FAQs

Why should I sponsor a child?

You can make a massive difference to an orphan’s life with a 50p-a-day sponsorship through OrphanKind. Your regular donation is incredibly valuable in helping to transform a life and give a child hope for the future. Your support helps not only your sponsored child but also the other children on the programme - whether in an Orphan Home, a school, or a community, it will create positive changes for the child and those around them. Our sponsorship scheme also benefits many other people, such as foster mothers, who are often widows, and everyone else involved in the care and education of the orphans, by giving them security through employment and job satisfaction.

Can I choose which child to sponsor?

You can select in which country you would like to sponsor a child (Palestine, Pakistan, Sudan, Bangladesh, India, The Gambia, Senegal, South Africa or a Syrian refugee child) and whether you would like to sponsor a boy or a girl. If you set up a sponsorship online, simply select the country from the options and write in the comments box if you have a preference for sponsoring a boy or girl. If you set up your sponsorship by post or phone, simply tell us your preference. We will do our best to meet your requests. If you do not specify, we will select an orphan where we feel the sponsorship is most needed.

How does my sponsored child benefit?

The orphans benefit in many ways that may differ according to their specific needs and their project. Overall, the sponsorships pay for school fees, uniform, school books, stationery, and school meals. In necessary cases, they also provide the children with loving homes and caring foster mothers. Each child receives an education, nutritious meals and healthcare.

Our project-based sponsorship scheme ensures that all of the needs of our orphans are met by bringing together the support of several sponsors. This means that the donor community can share the collective reward of giving orphans quality care. We aim to give all needy orphans every opportunity afforded to more fortunate children within their society. Quality education is an integral part of all of our orphan sponsorships – ensuring that your sponsored child has the chance to learn will ultimate help to build a future free from poverty.

Each of our Orphan Homes employs a dedicated foster mother, and also tutors, security staff, healthcare professionals and other personnel, to ensure the children are cared for in every way, feel happy and secure, and get the encouragement and inspiration they need. Furthermore, there are regular trips and outings and monthly visits from respected members of society, such as doctors, teachers and business owners, who talk with the children about the opportunities available to them and how they can build brighter futures for themselves and their community.

In this way, we can create future leaders and strong independent adults.

What information and updates will I receive?

You will receive a welcome pack, which includes a profile of your sponsored child, and information about their background and their country of residence. Twice a year we will send you a feedback reports on your sponsored child’s progress. One will be a school report describing their educational and personal progress. The other will be a feedback report from the guardian highlighting some further information about the child. The reports will also include a recent photograph, a brief message from and a drawing from your child (depending on their age and writing ability).

Can I visit my sponsored child?

Penny Appeal are committed to protecting children from harm and abuse. We recognise and take seriously our responsibility to provide an environment which promotes the safety of the child at all times.
The children that are cared for in our sponsorship programmes are highly vulnerable and therefore we do not feel that it is appropriate for individuals to visit the children they sponsor. Such short-term visits can cause harm to a child’s development and emotional wellbeing and cause attachment problems; visits can also confuse children.
Penny Appeal also cannot supervise individual visits and many of the partners we work with on sponsorship programmes would likewise not able to accommodate the administrative and logistical impacts of accompanying sponsors on visits.

Therefore, to ensure Penny Appeal is meeting our commitments to the protection and wellbeing of both the children we work with, and you as a visitor, individual visits to children are not allowed.

Can I write to my sponsored orphan or send a gift?

Yes, it is possible to write to your orphan. It is everyone’s responsibility here at Penny Appeal to promote the welfare of all children and young people, and to keep them safe. To ensure we are meeting these standards, we are committed to practice in a way that protects them. We have a responsibility to provide an environment which promotes the safety of the child at all times.

It is essential therefore that sponsors maintain appropriate boundaries in their contacts with the children and young people they sponsor. Communications that give the impression of being intimate, overly familiar and include open expressions of affection, whether intended or not, are therefore not permitted in any communication between sponsor and child. To help with constructing an appropriate letter to the child you sponsor please have a look at the following tips.

• Show genuine interest. Respectfully ask about your sponsored child’s family, friends, daily life, favourite activities and goals for the future.
• Share something about yourself. A great way to build a bond is by sharing interesting details about your own life and interests. Children enjoy hearing about your friends and family, what sports you like and the foods you eat. Find common ground by emphasizing shared interests and experiences with your sponsored child
• Encourage your child. Words of encouragement go a long way. Many children don’t have a supportive, positive voice in their lives. Celebrate your sponsored child’s achievements and offer praise for their skills and talents. Root for his or her dreams. • Write simply and clearly. Use language that’s free of slang or complicated ideas that may be difficult to translate or that your sponsored child may not understand. Also remember, your child may still be learning to read.
• Learn about their culture. Ask about traditions, holidays and special occasions in your sponsored child’s country. Share details about your own traditions.
• Less is more. Avoid possible confusion by limiting the topics and questions in your letters (two or three is good), and don’t expect your sponsored child to always address every comment or question. We recommend limiting the number of letters you send to three or four a year.
• Avoid making big promises. To avoid any disappointment, it is best not to promise things that in reality may be difficult to deliver
• Be sensitive and appropriate. Keep in mind that your sponsored child is likely living without many things many of us take for granted, so try not to focus on material items. Try not to write about politics or culturally sensitive subjects, and avoid writing about your personal problems where possible
• Do not use suggestive language and avoid topics and terms that can be interpreted in these ways such as talking about ‘Love’ which is overly intimate. Avoid being too familiar and using open expressions of affection. This ensures that the child, their parents/guardian or anyone else reading the letter such as translators or Penny Appeal staff cannot misconstrue your intentions.
• Don’t share last names or contact Information.

In order to maintain the orphaned child’s privacy, we will not pass on to you the detailed report about the child’s background, address or other contact details.

If you wish to write to your orphan, then you can email it to info@pennyappeal.org or send to

Penny Appeal

Cross Street Chambers

Cross Street

WF1 3BW

Can I send a gift or cash to my sponsored orphan?

We often receive requests from our donors wanting to send gifts or cash to their sponsored child. This is something we do not generally accommodate because of the associated costs with delivering the item and also because we are mindful of all of the children that we look after. Our sponsored orphans often reside in homes or villages where there are many other poor children and orphans. For us to only deliver gifts or cash to only a select number of orphans could make other children feel deprived, disappointed and jealous. For this reason, we encourage you to donate to the Orphan Fund for the orphan children in the region or institution. We will then use this amount to ensure they all receive gifts at special times of the year such as Eid.

For how long do I have to commit to sponsorship?

There is no minimum period - you can sponsor for as long as you are able – but think how rewarding it will be to support your child through many years of continuing care and education.

I can no longer afford the monthly payment. What can I do?

Pleasget in touch with us before cancelling your monthly payment, so that you can still help us provide life-saving aid. It also helps if you tell us first so that we can update our records and cancel the sponsorship. If you are unable to sponsor a child for £15 a month, there is another way you can help! Donations of any amount can also be made to our Orphan Fund – this Fund is used to further support the project, and the children in general, through any additional expenses that may come their way.

Where does Penny Appeal Build orphan homes?

We build Orphan Homes in Africa and Asia.

Can I build a complete Orphan Home?

Absolutely! You could get together with friends, family and work colleagues to raise enough money to build an entire orphan home. Or maybe you could do it with your brothers and sisters at the mosque or through a corporate social responsibility scheme at work. When you build an Orphan Home, we’ll then dedicate it in your name, the name of a loved one, or however you choose. It could be easier than you think to raise the money – why not join #TeamOrange, the Penny Appeal fundraising family? You can take part in big challenges and host your own events and activities to raise money, and we have a dedicated team to support you with all of your fundraising activities. Sign up now or call 03000 11 11 11

What facilities and staff do Orphan Homes have?

Orphan Homes can vary in size and facilities according to the area and requirements. Usually, the home will have several bedrooms for the orphans, plus the foster mother’s bedroom, and all of the other areas you would expect – bathrooms, kitchen, dining room, study living area, outside play space. We build our orphan homes to high standards and equip and furnish them with all of the things needed for happy, healthy childhoods. We also ensure that there is a back-up power facility, as electricity supplies can be unreliable. Orphan homes are run by a team of dedicated staff, including loving foster mothers, security and admin teams; with input and visits from teachers and health professionals.

Who runs the Orphan Home and looks after the children?

Dedicated foster mothers live at the Orphan Homes to provide day-to-day love and care for the children. The local Penny Appeal office oversees the running of the Orphan Homes, ensuring that any maintenance issues are addressed, liaising with school teachers to monitor the children’s progress, and seeing to the many aspects that make up a happy home.

Is my payment secure?

We only use secure systems with banking standard safety features to make sure that your payment and financial data cannot be compromised. All online payments are securely processed no financial data is retained on our servers.

Can I make a regular payment for an Orphan Home?

Yes, small payments made regularly can make a big difference – this is the Penny Appeal way. You can set up an affordable monthly Direct Debit or standing order and help us build Orphan Homes for just pennies per day. Automatic, monthly payments are the most efficient way to support Penny Appeal as they reduce the cost of administration. Regular commitments allow us to plan ahead and ensure that we have a reliable source of income to provide aid.

Why should I Gift Aid my sponsorship or donation?

It really helps us if you can Gift Aid your sponsorship or donation – it increases the value of your donation by 25%.If you are a UK taxpayer, selecting to 'Gift Aid' your donation (either by checking the box online or ticking the box on a paper donation form) will make it worth more to us at no extra cost to you.
 
In order for Penny Appeal to reclaim the tax you have paid on your donations, you must have paid income or capital gains tax (in the UK) equal to the tax that will be claimed by all the charities that you donate to (currently 25p for every £1 you give) in the same tax year. 

The tax reclaimed will be used to help fund the administration costs of the charity so more of your actual donation can go directly to those in need. 

Gift Aid can be added to your donation if you are donating your own money. We regret that Gift Aid cannot be reclaimed if you are paying donations you collected from others, even if everyone was a UK taxpayer. Neither can it be reclaimed on donations made by companies. Other taxes such as VAT and Council Tax do not qualify. Gift Aid cannot be claimed on payments for any ticketed events.

Please notify us if you are no longer eligible, wish to cancel this declaration, change your name or home address or if you no longer pay sufficient tax on your income and/or capital gains. 

By ticking the box you agree that you are eligible to claim Gift Aid as explained above and that we can treat this donation, any donations made in the last 4 years and future donations as Gift Aid and that  you understand that if you pay less Income Tax and/or Capital Gains Tax than the amount of Gift Aid claimed on all your donations in that tax year it is your responsibility to pay any difference.