home benefits along with your sponsor child. It is important to note that 100% of your donation goes to the program your child is a part of, and that full sponsorship of all children in a project covers 100% of that project’s costs.
Q. Will this cost rise as the child grows up?
A. Since we work from a “sponsor family” model, and since the entire program benefits from these donations, this is all factored in. Should additional funds be required as a child enters into post-secondary education, for example, we will seek additional sponsors for that child.
Q. Can we choose the child we sponsor?
A. For the most part, no. Sending out information of children to potential donors goes against local regulations and our desire to keep their stories private. Thus, we are unable to send their background until a match has been made. What you can do is indicate the gender and age you are most interested in sponsoring and which of our programs you are interested in sponsoring a child in (Corazón del Pastor Girls’ Home or Street Outreach). We will contact you if a specific match is not available.
Q. Can I write letters to my sponsored child?
A. We understand this is something many programs offer and many sponsors like to do. We welcome correspondence with your child and encourage the children to interact with their sponsors; however, we do not insist on it as part of the program. We will help with translation where needed and will help the child respond if they choose to do so. Our experience has been that the children are especially interested in correspondence with children of similar ages, much like a pen pal.
Q. Can I send gifts to my sponsored child?
A. In the interest of fairness to all the children in the home, we do not permit gifts to be sent directly to a child. However, you will have the opportunity to make special donations to go toward gifts for their birthday as well as for Christmas.
Q. Can I visit my sponsored child?
A. Absolutely! Depending on the program your child is in, different arrangements can be made.
Q. How long are the children part of their programs?
A. Each child we work with has a plan de vida (life plan). This means that when we accept a child into one of our programs we are committing to be with them for life. This looks different in each program.
- Residential Care: Generally, when the children finish high-school the support shifts to help them continue in their studies and learn to live more independently. Eventually, they will no longer need financial assistance and we will remain in their lives as a moral support. In some cases, children do have the possibility of re-establishing relationships with family members, and if this takes place we continue to assist the child in an external form helping the family as well as the child to be able to continue on as independent of assistance as possible.
- Day Care: Unlike residential care, in a day care setting we do not assume the role of a substitute family for the children. Thus, we work more directly with family members to develop a life plan together. If the program is age limited, when the children move on we decide if continues financial assistance for the family is required or not.
- Street Outreach: The complications of working with such high-risk populations are abundant and so there is the possibility that our assistance of a child be terminated prematurely. That said, with these kids we work extra hard on developing life plans as they generally have little perspective for the future. Our goal with these children is to get them to the point where they no longer require financial assistance and can live independently. In the case that a child does leave the program they are a part of, his or her sponsor is contacted to see if they would like to continue to support a different child.
Q. Are my sponsorship payments eligible for a tax receipt?
A. Yes. In the USA, Ninos con Valor is a 501c(3) registered charity. In the UK, Orkney Helping Hands is our partner organization. In Sweden, Medmänniskor is our partner organization. Each of these will issue tax-receipts in accordance with country laws and requirements.
Q. What is my child’s religion?
A. Niños con Valor in Bolivia is a foundation based in Christian principles and runs its programs on Christian values encouraging spiritual development in the children as an important part of their growth. We do not, however, discriminate based on religion nor impose a specific doctrine on the children we serve. Most Bolivians are Catholic or Protestant through baptism, thus your child most likely will be one of the two, and more often than not they also retain traditional beliefs of the indigenous faith here in the altiplano.
Q. Do you work with children with HIV/AIDS?
A. Yes, please follow the link under projects > current project to Pedacito de Cielo where you can read more.