Author Archives: Sarah

Victoria flourishes as a web developer after years of sponsorship


Victoria is an ambitious young woman from a hard-working Catholic family. She and her two siblings grew up near our Mangalagiri site in India. When the children were little, Victoria’s parents struggled with food insecurity, lack of adequate housing, and even lacked enough clothing. The cost of the children’s education was overwhelming, and Victoria often had to ask her classmates to borrow their textbooks and learning materials. Although this was a source of great embarrassment for the young student, Victoria remained focused and studious, and her achievements shone in the classroom. 

By God’s grace, a Chalice sponsor chose Victoria when she was in grade two. “This was a turning point in her life,” recall the Sisters who run our Mangalagiri site. Now, her family had access to enough food and clothing for their three children and could afford education costs. 

As Victoria continued to thrive in the classroom, she and her sponsor connected closely from the start of her sponsorship. Victoria loved to write to her sponsor about her life and hobbies, even well into her college years. “Growing together is a joyful experience,” observes the Sisters. “A loving bond grew between the sponsor and the child through greeting cards, letters and financial support.” 

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Photo Friday: Our top 5 “ideas for Lent” photos!

Welcome to Photo Friday! Each Friday, we share photo collections of our favourite shots from our sponsor sites around the world.

For Catholics, the holy season of Lent is upon us. We’ve collected our top 5 “ideas for Lent” photos to give you some inspiration on how to spread love, give thanks, and spend time in prayerful reflection. Plus, these hope-filled photos from our sites will give you a lovely sight to start off your 2021 Lenten season.

#5: Spend more time in prayer

Spending more time in prayer is a sure way to have a holy and blessed Lent. When one silences the mind in prayerful reflection, it’s easier to grow closer to God in heart, body, and soul. These children from our Samar site in the Philippines are taking some time before lunch to give prayers of thanksgiving to our Holy Father.
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Photo Friday: Our top 5 “hearts, hugs & kisses” photos!

Welcome to Photo Friday! Each Friday, we share photo collections of our favourite shots from our sponsor sites around the world.

It’s nearly Valentine’s Day! The origins of this special holiday known for love and affection has drawn from many influences. In the Catholic church, St. Valentine is the patron saint of love, young people, and happy marriages.

To celebrate Valentine’s Day and St. Valentine, we’re sharing our top 5 “hearts, hugs, & kisses” photos from our sites! These adorable moments between family, friends, and children at our sponsor sites are sure to warm your heart and bring a smile to your face.

#5: Big hearts 

These adorable little ones from our Chiclayo site in Peru are arranged in a very special formation to show their love for their sponsors and the support they receive from the site! They are also gathered for an exciting reason. They’ve illustrated a children’s book together, created especially for Chalice!
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Edgar’s future is bright

Edgar is a bright and enthusiastic young man sponsored through our Luis Amigo sponsor site in Guatemala. He has faced many challenges in his young life, but thanks to the support of his sponsor, he has flourished.

“The first letter I received from my sponsor filled me with much joy,” says Edgar. “Each letter is a treasure. She and her family helped me reach my goals, helped me grow and prosper.”

After finishing high school, Edgar was accepted into the business administration degree program at Galileo University. He is grateful for the continued support of his sponsor through his post secondary studies.

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Photo Friday: Our top 5 “brothers” photos!

Welcome to Photo Friday! Each Friday, we share photo collections of our favourite shots from our sponsor sites around the world.

Yesterday, February 4 was International Day of Human Fraternity, a time to celebrate and strive for the peace, harmony, and togetherness of all of mankind. In his heartfelt address via virtual event yesterday, Pope Francis expressed that despite our differences in cultures and traditions, we are all brothers and sisters, “born of the same Father.”

In honour of this special day, we’re sharing our top 5 “brothers” photos from our sites! (don’t worry- we have a collection of “sisters” photos for later, too!) May the loving and joyful bonds between these brothers from all over our diverse and beautiful world remind you that no matter our differences, we are all born of the same Father and Christ unites us as our brother.

#5: Pasqual and Ramon

Little brother Pasqual and big brother Ramon are from our Dominica site in Paraguay. Pasqual is still in elementary school, while Ramon is getting ready to graduate high school! Ramon is also budding as a soccer star. He says that training keeps him away from common “teen problems” in his area, such as underage drinking and drug use. He tries to be a role model to his younger siblings including Pasqual, and motivates them to study and pursue their dreams.
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Our top 5 “winter-themed” photos!

Welcome to Photo Friday! Each Friday, we share photo collections of our favourite shots from our sponsor sites around the world.

We’re about to head in February, and in Canada, winter weather has settled in. Cold temperatures, high winds, and snow are now frequent; but so are the cozy parts of winter, such as warm drinks, hot meals with friends or family, and cuddling up with a favourite blanket! Even though it’s not currently winter at all of our sponsor sites, we’ve compiled this collection of our top 5 “winter-themed” photos to bring you a little bit of winter cheer.

Though not all of our sponsor sites experience winter weather, some do! Northern areas of Ukraine experience even colder temperatures than Canada, and parts of Africa, Peru, and Bolivia experience chilly weather and snowfall. We’re so grateful that thanks to your support through sponsorship and gift catalogue donations, vulnerable children and families receive warm clothing and heating supplies to keep them comfortable during the winter.

#5: Winter waves! 

These little ones from our Pochaiv site in Ukraine are enjoying a schoolyard break outdoors during one particularly snowy winter! They don’t seem to mind the cold at all, thanks to their fluffy winter coats and warm winter hats. We love their enthusiasm- their teacher seems to, too!  Continue reading

Annie has a new lease on life

Annie is a hard worker. She is an attentive single mother to a teenage boy sponsored through our Serenje sponsor site in Zambia. She is also a loving sister and aunt. Last year when she was visited by a Chalice staff member, it was obvious that something was wrong. She was despondent and in a lot of pain.

Something you should know about Annie is that she suffered from polio as a child and lost the use of her legs. At the time of our staff visit, Annie’s wheelchair was in obvious disrepair. She was sitting on a plastic patio chair covered in dirty foam, which was very uncomfortable and caused sores to develop.

Annie lives with her younger sister who is also a single mother of a young boy. The four of them lived together in a small house with no inside toilet. Their pit toilet was located 100 meters from the house and Annie required someone to assist her to use it, which was especially difficult during rainy weather.

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Photo Friday: Our top 5 “cheerful” photos!

Welcome to Photo Friday! Each Friday, we share photo collections of our favourite shots from our sponsor sites around the world.

In Canada, many holiday festivities have passed and the dreariness of winter is in full swing. It’s in these times that we need to pause and reflect on our blessings, our loved ones, and the things that bring joy, happiness, and cheer to our hearts.

To help bring some light and laughter to your week, we’re sharing our top 5 “cheerful” photos from our sponsor sites! In spite of the many obstacles they face, many of the children and families we serve are filled with the light and love of Christ. We can see their deep inner joy reflected on their faces!

#5: Beaming boys 

These boys from our Mercy Care site in Kenya are eager to pose for a photo with bright, beaming smiles! You can almost hear the laughter and cheer they bring to the scene. Their school is supported by kind Chalice donors, so they receive meals and extra support to ensure that they get the most out of their education.

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Meals made with love: Maria finds fulfilment in her career

Maria, a former sponsored child from our Pochaiv site in Ukraine, is finding great joy and fulfilment in her busy profession as a cook after recently graduating from trade school!

Maria is no stranger to a busy schedule. She comes from a bustling family of five children. Every day, Maria’s father would head to work early in the morning, while her mother would stay home and care for the young children in the home. Even though Maria’s father worked full time, the family still lived in poverty due to his low income. Determined to help to the best of her ability, Maria always pitched in with the household chores. As soon as she was finished, she’d start crocheting! She would diligently knit sweaters to sell to contribute towards household bills.

One year, Maria’s mother heard of Chalice’s sponsorship program, and applied for assistance. When Maria was chosen by a sponsor, she was so happy! From then on, she was able to attend school with supplies, buy books, and attend study groups. “She grew up hardworking and persistent. She wanted to achieve a lot in life because sponsorship motivated her,” says Halyna, our Pochaiv site director.

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Photo Friday: Our top 5 “Grow Faith” photos!

Welcome to Photo Friday! Each Friday, we share photo collections of our favourite shots from our sponsor sites around the world.

Faith thrives in strong, supportive communities. We aim to encourage the faith of our Chalice family around the world, whether it be through sharing the Word of God, through prayer, by encouraging our Sisters and priests, or by giving and children and families the chance to believe in hope and the love of Jesus.

This week, we’re sharing our top 5 “Grow Faith” photos of children, families, and staff at our sites growing and sharing their faith! We are so inspired by the outpouring of resilience and hope we see from our Chalice family each day!

#5: Spread the word

In Catholic communities such as our CMAVIL site in Villeta, Paraguay, a bible is a treasured gift.  Family circles meet for passage readings and reflections to grow and share in their faith journeys. In 2018, it was our site’s goal to provide each of our sponsored families with a bible to encourage daily reading of the Word of God.

In total, 284 families from our CMAVIL site received a bible of their own. They met at the Virgen del Rosaria de Villeta Church to celebrate the occasion!
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