When the unexpected happens, it can mean the end to a bright future for a vulnerable child living in poverty. A parent dies unexpectedly. A cyclone destroys a home. A life-threatening medical condition is diagnosed. When life is already a daily struggle to survive, the unexpected can push families past the point of desperation.
But it doesn't have to be the end for these children. When you give to the Where Most Needed fund, you’re empowering local churches around the world to provide fast, urgent support for vulnerable children. You're giving children a lifeline for a different future.
After her parents died from terminal illness, little Evaline from Kenya and her three older sisters were left with their grandmother, Stella. In her grief, she verbally and physically abused them. The young girls were deprived of food, and forced to sleep outside and drop out of school.
"I can't count the number of days and nights we stayed hungry."
Her older sisters knew Evaline needed to take special medicine every day. But as time went on, the medicine seemed to stop working. The girls grew desperate. They begged for food on the street as they watched their youngest sister get weaker and sicker by the day.
But this was not the end of their story. As a last resort, the girls fled their grandmother's house and begged their neighbour, Mueni, for help. Mueni took them to the Compassion centre at the local church. Finally, the girls had found a safe haven.
Church staff took immediate action, providing the girls with food, clothing and counselling. They entered a rescue centre for at-risk children and Evaline was registered with Compassion's Child Sponsorship Program.
"We had to defend Evaline and her sisters' rights and show the community that we will not tolerate any harm or exploitation to any child. Just as Jesus says in the Bible 'let the little children come to me', we have also welcomed the destitute and made our project a safe haven."
As part of the Child Sponsorship Program, Evaline finally had a chance to see a doctor. Her mysterious sickness was revealed: she was HIV positive.
But thanks to generous friends like you, local staff were able to respond immediately. They provided her with additional nutritional support to help her body fight the side effects of her life-saving antiretroviral medicine.
Today Evaline is six, back in school and dreaming of becoming a teacher. Through Compassion, she continues to receive ongoing financial support for her nutritional needs, clothing and living expenses to help her thrive. Best of all, she has the opportunity to hear about Jesus' love for her.
What does the Where Most Needed fund do?
Poverty leaves children without any safety net or protection, so when unforeseen circumstances arise, there is often little hope for recovery.
Through generous supporters, Compassion church partners work effectively to address the most pressing needs of children in our programs.
The Where Most Needed fund is used to meet a variety of needs that have been identified by our local church partners, from emergency disaster response to long-term health or training initiatives, and brings resources and empowerment to children in every nation we work in.
Compassion’s Where Most Needed fund is distributed between other Critical Needs and responds in circumstances where additional help for those funds is needed.
Doesn't sponsorship cover the most urgent needs of children?
The effects of poverty are devastating and affect every area of a child’s life. Compassion’s Child Sponsorship Program sets the foundation for life-changing opportunities, but every Compassion assisted child will, at some point, require care beyond sponsorship’s reach.
Critical Needs provides customised care and tailored solutions that directly address obstacles to a child’s development.
Compassion’s Where Most Needed fund is distributed to other Critical Needs in circumstances where additional help for those funds is needed. For example, Where Most Needed could be used to provide additional funding to Water and Sanitation, Disaster Relief or the Highly Vulnerable Children fund. By giving to Where Most Needed, you help Compassion to respond to the greatest need for children, families and communities with speed and flexibility.
Can I give directly to my sponsored child through the Where Most Needed fund?
While every registered child—including your sponsored child—may benefit from Where Most Needed during their time in the program, it is not possible to give directly to an individual child through this fund. Rather, your gift to the Where Most Needed fund can be distributed to other Critical Needs in circumstances where additional help for those funds is needed. By giving to Where Most Needed, you help Compassion to be prepared to help any registered child in any country—and respond to the greatest need with speed and flexibility.
How does Compassion determine the children with the most urgent needs?
Local staff know the children, their families and their communities intimately and are well placed to assess the needs of the children. The Where Most Needed fund is available for immediate use (such as a medical emergency when the staff can cover ambulance, medication, a hospital stay or other immediate health intervention) as well as for strategic interventions that might be focused on long-term outcomes for a child or group of children (such as building a desperately needed toilet block or distributing mosquito nets to combat diseases such as malaria).
While it is often very difficult to compare one child’s needs with another’s, the local staff are well placed to assess need. It is important to note that they work within an established framework, overseen by national office staff and Compassion International, to ensure transparency and accountability and make sure that children receive appropriate and timely support as they need it.
Can siblings or families benefit from the Where Most Needed fund?
Yes. Compassion recognises that a child’s holistic development depends on a stable home life and the love of at least one caregiver who is well enough to provide and care for that child. So sometimes siblings and caregivers benefit from the fund: for example, in situations where Compassion provides disaster support which benefits the whole family, or if a caregiver needs a specific medical intervention, and so on.