How One Extraordinary Boy in the Philippines Found a Holt Sponsor

Danilos stands on a street near his home in the Philippines.

We just have to tell you about Danilo.

Danilo is 9. He lives with his family in the Philippines and he’s in the fifth grade at school. Two years ago, Danilo heard about Holt’s child sponsorship program from a kid who lived next door to him. His neighbor told him that he has a sponsor in the U.S. who helps him go to school by providing school supplies, lunch money and uniforms.

Danilo couldn’t believe it!

His parents also had trouble covering the cost of his supplies, books, uniforms and school lunches. Some days, he even went without lunch. Continue reading “How One Extraordinary Boy in the Philippines Found a Holt Sponsor”

David Archuleta Visits Holt’s Programs

David Archuleta with a sponsored child.David Archuleta travels to the Philippines to meet children and families in sponsorship.

“It blew my mind to see homeless children on the street,” music artist David Archuleta says, still struck a year later. “Kids sleeping in cardboard on the side of the road…”

Though he knew about the difficulties children and families face in urban Manila, Philippines, it shocked him to see this level of poverty first-hand.

Continue reading “David Archuleta Visits Holt’s Programs”

When Hope Was Gone

At 7, Evans’ life took a horrible turn. At 16, sponsors and donors gave Evans the chance to dream about a future she never thought possible.

Evans poses in pictures with her students, each holding an award for their accomplishments in her class. One at a time, she hands them their award, smiles, and gives them a quick hug or makes a funny face while the camera snaps a picture. Evans loves her students.

She believes wholeheartedly that each of the kids in her class is special — and that education can help them reach their dreams.

She knows this is true because education also changed her life.


Continue reading “When Hope Was Gone”

The Story of My Life

Through the Independent Living and Educational Assistance Program in the Philippines, young adults aging out of institutional care gain the skills to live successfully on their own. Marlon Cruz was once an ILEA scholar. This is the story of his life, as told by Marlon. 

I was 5 years old when I got lost in the market of Marikina City and never found my parents again. That was the start of my struggles in life. I did not know where I would stay and how I would eat. I came to the point that I was sleeping anywhere I could. To survive, I started to carry baskets and bags of goods for people in the marketplace so I could get money for food. When authorities learned that I had no parents, they put me in an orphanage and they started to look for my parents.

But nobody was found and nobody came back to claim me.

The barangay authorities sent me to Boys Town Complex in Markina City, an institution for children without parents. I was admitted in Mahay, a section in the institution where children like me are housed. I had mixed feelings, happy but sad. Happy because there were people who would care for me and there was food, so I did not have to wonder how I would find food to eat. Happy that I would not experience again what I had been through, I experienced playing again. I focused my attention on playing to avoid thinking of my lost parents and continuing to wonder why I no longer have parents. Continue reading “The Story of My Life”