Helping Needy Disciples This Christmas

African Children in orangeAfrican School Kids need help with fees. This Christmas, you can make a gift that will literally change a life. Here are two excellent ideas from IcocHotNews…

Africa

“Chance for Africa” is a program to help the children of African disciples so that they can go to school. African schools are not free. Most children must pay fees. Many of the poorer disciples struggle to pay these fees. In Africa, finishing High School can mean the difference between success and desperate poverty. “Chance for Africa” allows you to pay the school fees for the child of African disciples, and change the course of his or her future.

How does it work? The program is organized by the San Antonio ICOC, and all gifts are tax deductible. When you contact us here in San Antonio, you choose an African school child (whose parents are disciples), whose expenses you pay for the upcoming calendar year 2008. We send you a photo and short bio of the child. We will even help you to exchange letters and pictures with the family.

How much does it cost? That depends on the cost of the school. Younger kids might only need $75. Older kids might need $600 for the year. You choose who you will help. All gifts are welcome.

How were the kids chosen? The local African churches each formed a committee and chose the children who would be eligible for assistance.

Can a Bible Talk pool its resources and sponsor a child? Certainly! If you send us four checks to pay the school fees for one child, that is no problem. Many of our donors are teaming up with others to support a child.

Can I sponsor more than one child? You can sponsor as many kids as you would like! Friends, companies, and churches can contribute.

Where does the money go? You mail us your check made out to “Chance for Africa.” The money is wired from San Antonio to the Africa Mission account of the African churches, who in turn wires the funds directly to the church where the family attends. The money is then taken directly to the local school by the local church deacons in charge. (We do not wire money directly to Africa because of complications from the Patriot Act. It is much simpler for us to wire the money to the African Mission account in the USA, an account held by the African churches).

What percentage of my gift reaches the school in Africa? Roughly 97%. We do not charge any administration fees. In fact, the folks who administer the money in San Antonio do so on a volunteer basis. We’re a small operation. The same is true in Africa. Note…anytime you change money from one currency to another, and wire it bank to bank, there are fees. These fees are minimal. They are the only fees deducted from your gift.

Who administers the program? The Board of the San Antonio Int’l Church of Christ administers the program. Our financial administrator, Trudy Mencke, is a CPA and does the accounting. Carl De Aquino and myself volunteer time to help organize and link up the donors with the school kids.

When does school start? The school year begins in mid January. If you wish to help a child for the 2008 school year, there is still plenty of time.

How many kids are you helping currently? Disciples in San Antonio have sponsored about 50 children so far for 2008. (Disciples from other cities have also sponsored four or five others). We have many more applicants still needing help.

Do you have a website? Not yet. We are just getting started. We will be ramping up the site in the next few weeks.

What is my next step? If you would like to help a child, then send an email to Carl De Aquino here in San Antonio at theaquino@prodigy.net. Send him your name and phone number. He will gladly contact you. Or call Trudy Mencke at 210 867-6423. She will be happy to help.

Can I send you my check and you pick a child for me? Sure! Send a check to “Chance for Africa”

PO Box 47789

San Antonio, Texas, 78265.

We will choose a child and send you his bio and picture. Make sure you include a stamped return envelope for us please.

We hope that you will be a part of changing the destiny of a young student in Africa. Wonderful disciples are struggling in the poorest nations on earth to educate their children. Together we can all make a huge difference.

www.icochotnews.com

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