Before Brangelina there was Becky who had dolls of all nationalities and pretended it was an orphanage, sometimes her little sister was allowed to help and sometimes not. Her favorite ride has always been “It’s a Small World” at Disney World, Space Mountain her least favorite as a child. Now the little girl is an adult and still wants to feel that she’s doing good in the world. She’s not in a mentality to have children, wants to feel she’s making a difference for someone. Someone faraway she can think of and know her influence hasn’t stayed so close. Since Brangelina appears to have stolen her macrocosm ideal of a family, she will settle for sponsoring a child.

And that’s just what I did last week! Something I’ve wanted to do for quite some time and haven’t really found the right organizational fit. My second day in SF (Man Fran is so out, and abbreviations are back in), I met a guy who came all the way from South Africa to work for Children International. I must have looked more approachable than the man next to me with Teret’s because he asked me if I’d heard of the organization and if I wanted to sponsor a child.

I know the arguments about helping children in America and I do my part to give money locally and globally. Consistently I go back to even the poorest of the poor in America has a completely different experience of the poorest of the poor in Africa and it’s important to note those differences. Not that one is less important, but that there are varying levels of need.

I realize this isn’t a new concept (unlike the Madonna and Brangelina phenomena), but it hadn’t caught on with anyone I knew. A lot of groups seemed missionary-based and I didn’t want there to be a religious context for my giving. My child is 10-year old Mousumi in India. She likes drawing, playing with friends, and learning about languages. Did I mention her family makes $47 per month? My sponsorship is only $22!!??

Before there was Brangelina saving children around the world, there was Becky. Before Becky there was Children International.


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