Monday, June 11, 2012

ABOUT US

About Us
Kids First is an independent organization creating lasting change in the lives of children in need in Ethiopia. Recognized for our commitment to accountability, innovation and collaboration, our work takes us into the heart of communities, where we help children and families help themselves. We work with other organizations, governments, non-profits and a variety of local partners while maintaining our own independence without political agenda or religious orientation.

When disaster strikes our nation, Kids First is there to save lives with food, medical care and education and remains to help communities rebuild through long-term recovery programs. Kids First works to resolve the ongoing struggles children face every day — poverty, hunger, illiteracy and disease — and replaces them with hope for the future.

What we do
More than 5 months of experience working hand-in-hand, shoulder-to-shoulder with families and communities at home and abroad has taught us that poverty need not be a life sentence. By working directly in communities, Kids First’s approach to relief, recovery and ongoing development has nurtured the seeds of hope for many children and their families.

Child Protection: Kids First has been protecting children from abuse, neglect, exploitation and violence. Our programs focus on the most vulnerable children while aiming for the safety and well-being of all children.
 
Education and Child Development: Education is vital to lasting positive change in children’s lives. Yet for millions of children and youth in developing countries, education is beyond grasp. Kids First reaches the world’s most marginalized children – those who urgently need education to survive and thrive.

Health and Nutrition: Kids First works to ensure that children, their mothers and other caregivers have access to and use key health and nutrition services, as well as adopt healthy behaviors in both development and emergency situations. We use evidence-based interventions to address the major causes of illness, death and malnutrition, and continue to develop innovative strategies to deliver these services most effectively to as many people as possible, especially in resource-poor and emergency situations. 

HIV/AIDS: Kids First is responding to the global HIV/AIDS epidemic in Africa by partnering with communities to mobilize the resources necessary to tackle HIV/AIDS as well as supporting children and families in need. These partnerships focus on two primary goals: raising awareness about ways to prevent new infection and adopt healthy practices and providing care and support for children and families affected by the pandemic. 

Livelihoods: Children are more likely to be safe, educated and healthy when families have secure livelihoods. Kids First works with vulnerable families in Ethiopia to help ensure that they can afford to pay for basic needs and services for their children and provide access to sufficient, nutritious food all year round. We also offer assistance when shocks, such as rising food prices or natural or man-made disasters, threaten to devastate families. 

Sponsorships
Sponsorship provides resources for community education and health programs that are at the core of Kids First’s goal of improving children’s lives. Through sponsorship, caring individuals are matched with children in need to fund projects that make a real and sustainable difference. Honed by generations of experience and using the latest monitoring and evaluation techniques, sponsor-supported programs are based on meeting children’s needs at key stages in their physical, intellectual and Spiritual development, from early childhood to adolescence.

As an Individual Child sponsor, each year you will receive:
•  A Status Report on your Child
•  An updated photo
•  Drawing
•  Holiday Mailing
•  Optional Email Updates

Frequently Asked Questions About Sponsorship
Sponsorship is a special kind of giving that creates a relationship between the giver and the community in which you are helping Kids First to create real and lasting change. Join our sponsorship family now and together we can make the lives of children in need a little brighter.

Does sponsorship allow me to be matched with an actual child?
Individual child sponsors have the opportunity to choose a child (by gender and/or age) and to communicate with him or her if you so desire. This allows you, as an individual child sponsor, to connect with your sponsored child and to establish a friendship with him or her that will carry a special meaning for both of you.

You are encouraged – but not obliged – to build a friendship with your sponsored child. They are eager and excited to hear from you and about your life, and happy to share about theirs.

Letters and drawings from your child will allow you to learn more about daily life in their own words and experiences. The letters are in your child's own hand (a parent or sibling may help them if they are too young to write).

Their carefully drawn pictures and treasured words will enable you to share in the daily joys and struggles of your child's life as they grow and prosper.

How much does sponsorship cost?
For only $25 a month — less than a dollar a day — you can become a sponsor and help change the lives of children in need around the world. We have now twelve child sponsors who have supported us for over 5 months and we hope you will too!

How will my sponsorship contribution be spent?
Kids First strives to create lasting change for your sponsored child and their community through programs that focus on early childhood development, health and nutrition, as well as primary education.

Kids First has learned that one of the most effective ways of helping children is to combine your sponsorship gifts with those of other sponsors and donors - rather than giving them directly to your sponsored child. This system ensures that children in sponsorship communities, who may never have the opportunity to have a sponsor of their own, will still benefit from Kids First sponsorship programs.

You can feel confident that Kids First will spend your contributions wisely. In fiscal year 2012, Kids First spent 95 percent of all expenditures on program services.

How long will my sponsorship last?
That’s entirely up to you. Sponsorship is a voluntary, ongoing contribution. Many of our sponsors have promised to support  our work for at least as long as their sponsored kid finishes his/her college education or longer and we certainly hope that our relationship with you will be long-term as well.

Can I give a gift sponsorship?
Yes! You are able to share the gift of sponsorship with a loved one or colleague by selecting a sponsorship and entering the gift recipient’s information at the end of the enrollment form. The recipient will soon receive a gift card and welcome package introducing them to Kids First’s family of sponsors.

Why sponsor a child through Kids First?
Kids First's child sponsorship program creates real, lasting change for children and their communities. Our compassionate staffs show God's love to all people as they help build healthy communities for children in the world's most impoverished places. Kids First partners with sponsored children's communities over the long term to address critical needs and help communities become self-sustaining.

Who can I contact if I have questions about my sponsorship?
You may email to kidsfirstethiopia.gmail.com, or contact an associate at (520) 256 9475. Or please follow us on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/kidsfirstethiopia
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