Child Sponsorship

Okay. I guess I don’t get it.

A local morning radio show is asking its listeners to sponsor a child. They want you to donate about a dollar a day to change the life of a child. These children are thousands of miles away. Granted, our dollar can go a lot further for these children than if we donated that same dollar here, but why are we sending our money across the seas when our children right here are suffering and doing without. Sure, most of the local children aren’t in the conditions of those in other countries, but why can’t we help our own children before we help others?

A mattress company wants us to . That sounds great. These children are going through really hard times – bouncing around from family to family, doing without basic needs, blah, blah. Isn’t it the job of our government to supply those necessities to those children? Wait – what is that? They do? They pay their caretakers to obtain the children’s needs? What I’m hearing you say is that these heroes who take on these children need to get paid more. Instead of relying on the kindness of strangers, our government should pay foster parents more or help them budget better (or supply the kids with what they need and cut out the middle man).

When I worked for a local company, they donated hand-made hats to people undergoing chemotherapy. I helped make hats, and I felt really good about it. And then I thought about it. Can these people not afford to buy hats? Or, can their loved ones not make/buy them for them? All of a sudden, it felt silly to be making these hats for this particular set of people.

I give my money to Children’s Hospital. Each month, I donate a small amount to the local children’s hospital who I believe is doing a ton of good for our local children. That, I very happily do. They work hard to make a child’s illness as bearable as possible. They do research so fewer children have to suffer or the suffering is decreased. They pay for the children’s care who don’t have insurance, don’t have enough insurance, or just can’t afford any part of their treatment. I love what that hospital does!

But, what can I do?

I can make hats and/or blankets for the homeless. For some reason, this is just sitting really well with me. The other day, I overheard some close-minded jerk say that “all homeless people are just a bunch of drunks.” It made me so angry to hear that! The man who said that couldn’t have been more wrong! It could be someone who lost his job, wasn’t able to find another one, and didn’t have anyone to take him in. It could be someone with a mental deficiency. It could be someone who had a medical crisis and lost everything due to a loss of work and loss of home. It could be a soldier who bravely fought for my freedom and now suffers from a case of PTSD which is so bad he can’t function in the normal world. It could be a girl who ran away from a father who raped her every night. It could be… the “could be”s are endless. Through no fault of their own, many people find themselves homeless.

These are the people I want to help. They are cold, they are hungry, but worst of all, they aren’t treated with respect or kindness. Nobody thinks about giving them a Christmas gift. If I can give them a warm hat or blanket, how much could I improve their life? If I give them a wrapped gift, how special would it make them feel? Granted, it’s a Band-Aid on a larger problem, but I can only do so much (at least until I write a best seller, at which time I plan to do more).

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