Give back.

Children International Nonprofit Childrens Organization

The Husband and I don’t have a lot of spare time.  I’d love to do volunteer work in my own community, but that just isn’t feasible with my schedule. 


Also — we’re not rich.  My Husband is in medical school, and we both work hard to pay the bills and afford some small luxuries.  But compared to many people in this world, we have a lot of money.   I may overdraw our bank account occasionally, but we certainly have money to give.


When I asked the Husband is we could "adopt" a child in need, he barely paused before saying, "Sure.  We’ll just eat one less meal out a month."  His willingness to give warms my heart.


Meet our sponsored child:


Debika is 3 years old and lives in India.  She lives with her parents and one sibling.  Her family survives on $38.00 a MONTH.  I picked Debika because her favorite hobby is running, and she was born on May 7, which is only 1 day before the Husband’s birthday.


For $22 a month, Debika will receive clothing, medical care, and assistance with her education.  We probably won’t even notice the $22 is missing from our bank account.


If you want to sponsor a child, visit Children International.


How do you give back?



  • brandi August 21, 2009, 9:15 am

    This is awesome Caitlin – that's so great that you guys are giving back!

    We send money every month to the clinic and orphanage we visited earlier this summer in Honduras, and make trips there whenever we can. That doesn't happen often since the trips are expensive – but it's worth it. And we're in the same boat as you two! I work FT and husband is finishing up school and working grad student jobs which don't pay much at all. It's tough some months, but it's still easier for us to give to those that we know have less than we do already.

  • Sunshine WVU August 21, 2009, 9:15 am

    Very inspiring! I give back with random acs of kindness I spread all over my university's campus. It's a great way to anonymously brighten someone's day. I would love to sponsor a child as well. What a great idea!

  • fitforfree August 21, 2009, 9:19 am

    That's awesome Caitlin. Could you speak a little bit about the organization — how much of the $ actually makes it to the child, how much contact do you have with him, etc.? Just curious, because I've always wanted to do something like this, but I've never been sure which organizations I could trust!

    I give back by mentoring this incredibly smart girl who lives in a really rough neighborhood — we do a writing program together and I'm helping her with her first book (she's 16 . . .)

  • emilyrena August 21, 2009, 9:21 am

    That is great! If only everyone was so willing to give to help others.

  • cindy.j August 21, 2009, 9:21 am

    Great job Caitlin! I've had a sponsored child through Children International for about ten years, onto my second child. You'll love it when you actually receive a letter from your child. Enjoy!

  • Pam (Highway to Health) August 21, 2009, 9:21 am

    That is awesome! I need to find more time to give back. I recently started volunteering for a children's charity helping to raise money at different fundraisers but I should do it more often!

  • Caitlin at Healthy Tipping Point August 21, 2009, 9:23 am

    fit for free – im not sure about the % of the donation that actually goes to the child. you can check out the organization's website for more info. also, the kid apparently sends you a card, which im excited for 🙂

  • Lianna August 21, 2009, 9:23 am

    How wonderful that you're sponsoring a child!

    I'll admit, I didn't start giving back till very recently. I just thought we couldn't afford it.

    However, a couple of weeks ago, I went to Wal-mart and found some toys for my kids. As I walked by the school supplies on my way to pay, I realized that my kids didn't NEED more toys, they have so much and I thought about the kids who were going to school and don't even have new notebooks or pens or crayons, etc. So I put the toys back (thank goodness my kids were at home, they would have thrown fits!) and spent that money on school supplies and then donated them.

    With all the great sales for school supplies, every trip to the grocery store, I spend a few dollars (which goes very far!) on school supplies, have them bagged separately and on the way out, I drop them off at the Supply Our Students (S.O.S.) bin.

    Moral of the story, you don't have to be rich to give back and just a few dollars can make a big impact!

  • Erin August 21, 2009, 9:24 am

    You have inspired me to sponsor a child as well! I went to the website and found a little girl from the Philippines that I'm going to sponsor. THANK YOU!

  • Caitlin at Healthy Tipping Point August 21, 2009, 9:25 am

    lianna – i love the story about the school supplies – way to make a BIG difference!!!

    erin – YAY im so happy!!

  • Ari August 21, 2009, 9:26 am

    A great site to check out charities – and find out how much of your money actually goes to the cause – is Just make sure you're comparing apples to apples when it comes to program expenses. Some charities, by definition, have more administrative overhead than others.
    It's also a good idea to check the CEO's salary, which is a good indicator of how the organization is spending your money.

  • Brown Town August 21, 2009, 9:27 am

    Very awesome, Caitlin!

    I sponsor a child through WorldVision – his name is Ghelen. I chose him because he has the same birthday as my little sister. (: It is such an awesome and fulfilling experience.

    I love sending him packages and pictures to color and it is SO COOL getting mail from Africa!

  • Katy August 21, 2009, 9:29 am

    When I was 15 I started sponsoring a girl in Guatemala name Elsa. She was 5 when I started sponsoring her and she is almost 13 now. I have seen her grow in pictures and have received many letters from her. It's crazy how just one meal to us is enough to provide so much for a family each month.

  • Mean (southerngracesblog) August 21, 2009, 9:30 am

    Caitlin, that is so beautiful that y'all are doing this for this little girl. What a blessing to be able to give back in this way 🙂
    Enjoy your Friday, love!

  • Brown Town August 21, 2009, 9:31 am

    hahahaha. ps – i was trying to come up with a blog name and my boyfriend said i should make one called brown town. i totally didn't realize that i actually made an account. woops! just didn't want you to think i'm a super weirdo who calls myself browntown.

  • lindenclaire August 21, 2009, 9:31 am

    How awesome! I sponsor a child through World Vision, and she is such a cutie! Thanks for making my day a little bit brighter 🙂

  • Emily August 21, 2009, 9:35 am

    This is great Caitlin! I liked the husbands response. What he says is so true.
    Currently I am the happy adopter of a manatee (who lives in your state!) I like the idea of what you've done though, and will look into that as another way to give back too.
    Have a great weekend,

  • teacherwoman August 21, 2009, 9:39 am

    That is absolutely wonderful!

    I have done a lot of donating to Cystic Fibrosis in the past. I took part in a charity walk with a team of teachers a few years back and were able to raise a lot of money as well. I think that every little counts.

    I am always one willing to donate to a good cause, here and there, if it is feasable. Even $5 counts, and to me, it's one less coffee or meal out with the friends, like your hubby said. And I can most definitely justify that for the causes!

  • Dori August 21, 2009, 9:40 am

    My mom bought a goat for a poor family after seeing a commercial about it. She called me and said, "I bought a goat!"

    I love that she did something you don't hear about often. And I think it is wonderful that you are helping this girl.

  • Courtney W. August 21, 2009, 9:49 am

    Once again, you are an amazing example of what living a healthy, wholesome life is all about – giving BACK! This is so awesome. I have to check this out!


  • Julie August 21, 2009, 9:51 am

    Oh wow, you are one of a kind Caitlin! You are so lucky to have such an awesome husband to want to do this with you. You are great people.

  • Rosey Rebecca August 21, 2009, 9:58 am

    You ae so amazing, Caitlin! It doesn't surprise me that you would do something like this!

  • Bec August 21, 2009, 9:59 am

    wow what a great idea! Even as a student I need way more $$$ then that to survive in a week

  • Valerie August 21, 2009, 10:08 am

    This is so great, Caitlin! You definitely won't miss that money, yet you are making such a big impact on a child's life, not to mention her family's! As a college student, I am obviously on a tight budget as well. To give back, I am a mentor for the Big Brothers, Big Sisters organization. Once a week I visit my "little sister" at her school and we spend about an hour together over her lunch. It's such a simple task and takes barely any time out of my day, but it really means a lot to her. I love really being able to see the changes I have brought out in her, it really touches my heart!

  • Nina August 21, 2009, 10:09 am

    you never cease to amaze me. truly, you are just such an inspiration. love it.

  • Bridget August 21, 2009, 10:10 am


    I just got back from India, where I visited an orphanage for kids that were previously forced to work as laborers in a stone quarry. We also built houses for two families that work in the quarry. So, Debika definitely strikes a chord in my heart, too. Way to go!

  • Nicole ( August 21, 2009, 10:28 am

    That is so very kind of you!

    I'm actually working on starting a non-profit organization to give abused and unwanted animals a safe place to live and find good homes. It's still in the beginning stages, but it's getting there!

  • Brie August 21, 2009, 10:28 am

    We don't have much money, either, but we both donate blood and platelets regularly. We have plenty of that to spare! We also volunteer at an animal shelter giving lots of love to abandoned dogs and cats and rabbits, and have two shelter-adopted cats of our own (and probably a dog soon).

  • Amanda August 21, 2009, 10:32 am

    Caitlin, both your husband and your generosity is really inspiring!

    I am walking in the Breast Cancer 3-Day in Philadelphia in October and am working towards raising at least $2300 for the cause. Also, I just participated in a Community Service day through work yesterday where we completely cleaned up a park in Philly .. such a great feeling to be able to help!

  • Meg August 21, 2009, 10:35 am

    That's awesome! Children are such blessings, and deserve nothing but happiness.

  • Lizzy August 21, 2009, 10:36 am

    That is the best thing ever! Congrats Caitlin!! how exciting.

  • Shauna August 21, 2009, 10:39 am

    You are a really good person. I'm liking this TINDMO series 🙂

  • Jenn Eats Nutritiously Now August 21, 2009, 10:53 am

    That is awesome, Caitlin.

    We give through our church mostly.

  • Molly August 21, 2009, 11:19 am

    you inspire me!

  • Meredith August 21, 2009, 11:19 am

    I used to have a tanning membership that cost $25 a month. I felt really guilty about it because 1) tanning is bad for you 2) I don't want cancer or wrinkly skin 3) its a waste of money!

    So I quit and then since that $25 had automatically been subtracted from my account for the past 3 years (yikes!) I decided I wouldn't even miss it. Now I give $25 a month to a charity. I either donate to friends raising money for things like Team in Training or Breast Cancer Walk, or to a local food bank that I know desperately needs more food.

    I feel so much better about myself for quitting tanning and for using the money for something better!

  • lmoran823 August 21, 2009, 11:29 am

    Caitlin, my hubby and I have an "Adopted" child through Children International, too! His name is Yueri, he's seven and he lives in the Dominican Republic. We always get funny letters and drawings from him. So adorable! We also make donations often to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. The hubby lost his mom when he was five to leukemia, so that one's very near and dear to him.

  • Amanda (Two Boos Who Eat) August 21, 2009, 11:34 am

    That is great Caitlin! How fun!

    I am going to start volunteering at a local Boys & Girls club in a couple of weeks. 🙂

  • Kath August 21, 2009, 11:35 am

    What a nice idea!

  • megan August 21, 2009, 12:04 pm

    That's awesome. 🙂 We sponsor a child through gospel for asia (100% of the money goes to child/family). I love it. We also help out through our church outreach programs.

  • Jolene - EverydayFoodie August 21, 2009, 2:04 pm

    That is wonderful Caitlin! I am going to talk to my husband about doing this as well.

  • Jenny August 21, 2009, 3:15 pm

    i am floored by you and the hubs kindess and generosity. You are a special soul Caitlin and truly make the world a better place <3

  • Oh She Glows August 21, 2009, 3:27 pm

    oh my gosh im such a sap…the pic of your child bought a tear to my eye. That is seriously so cool of you both.
    I give back to the cancer society whenever I can. I like to think that what little bit I can give will help!

  • Laura August 21, 2009, 4:47 pm

    I was giving back by sponsoring two children through World Vision. Unfortunately, I had to stop because we had just moved to CA, then my boyfriend and I had both lost our jobs. Needless to say we had no money. Eight months later we are just now getting back on our feet.

    Hopefully I will be able to sponsor my children again when we become steady. I would love to go and visit them (which is possible with an organization like World Vision)! My little girl lives in Africa and my little boy lives in Jerusalem. I've written them a few letters but it would be so awesome to see them in person.

  • Jenna August 21, 2009, 5:13 pm

    aww that is so nice of you and your husband!

  • biggirleats August 21, 2009, 5:15 pm

    This is fabulous Caitlin!

    I like to consider my full time job my way of giving back. I work as a community service-learning coordinator at a University in Rhode Island. Essentially, it's my job to pair organizations who come to us with student volunteers and work with faculty and staff to promote and encourage volunteer service among our students. Last year, our university community donated over 69,000 hours of service! Prior to this work, I was in an AmeriCorps program (sometimes called the "domestic Peace Corps") so service is something I deeply believe in!

    I fully support this TINTDMO!! Way to go! 🙂

  • Jocelyn August 21, 2009, 11:54 pm

    I sponser a child named Alison from Ecuador… I knew the minute I saw her picture that she was the girl for me 🙂 She is only 4 years old..and within only 4 months of sponsering her..I have recieved two letters from her family! Including one with alison's hand traced on it…ah it warms my heart! <3

  • Jocelyn August 21, 2009, 11:54 pm

    And I sponser through world of the best go give through. Alot of the times with certain sponser programs not all of the money goes to the child

  • Madelin August 22, 2009, 4:36 am

    My boyfriend and I both sponser children in Sri Lanka through World Vision :). That rice looks interesting!

  • PachydermParty August 22, 2009, 9:28 pm

    That's wonderful Caitlin!

    I just adopted a child myself from south africa and I have a photo of her on my shelf to remind me what is important. I gave up buying iced coffee and lattes to adopt her. Such a small change in daily routine really is changing her life so glad I did it.

  • Niki Jackson (The Vintage Artist) August 24, 2009, 4:13 am

    Thanks so much for sharing this Caitlin, I have now set up to sponsor a child through this site and another from a UK childrens sponorship charity. Thanks for making us aware so we too can help xxx

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