Q. I learned through my sponsored friend’s family profile that she sleeps on a straw mat, and I would like to buy her a bed. Is there a way to make an extra contribution for my sponsored friend beyond the $30 monthly sponsorship contribution?
A. CFCA has several funds designed to address special circumstances of sponsored friends and their families. If your friend tells you of a special circumstance through their letters and you want to make a special contribution, contact Sponsor Services for assistance.
CFCA and our field staff will work with your sponsored friend and family to use your contribution effectively. Once your friend’s needs have been addressed, any unused portion of the funds may be used to help another member of your sponsored friend’s family or another person in the CFCA community.
Special needs funds allow you to help address critical needs identified by your sponsored friend or family that go beyond what regular monthly sponsorship can cover. Needs may include medical emergencies, home furnishing items, housing repairs or assistance in times of financial crisis.
Please note that donations for special needs must be handled through Sponsor Services.
For more information, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call Sponsor Services at (800) 875-6564 Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Central time.
By Sreekanth Gundoji, CFCA communications liaison in India
People in south central India spent today marking a new beginning as we celebrated the festival of Ugadi. Ugadi is a new year for the Telugu people.
Telugu is the local language in the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh. Children, families and aging friends in CFCA’s Hyderabad project speak Telugu.
The name of this new year is Vijaya, which means success. Our new calendar will start from this day onward.
We prepare a special dish to start the new year. It’s called ugadi pachhadi (pachhadi means pickle).
Ugadi pachhadi has a traditional value. It’s a mixture of six varieties of tastes symbolizing six feelings, good and bad, that everyone experiences in life.
In the spirit of the Telugu new year, we’d like to offer this ugadi pachhadi recipe. Note the special meaning of each ingredient.
- 1 cup of sugar, signifying happiness (the traditional sugar used is jaggery, made from sugar cane, date palms or coconut)
- 3 cups of tamarind juice, signifying disgust because of the sour taste
- 1 1/2 tablespoons of neem flower petals, signifying sadness
- 1/4 tablespoon of salt, signifying fear
- 1/2 tablespoon of pepper, signifying anger
- 3 tablespoons of unripe, green mango pieces, signifying surprise
1. Mix all the above listed items in a bowl. (This signifies that everyone has to accept all life experiences equally.)
2. Serve in cups.
Happy Ugadi, Telugu new year!
Meet Marcelline, a 36-year-old mother of four children in Madagascar. She found a creative way to help her family and break gender barriers, by repairing bicycles! One of her children,12-year-old Elie Jean, is sponsored through CFCA.
Life is very difficult. My husband walked out on us, leaving me with the responsibility of caring for our four children. Luckily, one of my children was sponsored through CFCA.
I tried my best to put my other children in school, but unfortunately one dropped out because I could not keep up with the school fees.
I hardly make enough money to support my children. I thank God because CFCA stepped in and assisted me with the educational expenses for my son. Read more
By Emily Soetaert, CFCA correspondent
If you’re aware of healthy eating trends or are environmentally conscious, chances are you’ve heard of (and may have eaten) quinoa.
Pronounced “keen-WAH,” this South American grain has recently taken the western world by storm. Its unusual taste and high nutrition value (particularly in the protein area) give many a reason to love it.
What we may not know, however, is that increased demand for quinoa has created some unintended consequences.
Before quinoa’s spike in popularity, the crop could be purchased in Bolivia for less than $4 a pound. That price has more than doubled to $8 a pound.
Many South American families who previously relied on quinoa for daily nourishment can no longer afford to purchase it.
According to a column in The Guardian, for many people living in Peru and Bolivia, quinoa now costs more than chicken because of rising costs and overseas demands.
Adelio, who helps cultivate quinoa and is the father of a sponsored child, Pamela, in Bolivia, said quinoa is an important food in the local diet.
“Families in rural areas usually eat what they produce, and quinoa is part of their diets,” Adelio said. “Quinoa is a very fragile crop to produce, and it takes about six months before picking the crop.”
Fortunately, families in the CFCA program in Bolivia still have access to this dietary staple.
“We still have families who work farming the quinoa as well as other crops to be able to feed their families,” Adelio said. “They help each other by trading crops that they produce over the years.”
Through sponsorship support and their own ingenuity, families in the CFCA program are able to cope with economic challenges such as rising food prices.
Besides its nutritional value, quinoa has the added benefit of being an environmentally friendly crop.
“The demand for quinoa is large because it is a natural product, which does not require chemicals to enhance it,” Adelio said. “For this reason, it is less harmful for the environment.”
Our most recent Twitter chat focused on international travel, and one part of the chat featured packing and traveling tips that any traveler might find useful. Thanks to our chat participants for sharing these helpful tips!
A6 it’s a small thing but have a disposable camera with you in case all your hi tech stuff fails and/or you go someplace messy #cfcachat
— Paula Kiger (@biggreenpen) March 19, 2013
— Becky Spachek (@RedSpachek) March 19, 2013
A6-Notify bank and credit card co so they don’t keep calling you to ask about your charges #cfcachat
— Ashley Shouse (@ashleyCFCA) March 19, 2013