Beyond Sherpa Did you know that roughly 40 million people die annually from starvation, disease and malnutrition? That is the equivalent of about seven Jewish holocausts taking place every year. It is unimaginable that something this terrible can take place and even more surprising that this type of global tragedy isn’t at the front of our news every day.It’s tempting to feel like the world’s problems are too big and our impact too small so why bother. But just like the infamous Starfish poem, one small action on our part can still make an impact, even if it is just one person. Mother Teresa once said:I alone cannot change the world, but I can cast a stone across the waters to create many ripples.Because we believe that we are blessed in order that we may be a blessing to others, we choose to give to these various organizations through our finances, time and talents. (Note: Before giving to an organization, we like to check their financial health, accountability and transparency rating at https://www.charitynavigator.org/) Safe Families (olivecrest.org/safe-families/): Supports at-risk children and parents who are experiencing a short-term emergency, such as hospitalization, or a longer-term crisis, such as drug abuse. Parents experiencing a temporary crisis can arrange for their children (newborn through 18 years old) to stay with Safe Families volunteers while they address the issues that led to the instability in their lives. Volunteers open their homes to children offering a positive alternative to the state child welfare system and allowing parents to work out their problems without having to worry about losing custody of their children.We have been a Safe Families host home for 4 years and truly believe in what this organization is doing, especially in its emphasis on keeping children out ofthe welfare system. Compassion International (compassion.com): Acts as a child advocacy ministry through monthly sponsorships which help provide children with food, clothing and school tuition and continues until the child reaches the age of 18 to 22, depending on the country where the child lives. We currently have 4 children we are sponsoring in Uganda (Doreen), Haiti (Mike), Peru (Karol) and Bolivia (Belen). We enjoy writing them letters throughout the year and our kids enjoy writing to them also. Someday we hope to be able to visit one or all of them! World Vision (worldvision.org): Works with children, families and their communities worldwide to reach their full potential by tackling the causes of poverty and injustice. One way they help is by providing micro business loans to individuals for them to grow their business. As a business owner, I really like this concept and have had fun investing in a variety of small business ventures in Africa, Asia, Eastern Europe/Middle East, and Latin America. I was impressed to learn that there is a 97% loan payback rate for these loans. Food for the Hungry (fh.org): Provides life-changing resources such as clean water, medical aid, food, equal educational opportunities to girls and boys, vocational training and empowerment in the midst of unimaginable hardships. Their view of poverty is holistic and honors the people they serve by inviting them to contribute to the process. They work side-by-side with local leaders, responding to their needs with transformative solutions, which are both sustainable and implemented at the hands of the communities themselves. We have been partnering with FH for a few years by sponsoring a team from our church who goes to Guatemala each summer to help in one of the local communities. We love that this organization seeks to implement sustainable solutions at a local level where those being helped are part of the solution. Krochet Kids International (krochetkids.org): Partners with the poor and empowers people to rise above poverty. With programs in Northern Uganda and Peru, their unique model equips impoverished women with a job, education and mentorship. The hats the women crochet are each personally signed and then sold in the United States. Many of these women are then launched out into the community starting successful businesses of their own that they were able to create, develop and execute as a result of their training and education through KKP. Our friends moved from Orange County to Peru from 2011-2016 to launch KKI Peru. After 5 years, with the organization running smoothly by local community members, they were able to return to the US leaving a thriving, successful business! Show Hope (showhope.org): Mobilizes individuals and communities to meet the most pressing needs of orphans in distress by providing 1) homes for waiting children through adoption aid grants, and 2) life-saving medical care for orphans with special needs. We have many friends who have adopted through various organizations and Show Hope is one of them. Anytime we are able to provide funds for a family to adopt a child we love being a part of the process so that a child who is an orphan can have a forever home. Focus on the Family (focusonthefamily.com): Helps families and individuals to deal with issues in marriage and parenting through various resources including counseling, magazines, help line, web-site resources, books and podcasts. We have used many resources from this organization over the years as we’ve faced challenges in marriage and parenting. We still have a yearly subscription for our children to a monthly magazine of fun stories, games and crafts. Creative Kids Playhouse of Orange County (creativekidsplayhouse.com): Offers an education-based program which doesn’t focus on the overall production but rather on nurturing each individual child, no matter what their stage experience. The focus is on helping each individual child to learn and grow so they can experience the benefits and joy of performing on stage. Musical theatre helps children with reading skills, memorization skills, public speaking, music and movement, imagination and creativity, self-discipline, problem-solving, and working as a team. Our children have been performing with CKP for the past 6 years and Kristin also served as a founding member of the Board of Directors for the first 5 years of the organizations existence. Sherpa has been proud to financially sponsor this unique and educational theater program.The SFA or Sherpa Financial are not affiliated with Safe Families, Compassion International, World Vision, Food For The Family, Krochet Kids International, Show Hope, Focus On The Family, or Creative Kids Playhouse of Orange County.