Your global action tackle box

Moving beyond Child Sponsorship

This educational tackle box provides materials and tools to examine current ideas and beliefs about Child Sponsorship (CS). The contents of this tackle box are drawn from a research study which was designed to cultivate a deeper understanding of CS and to explore alternative critical and justice-oriented actions aimed at “moving beyond CS”.

In other words, this tackle box will arm you with important information and tools to tackle complex questions about child sponsorship in relation to global action and justice.

Before we start:

Child sponsorship is a form of charity involving a one-to-one relationship between a donor, usually from the Global North, and a child, usually from the Global South, where the donor (or sponsor) gives a monthly payment designated for a specific child (usually selected by the sponsor from a collection of children’s photos). In return, the sponsor receives a photo of the child, letter exchanges, an annual report on how the child is progressing, and a general sense that they have a personal connection with this child.

There are many reasons why, as a society, we need to move beyond child sponsorship (CS). Reasons discussed in this tackle box range from unethical use of children for fund raising; CS does not address the real issues behind global poverty; CS reflects colonial relations and structures between North and South; and CS is based on a ‘feel good’ approach that does not educate sponsors on their own role in global poverty.