December 26, 2022 | Child Sponsorship

Top 5 Stories of 2022

Staff return to travel, alumni give back, mothers create change, donors help with housing, Unbound gets top ratings

By Loretta Kline

Changemakers come from all walks of life.

In Unbound, they’re students, mothers, fathers and elders. They’re volunteers and staff who’ve made ending global poverty their life’s work.

They’re people who’ve chosen to sponsor a child across the world or donate to a special fund to support families as they forge their paths out of poverty.

In 2022, Unbound published 50 stories that highlight the impact these changemakers had around the world. Here are five of those stories.

1. Venturing Forth Again

After being grounded by the COVID-19 pandemic, Unbound staff got back on the road visiting families in their homes and communities — showing why listening and personal attention matter face to face, in addition to staying connected through digital means.

Read "Venturing Forth Again."


Visiting Unbound staff members enjoy a moment with Dilcia, center, grandmother of sponsored child Raul in the Dominican Republic. At left is Oscar Tuch, regional reporter in Guatemala, and at right is Danika Wolf, multimedia editor in Kansas City.

2. Creating Helping Hearts

Alumni of the Unbound Scholarship Program are choosing careers in service to others, essentially “paying it forward” to help families in their communities achieve their dreams of a life free from poverty.

Read "Creating Helping Hearts." 

In the Philippines, sponsored youth and scholarship recipient Mae helps with the process of collecting annual photos of hundreds of sponsored individuals at an office of the Quezon program.

Rogelio De Vera Jr., head of the correspondence department and scholarship coordinator for Unbound’s Quezon program in the Philippines, works from his desk in the Quezon office. De Vera has worked with Unbound for over 20 years and has seen scholars seek careers in such areas as humanitarian activities, social development, education and counseling, to name a few.

3. The Power of Change

Study finds Unbound’s Agents of Change platform empowers women and mothers in poverty to be a force for positive, lasting change in their communities.

Read "The Power of Change." 

In a refugee camp in Trichy, India, Kowsalya, mother of sponsored child Kabilan, fills her pot with clean water from the community’s water storage tank. The tank was installed by Kowsalya’s mothers group through an Agents of Change grant. Before, water was scarce in the community of almost 300 families and only available for an hour each day. With the water tank, all families now have equal access to water anytime they need it.

Elena, mother of sponsored youth Diego, was appointed committee president of her mothers group’s Agents of Change committee in Santiago Atitlan, Guatemala, where the group took on an initiative to improve bathrooms at a local school. Elena learned how to obtain price quotes for materials, work with school leaders and oversee construction. With confidence gained from her mothers group, Elena began studying to be a nurse, a childhood dream of hers.

4. A Place They Call Home

Contributions from sponsors and other donors to Unbound’s Critical Needs Fund help make achieving the goal of a safe, secure and dignified home a reality for families around the world.

Read "A Place They Call Home." 

A home built for 84-year-old sponsored elder Esther in Nairobi, Kenya, is made of wood and iron sheets, is structurally sound and keeps the cold air out, protecting Esther and her elderly husband and their grandchildren from illness. Esther’s old homestead was falling in. Termites had damaged the wood, leaving the family fearful that the next rain would cause the structure to collapse.

Esther claps and smiles when asked about her new home, invites visitors in for tea and talks about how happy her home makes her.

5. Top-Rated Charity

Unbound receives top ratings from charity evaluators, indicating accountability, transparency and trustworthiness in financial management and other critical areas.

Read "Top-Rated Charity."


Photo 1: Unbound earns the highest four-star rating from Charity Navigator. The rating encompasses the areas of accountability and finance, culture and community, and leadership and adaptability.

Photo 2: Unbound meets all 20 rigorous standards of the BBB Wise Giving Alliance. The accreditation covers four areas of charity accountability: governance, results reporting, finances, and truthful, transparent communications.