Jobert grew up in a family of four in rural Samar in the Philippines. His parents struggled to provide for him and his siblings on only his father’s salary as a janitor.
When he was little, Jobert always looked up to his aunt, who was a teacher. He and his siblings would always play ‘school’ and he was always the teacher. But every year, his parents worried that they would not have enough to give their children the supplies they needed to attend school.
It was December, nearing Christmastime the year Jobert was in grade five, when two Sisters knocked on Jobert’s door. They had come with the good news that Jobert had been selected by a Chalice sponsor!
When Cornet was a young boy growing up on the outskirts of our Nairobi site in Kenya, he always dreamed of achieving an education of his own, something many of his family members and peers didn’t have access to. Even though he worked incredibly hard throughout school, he struggled to make ends meet for both his academic and family life, and couldn’t afford to continue his studies after high school.
Last year, when Cornet learned of Chalice’s Business Entrepreneurship Program at our Nairobi site through a friend, he attended conferences to learn more about business management. He started attending regularly, and soon applied to pitch his small business idea to our site to be considered for funding. He came fully prepared with hopes that he would emerge successful; and he did! He received a total of $1031 CAD to start a small cyber café! He purchased two desktop computers, a photocopier, a scanner with a printer, a binding machine, chairs, and a desk.
On a calm March day in 1995, little Shaheda was born to her joyful parents in the town of Wa, Ghana. Soon after she was born, Shaheda’s parents discovered that she had a hearing impairment, a disability she would live with for her entire life. Despite her disability, her parents tried to give her the best life they could. Unfortunately, accommodations for her needs proved expensive on top of the poverty they already faced living in a poor rural community.
With the support of sponsorship, Shaheda was able to attend Wa School for the Deaf, a specialized school where students receive an education tailored to their needs. Here, she was able to focus on her studies and receive the attention she needed to excel in class. She then attended St. John’s Integrated Senior High School, where she graduated with good marks. Her best grades were in Food and Nutrition courses!
When Khrystyna was growing up, her family lived a humble life. Her father worked part-time as a construction worker while her mother stayed home to care for her and her younger brother, Yuri. The family shared one bedroom in Khrysytna’s grandfather’s house, as they couldn’t afford a home of their own. They didn’t have enough money for even the most basic necessities such as food and clothing.
Sponsorship changed everything for not only Khrystyna, but her entire family. When six-year-old Khrystyna was chosen by a Chalice sponsor, her family received food packages, hygiene products, and other household goods! She and her brother started eating healthier food, wearing warm clothing, and had everything they needed to start school.
Eighteen-year-old Mae Joy has had an exceptionally difficult young life. Growing up, she experienced a deeply troubled home life with a father who was unwilling to support her and her five siblings. In addition to this difficult situation, living in the Tondo slum neighbourhood in the Philippines has been a constant struggle. A few years ago, Mae Joy fell ill with severe pneumonia. Her frail health caused her to succumb to a deep depression.
Thirteen-year-old Alina is an outgoing, happy girl who lives with her parents near our Ternopil site in Ukraine. When she was very little, Alina was diagnosed with double-sided deafness. She’s unable to hear any sounds on her own, and must use sign language to communicate with her friends and family.
With the help of hearing aids, Alina is able to hear some faint sounds, which helps keep her safe and alert in public. Despite her disability, Alina is an accomplished student, and a talented swimmer. She’s earned many awards in her endeavors!
Every year, Alina’s parents take her for a hearing checkup at the local hospital. After her last examination, doctors recommended that she wear a better quality hearing aid that will allow her to hear high definition sounds. Her last hearing aid was purchased over six years ago, making the technology obsolete.
The beautiful gift of sponsorship can change a child’s life in countless ways. This essential support doesn’t just provide food, medicine, clothing, and shelter; it deeply encourages children to open their eyes to a hopeful future, and focus on their innate potential as a child of God.
Nine-year-old Anhelina lives with her older sister, Anastasiya, and her mom, Olha, near our Ternopil site in Ukraine. Anhelina was born with Down syndrome, while her mom has suffered with a joint disability for many years. Since Anhelina’s birth, the family has struggled financially due to her diagnosis, as her developmental issues require expensive treatment and therapies.
Through hard work, faith, determination and the support of his Chalice sponsors, Paul is a now a general practitioner after finishing his training as an intern medical doctor in one of the busiest public hospitals in Kenya. The hospital serves more than 5,000 patients from northern Kenya every month in the wards and clinics, and was a wonderful place for Paul to perfect his skills. He worked hard each day giving back to the community, rejoicing after each treated patient went home smiling. “This wouldn’t have been possible were it not for Chalice,” says Paul.
Paul was born during a time of political transition and tribal clashes in Kenya. His family lost everything they owned during the conflict, and then tragically, his father passed away. His mother worked as a casual laborer on a neighbour’s farm for less than a dollar a day to feed her seven children. Paul and his siblings knew they had to work hard in school to create a brighter future for their family.
Parental support is incredibly important for the stability and happiness of growing children. When kids are encouraged to succeed by parents, grandparents, or other relatives, they feel inspired to achieve their goals. A father from our Ternopil site in Ukraine inspires and encourages his sons each day to pursue their talents in the welding trade.
Volodymyr, a bright and ambitious teenager from Ternopil, lives with his mom, dad, and younger brother. He’s currently in grade 11, and is eagerly looking forward to starting his career as a welder when he graduates. He was inspired to enter the trade by his father, Myron, who himself is a talented and respected welder in the community.
A local bakery at our Samar site in the Philippines is supporting mothers, boosting confidence, and giving nearby schools and families access to delicious goodies!
Our Samar site is located on a small island, where businesses, jobs, and goods are limited. Chalice sponsorship allows struggling children to attend school, and eases the financial burden on parents. Parents of sponsored children are also organized into family circles, where they keep track of budgets and plan for the future. Sometimes, they even launch their own small businesses for extra income.
Luz is the president of her family circle, known as “Zone 3”. Two years ago, they received small business start-up funds through our gift catalogue. Maricel, our Samar site director, had the brilliant idea to start a bakery, as there were no other competing bakeries nearby. The group decided to name their new business the “Bethlehem Bake Shop”!