It’s always about one child—whether it’s our sponsorship program offering practical help and hope for the future, or providing surgery to remove a life-threatening tumor. It’s always about helping one child.
This is our passion—children. We provide the opportunity for children to become productive leaders and effect change in their families and communities. To change a culture, we start with one child.
To matter is “to have importance or consequence.” Think of how your own child has significance in your life—you would stop at nothing to protect your child from danger or harm. Whether a child attends a school in India or lives in the bush of Africa, that child matters to us—and we are called to provide him opportunity and hope in Christ.
The vision of One Child Matters goes back to 1954, when missionaries Mark and Huldah Buntain arrived in Kolkata (Calcutta), India to begin more than three decades of ministry among Kolkata’s poor and needy. God was moving, and the ministry was incorporated as Mission of Mercy in 1974.
In the year following Mark Buntain’s death in 1989, Mission of Mercy came under the leadership of Bethesda Ministries who committed to provide administrative and financial support to the organization.
Although the ministry’s focus began to expand beyond India to other countries, the intent remained the same: to continue to proclaim the message of the grace and redemption available through Jesus Christ while meeting the practical needs of the poor, one child at a time.
Their purpose and calling was confirmed in that vision—focusing on the one, just as Jesus did when the crowds pressed in around Him. Their goal to find others who believe that one child matters and empower them to change that child’s life moved from a statement of belief to the core philosophy of their ministry, to the actual name of the ministry itself.
Today, One Child Matters is working in 15 of the poorest countries in the world, bringing hope, truth, life, love, and mercy to more than 40,000 children through child sponsorship. To God be the glory!
One Child Matters believes that a holistic approach—ministering to all of a child’s needs, not just a select few— is the most effective method of promoting child development. This is why they carefully and thoughtfully minister to each child’s spiritual, physical, socio-emotional, and
Much like a flower, a child will grow and mature to a limited extent regardless of whether or not each specific need is met. But the degree of nurturing a child receives will determine whether or not that child truly blossoms. By facilitating the holistic development of children under their care, One Child Matters helps a child reach his or her God-given potential.
One Child Matters is not seeking to westernize children or merely provide a handout; they do not promote a particular cultural mindset or create a state of dependence. Instead, One Child Matters hopes that by nurturing the needs of the whole child, the ministry is equipping children with the ability to fulfill God’s specific calling on their life.
HOW IT WORKS
One Child Matters serves over 40,000 children in 15 countries throughout the world. One Child Matters provides children with activities and services that help them develop holistically at child development centers (CDCs). There are two categories of CDCs: church-based and partner-based.
It is easy to get overwhelmed by the statistics:
UNNOTICED: Nearly 9 million children die before their fifth birthday from preventable diseases each year.
HINDERED: In the developing world, 101 million children are not attending primary school.
EXPLOITED: Each year, 150 million children 5 to 14 years old are forced into child labor.
ORPHANED: 17.5 million children have lost one or both parents due to AIDS.
But Jesus didn’t look at people and see statistics— He saw their needs, yes, but also their hope and promise. Jesus recognized that a simple touch could make the biggest difference. And when pressed by the crowds, He still focused on individuals.
So instead of getting paralyzed by the overwhelming need, One Child Matters wants to minister the way Jesus did: by focusing on the individual—on one individual child—because that one child matters.
One person can make an eternal difference in the life of a child.
One person can open the door to a stable, supportive environment that encourages education and development. One person can bring health and hope.
You may look at the statistics and ask, “Can I really make a difference?” Yes! One Child Matters truly believes that sponsorship is the ideal way to change a child’s life. Through sponsorship, you can invest in a child’s growth while developing a profound and meaningful relationship.
Will you be the one who lightens the load poverty bears on one child?
Will you help that child grow in confidence and hope? Will you remind her that she matters? That she, too, can make a difference in someone’s life? That she can transform her family, her community, her world?
You can. Will you?