Category Archives: Region

Building homes for elders
Nov 21 2014

Small donations = Big change

Funding for Homes helps repair leaky roofs and collapsing structures and make other improvements families couldn’t otherwise afford. And if enough people contribute just a small amount, together we can change someone’s life.

Sponsored elder Pawn, 76, and her daughter, Pala, 31, live in India. Their small home had mud walls and a thatched roof. They slept on thin mats on the floor, and there was no running water or latrine.

Pala is mentally and physically disabled, and Pawn was concerned for her daughter’s well-being because of the lack of sanitation.

But the most immediate concern for Pawn was the roof. In southern India, heavy monsoon rains are a yearly occurrence and led to further deterioration of their home. The thatched roof was full of holes and on the verge of collapse. Termites infested the roof and walls, adding to the damage caused by heavy rains.

Unbound staff in Pawn’s community saw the condition of her home and knew something had to be done. With the home’s extreme state of disrepair, they found it would cost less and be far more efficient to build a new house rather than try to repair the old one. Because of donations to Homes, they were able to begin the process of building a new home for not only Pawn and Pala, but several other sponsored elders in the community whose homes were also in danger of collapsing.

On a recent trip to India, Scott Wasserman, president and CEO of Unbound, took part in the ribbon-cutting ceremony for the newly finished homes. He represented the many people whose donations have made it possible for Pawn and her daughter to move into a new home built with brick and concrete.

“Some of [the elders] had tears as they held my face in their wrinkled hands,” Scott said. “They never dreamed that they would live their final years with the dignity provided by their new homes.”

Pawn no longer has to worry about termites in the walls or monsoon rains pouring in. Because of support for Homes from generous people like you, Pawn is able to provide a more comfortable home for her daughter.

Giving Tuesday is just around the corner. This year, help a family achieve a more dignified living situation. Donate to Homes.

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World Toilet Day
Nov 19 2014

World Toilet Day: Solving the sanitation crisis

World Toilet Day

This latrine in Uganda afforded no privacy and is no longer usable.

By Elizabeth Alex, community outreach and media relations director for Unbound

The United Nations has designated Wednesday, Nov. 19, as a day to talk about toilets.

At first glance it may seem an odd topic to dwell on for a day. Most people don’t spend a lot of time thinking about toilets.

Unless you happen to be one of the people without access to one.

According to the United Nations, almost 2,000 children die every day from preventable diarrheal diseases.

Keep reading

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Sponsor a child
Nov 17 2014

How you can help Shiva stay in school

Sponsor a child

Shiva, 10, from India

He stands straight and tall for his picture. Looking sharp in a buttoned-up shirt, he sports a shy but hopeful smile.

A sixth-grader in India, Shiva just arrived at the Unbound office from prayer. The white lines on his forehead are called tikka and are part of the Hindu prayer tradition.

Shiva plays cricket, a national pastime in India, he celebrates Diwali, the festival of lights, and he enjoys poetry in his native language, Hindi.

This delightful boy respectfully requests you sponsor him.

Shiva is one of three children supported by their dad, Gopi, who rides a bike selling tea door-to- door in India. Gopi works long days but doesn’t bring home enough income to provide for a family of five.

Shiva has a passion for school. Especially math and science.

“I like playing with magnets,” he said. “I can show you how the North Pole and South Pole attract.”

But the future of Shiva’s education is a stress for his mother, Laxmi.

“Financial problems are haunting us,” she says. “We are struggling with the education expenses.”

With help that a sponsorship brings, Shiva will remain in school. His parents will see some of their financial burden lifted. Shiva can continue to develop his love of learning and reach a goal of improving his English skills.

You can help this bright young boy reach his full potential.

Please sponsor Shiva today.

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Flocking flamingos
Nov 14 2014

Building homes with the help of pink flamingos

Flocking flamingos

A lawn visited by the Woodmont youth group’s “flocking flamingos.”

You wake up one morning, and as you’re going about your normal routine you glance out at your front lawn. But it looks a bit different than usual. Somehow, a flock of plastic flamingos has made its way to your lawn.

Over the last few months, members of the Woodmont Christian Church in Tennessee have experienced “flockings” courtesy of their youth group. It’s not a prank but one of the fundraising strategies the youth group developed for their “Guats Up” initiative.

Their goal? To build a house in Guatemala for a family that needs one.

Keep reading

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Sponsor a child
Nov 12 2014

Putting Gandhi’s wisdom into action

Martin Kraus

Martin Kraus (second from right), director of finance for Unbound, with his family

By Martin Kraus, director of finance for Unbound

“You must become the change you want to see.”

As I walked through the Mumbai airport in India, I couldn’t help but notice this quote on a huge banner hanging overhead. Most of us, whether from India or not, easily recognize this quote as being from Mahatma Gandhi, one of India’s most influential and respected leaders. What struck me are the many ways in which I am privileged to see Gandhi’s quote being put into action all over the world.

At Unbound, our sponsors take this quote to heart by taking action. Their sponsorship allows them to “become the change” that this world so badly needs, and in doing so, they make significant changes in the worlds of others. Recently, while performing an audit of Unbound’s office in Manila, Philippines, I met two beautiful examples.

Read more

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Sponsor a youth
Nov 10 2014

Fighting to be a good person in Honduras

Sponsor a youth

Fernando and his mother, Maria.

by Alexandra Stonestreet, project manager for Unbound

In recent years, Honduras has become known for corruption, gang violence and drug trafficking. It holds the unfortunate distinction of being home to some of the worst statistics imaginable. Amid the poverty and mounting violence, a bright spot emerges.

His name is Fernando.

Read Fernando’s story

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Voices of Unbound: Madagascar
Nov 7 2014

Setting ego aside to let music in

By Barclay Martin, new channels coordinator for Unbound

It is an outlandish thing to make your living as a singer/songwriter, and one of the lessons it taught me early was that in order to make it, you have to hustle.

You have to release the notion that just because a morning of coffee and scratching in a notebook renders a song the world is compelled to respond. There’s a brawn to art, the idea that beneath the lustrous promise of a new creation there is muscle and metal driving it. With each release, there is a constant chirping in my brain, beckoning people to pay attention for a moment to what I’m doing. It is a daily battle for a sliver of presence in a world more infinitely layered than we could ever know.

Keep reading

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