I've just added a quiz I wrote at Quibblo.com to help fellow Canadians choose a child sponsorship programme that's right for them. There are so many to choose from, and I'd like to encourage EVERYONE to find one that they can feel good about supporting.
I don't know how long that quiz will last for (and if I'll get in trouble for borrowing logos for use in the answers!), so I'm going to list the organizations I've researched here.
Not only does it honestly feel good to help, your dollar or so a day makes all the difference in the world to a child living in a third-world country.
This is also a surprisingly economical entertainment option for families or for teachers to provide their classes with - exchanging letters and drawings with your sponsor child is all part of the experience, and the educational value of this is immeasurable. Your children will have such a personal understanding of what life is like as a poor child in that country.
Here are 10 different Canadian child sponsorship programmes, arranged in several ways.
By cost (descending):
$35 per month - World Vision Canada Child Sponsorship, PLAN Canada Child Sponsorship, Christian Children's Fund of Canada Child Sponsorship
$33 per month - SOS Children's Villages Child Sponsorship
$25 per month - Save the Children Child Guardianship, Salvation Army Child Sponsorship, SOS Children's Villages (Village Sponsorship)
$20 per month - Canadian Feed the Children Child Sponsorship
$10 per month - FTC (Feed the Children) Canada Feed-a-Child Sponsorship
$__ per month (name your amount) - UNICEF Canada Global Parent Sponsorship
By global presence (most countries, descending):
150+ countries - UNICEF Canada
132 countries - SOS Children's Villages Canada
120+ countries - Save the Children Canada
118 countries - FTC Canada
90+ countries - World Vision Canada
48 countries - PLAN Canada
22 countries - Salvation Army Canada
7 countries - Christian Children's Fund of Canada
4 countries - Canadian Feed the Children
By reported donation breakdown (percent that goes directly to the child and child's community), descending:
Note: quiz lists Canadian Feed the Children as highest. Whoops. Can't undo...!
100% - Salvation Army Canada
89%* - FTC Canada *(by my calculations only, based on 2009 annual report data)
86% - Canadian Feed the Children
82.5% - SOS Children's Villages Canada
82.1% - World Vision Canada
82% - Save the Children Canada
80%+ - Christian Children's Fund of Canada
80% - UNICEF Canada (in general, not child sponsorship programme specifically)
78.9% - PLAN Canada
By mandate/core values:
Non-denominational/inclusive of all faiths: SOS Children's Villages Canada, UNICEF, PLAN Canada, Save the Children Canada, Canadian Feed the Children
Christian (some of which are inclusive of all faiths): World Vision Canada, FTC Canada, Salvation Army Canada, Christian Children's Fund of Canada
I hope this helps you find an organization or programme that suits your personality and needs. It costs so, so little to make an ENORMOUS impact on a child's life! Please start giving today - you will NOT regret it!