Graduates with gratitude: CI’s youth look back as they move ahead

success stories from our graduating youth PROVE EDUCATIONAL CHARITY WORKS

Graduation is always a reason for celebration. Although it is often bittersweet, the twinge of sadness is outweighed by the joy of reaching a major milestone in life, and by the excitement of what lies ahead.

For our sponsored youth, who began their young lives with so many disadvantages and pitfalls, graduation from CI’s program is truly a big deal. Thanks to the support of their sponsors, as well as the perseverance and commitment of their families and the graduates themselves, youth are equipped with the education, skills and knowledge they need to become self-reliant adults.

Stepping out into the world with hope and confidence, their futures look much brighter, and much different, thanks to the advantages and opportunities sponsorship provides. Each CI graduate has their own success story about the obstacles they overcame to get this far.  

Hear about it from the grads themselves:

The support of sponsorship allows many people to fulfill their dreams and deep desires of their heart and improve their quality of life. Meeting people who are devoted and committed marked this entire period of my life.

I hope and desire from the bottom of my heart that you continue saving lives, sowing dreams and creating smiles. Today, as I graduate, I feel a little bit of sadness, but the gratitude and hope are bigger. I only have to say: THANKS!

Graduate Youth
19, Colombia

Thank you for having helped me all these years, in financial support and in so many opportunities I had to improve in life and be a better person.

I would like to invite you to give more people like me an opportunity to have this beautiful experience, to be part of CI, to study and receive classes that also help, as it did with me. Sometimes help is needed because our economic situation is difficult.

I want to find a job and get ahead. I want to learn cooking, be a chef and maybe study to be a lawyer, for a better future.

Graduate Youth
19, Ecuador

I am a BA Sociology student. When I joined CI, they gave me many opportunities regarding my career options and many other things.

I want to convey my special thanks to my sponsor, who taught me and gave me the support and encouragement and lots of other things, so that I can fulfil my dreams. Thank you for giving so much strength and empowerment!

Graduate Youth
20, India

Sponsored girls graduate into frontline heroes

Using their strength, intelligence and bravery, former sponsored girls are now serving as medical workers on the frontlines of the coronavirus pandemic. Watch this video to see how they’re helping keep their communities safe and healthy when it matters most.

Graduate youth: Byron's path to management

For Byron, a graduate of the sponsorship program in Ecuador, landing a good job is a dream come true. Now managing half a dozen employees, the skills he learned didn’t just help him climb the rungs, they helped him learn how to live his best life.

Children International put me on the right track because they taught me what it means to be an agent of change: to be a social actor within communities that are often marginalized."


22, Graduate Youth
Quito, Ecuador

I remember that every year they called us to write letters for our sponsors. Well, every six months. In my case it was Mr. Thurston to whom, wherever he is, I thank him because without his support, I would not be where I am. I wouldn't be where I want to be.

I am an example of the hard work of an entire Children International team that coordinates to make the dreams of children and youths come true. I am very grateful to those who are sponsoring, to those who are donating a grain of sand for this world. They are changing lives, changing realities.

My words of thanks to the sponsors who are far from us is “Thank you.” Because of the distance, we cannot give them a hug. We cannot tell them in person how grateful we are for everything they have done for us. They are not only feeding, they are not just donating an amount of money; they are feeding dreams. They are donating better lives to people.

In the future, I would love to work in an organization that watches over the rights of children around the world, such as UNICEF or the UN, and associating it with CI would be the best thing. We could have a very big impact for communities by going to those that perhaps lack water, electricity.

I want to do a postgraduate degree in community psychology and be able to work in an agency where I can always be on the move, always be with people, doing social work.

This is my last year and only a few days are remaining with Children International. I want to thank the staff at the Centre from my heart; those who supported me and made me capable of doing something better with my life. Thank you!"


20, Graduate Youth
Kolkata, India

I have turned 19, and the time has come for me to bid adieu to my second family and step out for a future.It is an emotional time knowing that from now on, we will not be able to participate in these activities. But whatever we have learned from here since our childhood, it is time to apply in real-life.

I wish to become Company Secretary for which I have already started studying. I cleared my foundation tests and am preparing for the executive examinations. I am about to complete my final year of B.Com [business communications] very soon.

Facing the educational challenges ahead

Learn more about how your support helps our Education and Employability programs, making it possible for children and youth to break free from poverty and achieve their goals.

Education is a primary factor for upward economic mobility and escaping poverty.
Globally, major progress was made in the past decade toward boosting enrollment rates and improving access to education at all levels, especially for girls.

Still, in 2018, roughly 260 million children were out of school worldwide –
nearly one out of every five school-age children. Unfortunately, more than half of all global youth and children fail to meet minimum standards in math and reading.

As the pandemic spread, most nations temporarily closed their schools. This impacted more than nine out of 10 students globally.

By April 2020, more than 1.5 billion children and adolescents were out of school, including roughly 370 million young people who relied upon school meals and were forced to find other ways of meeting their daily nutritional needs. This was the largest educational disruption the modern world has ever faced. And it hit those who are most vulnerable the worst, threatening to undo the recent gains made in global education.


Source: United Nations Sustainable Development

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