Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Sending Love Across the World: Hope for the Hungry's Efforts in Haiti

14 Days of Loving-Kindness: Day 12 Someone Across the World

In addition to the final week of our kindness challenge, this week is also the final week of the 2014 100 Acts of Kindness Project hosted by Toddler Approved and Coffee Cups and Crayons, with a focus on kindness towards the world. So, today we're focusing on sending loving-kindness to someone across the world. 

When I engage my family in serving those across the world, I prefer to have a personal tie to the act -- a reason that giving opportunity makes the most sense for our family. For our act of loving-kindness across the world today, I've selected Hope for the Hungry's initiatives in Haiti. This organization resonates with me for our family for two reasons: it is based in the area of Texas where I grew up and has been brought to my attention by an inspiring woman who was one of my first friends when I moved to Texas and this initiative serves children in Haiti. 

Haiti, and its tap-taps (buses), gained Wild Thing's attention through some bus, boat and map play. Haiti also shares an island with the Dominican Republic, where my husband's mother was from, and he and I have discussed the unfortunate harm that various Dominican leaders have brought to Haiti. 

Though today's kindness act will specifically involve me clicking a button to make a donation, I have two key ways to engage the boys. I plan for us to make a $25 donation, which matches the Trails of Hope race registration amount, a Central Texas (Belton, TX) 5K race on Feb. 22nd to raise funds for Hope for the Hungry. We will mark out and plan our own "race" for that day that he and I will run in our little town. 

Another key way to involve Wild Thing (and Caterpillar a little) is by talking with him about why we will give. Recently I spoke with Sheila of Pennies of Time about the ways she teaches her children about the lives of other children who may be enslaved or lack proper housing or schooling. She stressed the value of encouraging her children to consider the ways that the other child's life differs from their lives. I plan to do this with Wild Thing today -- to talk about children not having a chance to go to school and not having enough food to eat and about the ways that we can help. One way is by spreading the word, so I'm doing that too!

3 Hope for the Hungry projects and urgent needs:
  • The Educate Haiti Initiative provides teacher’s salaries, administrative costs, and a free lunch program for the schools in Haiti. (All employees are Haitian. The free lunch is the only hot, nutritious meal that most students eat).
  • $12 per month will provide one child's portion of the costs mentioned above (I love that our $25 donation will support two children as it mirrors our family's 2 children). 
  • Children's Home Sponsorship's provides a home, food, clothing, loving staff, and school tuition for the children in our Children’s Homes (2 homes - girls home in Ferrier, boys home in Guibert)
  • $100 per month provides the above mentioned for one child. 
  • Housing in Haiti remains a major issue. Many people are still living in tents or temporary shelters because of the earthquake in 2010. 
  • $4700 completes an entire 300 square foot, 3-room home for a family in Haiti. This includes all materials and labor (employing local Haitian workers and requiring help/labor investment from the family if able).

3 Easy Ways to Help:

1. Financially support one of the Urgent Needs above. A one-time gift or a monthly commitment can make all the difference in the life of one child or one family.

2. Go to Haiti - Join one of the teams and participate in hands-on service to the children and families of Haiti.

3. Share the needs with your family and friends. Be a Champion for the people of Haiti, let others know how they can support Hope for the Hungry and help change a nation, one life at a time. (Always remember, even if you can't give telling others about an organization is also valuable). 

BONUS SHARES - Upcoming initiatives I personally love.  
  • Sole to Soul is an annual shoe and backpack drive for orphans. Last year, children and parents could go on line and select shoes and backpacks to give to a specific child (and know that child's name). This year's Sole to Soul campaign should be coming soon. Follow Hope for the Hungry on Facebook to make sure you don't miss it. (I'll share it on my Facebook and blog too). 
  • Teacher training for Hope for the Hungry. This July, my friend and other educators will be training the teachers at 4 schools with an emphasis on hands-on learning and improving the utilization of centers, stations, a Science lab/tools, folder activities, etc. She will be taking every bit of the supplies for both the training and their classroom with her. Classrooms are incredibly primitive and resources are limited. Access to technology is non-existent...and in most cases, so is access to electricity.) She will be putting an Amazon "wish list" together soon for this training program. If you want to make sure you know about the wish list, please email me personally (jennifer at, and I will make sure you receive an email with the details when they are available. 

Empowering kids to give and introducing them to organizations that serve matters.

Even though my boys are young, I like to encourage them to consider giving some of their money (piggy bank) or collecting money themselves when we give. I think this type of engagement is quite valuable, so I wanted to share some ideas for ways that kids can get involved in raising funds for organizations across the world (or right here at home):

  • Coffee Can Spare Change Collection - We did this for one month to raise funds for No Kid Hungry during Hunger Action Month and raised over $40 by simply collecting our change. 
  • Host a Garage Sale - I have known youth who have pooled together and hosted a garage/yard sale with all proceeds going to a specific charity. At these type of sales, also having a donation jar works well too. 
  • Lemonade Stand/Bake Sale - With an after school program I used to run, we would do an annual bake sale and carnival to raise funds for a charity. 
  • Take a Reading Pledge - I loved seeing this Feeding Through Reading effort of Childhood Beckons where her son got individuals to donate canned food items for every book he read during a specific time period. 
  • Be Open-Minded and Creative - Talk to your children and see what ideas they have for helping others. Maybe they'll turn a birthday party into a service party to support a charity or will want to ask neighbors if they can do yard work to raise money or they may have a specific crafting or art talent and will choose to host a craft sale or art show. You never know where your child's passion and interest might lead. 

How do you engage your children in serving others? Do you have a creative fundraising activity or donation item collection activity you've done as a family? Please share. #Compassion2014

You might also like:
Random Acts of Kindness Week
14 Days RAK Challenge
Moms Fighting Hunger Activities

1 comment:

  1. LOVE this post! What a great idea to connect giving across the world to your lives at home. Wonderful act of kindness! Thanks for joining in with the 100 Acts of Kindness Project!