Theo Moumtzidis takes sponsorship so seriously he brings it to work with him. His company, Delos Advisors, in New York City, makes child sponsorship a company-wide project. The more projects staffers take on, the more kids they sponsor. And, each time the Delos team sponsors a new child, they put his or her picture on their wall as a reminder.
We chatted with Theo to learn more.
I was born and raised in Greece; I have been living in New York for 20+ years. I am a management consultant who advises financial institutions. I started my own firm last year after a career with some of the industry’s most respected companies.
I got involved when I ran into a couple of CI sponsorship recruiters on Columbus Avenue and 68th Street. A public person, who I thought very poorly of, had just made derogatory remarks about CI — so I took that as an endorsement. Not the most typical reason to get involved, I guess! But I am happy to have joined CI even if in an unusual way!
Watching the child I’ve been sponsoring since 2009, Leo, grow from a kid into a teenager.
Another has been each time we add a picture frame on the wall of our office with another CI sponsored child. We so far have four frames and four empty ones already hanging on the wall. These serve as a reminder of our target to sponsor four more children by the end of this year.
Each time I receive a letter from Leo, I always wonder what I’d be doing today had I been born in his challenging family, social, economic, education, health and nutrition conditions. I think of how that gap between myself as a kid of the “haves” vs. him as the “have nots” can be narrowed by CI, so that every child in the world — no matter where he or she is born — can have the opportunity to grow and become a productive and successful member of the community.
One of my high school teachers — out of the blue — once told the whole class, “Whatever happens to you in your life is your fault” — the implication being to not blame people and situations nor to use hardship as an excuse but instead to focus on the self and your ability to overcome. Those words were pivotal at many crossroads in my life when it would have been easy and reasonable to throw in the towel, to underachieve, to lose ambition and determination.
He has a positive outlook on life, a genuine smile and confidence. He appears to be happy with the little he has, appreciates it and tries to make the most out of his life.
Maybe I can share my aspiration. Before starting my firm in January 2015, I worked for another firm for almost 15 years as a partner. I would, in a typical year, be “selling” and managing seven to 10 projects. The four we have had in the last 18 months, while a very successful start, is less than what I know I can do. I hope to get back to that higher number and surpass it. Once this happens, we can add seven to 10 children each year.
With 20 years at least until I retire, I hope to see 200 picture frames on our walls filled with the faces of children who will have a better shot at a happy and productive life.
Every child has an innate power to do good or even great things for themselves, their families, their communities and the world.
These powers are suppressed when a child grows up in poverty and may even be used for the opposite of “doing good.”
“Unleashing the power” to me means that CI — through its own power of education, social support, medical help, community actions, etc. — is helping EACH child unleash that innate power to become all they can be.