Frequently Asked Questions about Child Foundation



 
A message from the Child Foundation Team  

Greetings. We fully understand the trust you place in Child Foundation as an ethical, impactful nonprofit, nonpolitical and nonreligious agency in our mission of helping children from poor families access and succeed in education for a better future. We are fully compliant with laws in our humanitarian support to sanctioned countries, including Iran, with the use of general licenses and a specific license from the U.S. Government. Below, you will find information about how we help children with the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs). Please do not hesitate to contact us directly at [email protected], if you want to learn more about us and how to further help children achieve safe, healthy, and fulfilling lives.


Thank you, and Best Wishes, 
The Child Foundation Team 
 

 General FAQs About Child Foundation
 Who is the Child Foundation, and where do you work?

Established in 1994, Child Foundation is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization headquartered in the state of Oregon. Child Foundation is currently supporting children in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan, Cambodia, Indonesia, Nepal, and the United States. Child Foundation is a nonpolitical, nonreligious agency that does not provide resources or support any government. All of Child Foundation’s resources support humanitarian purposes.

What is the Child Foundation’s mission and purpose?

Our mission and purpose as a public charity is to support underprivileged children succeed in education and achieve safe, healthy, and fulfilling lives. Child Foundation supports children and their respective households to overcome the burdens of poverty and other challenges.

 Who runs Child Foundation?

Child Foundation is supervised by a Board of Directors,  who are all serving as volunteers. Their names and information can be found  here, after our staff listing .

Our partners in other countries are completely separate organizations from Child Foundation, registered in their own countries. Child Foundation has an arm’s length relationship with them, we do not have the same staff or individuals on Board or Trustee bodies governing the organizations. All of Child Foundation's partners are nonprofit agencies.

Does Child Foundation have the necessary licenses and have permission to support programs in sanctioned countries such as Iran and Afghanistan?

 Yes. Child Foundation programs are in full compliance with U.S. Government sanctions law. In Iran and Afghanistan, for example, there are general licenses that entities can use for humanitarian purpose that do not need specific permission. However, for some support, a specific license is required.
Child Foundation has a specific license from the Office of Foreign Asset Control (OFAC) of the U.S. Department of Treasury to provide humanitarian support to underprivileged children in its child sponsorship program. The latest such license is valid through January 31, 2025. 
Child Foundation utilizes OFAC General Licenses E and G allowing us to raise and send funds for humanitarian efforts, including support to relieve suffering from earthquakes, floods, COVID and other crises; and to increase access to education for nonprofit purposes. Examples of support for increasing educational access to disadvantaged Iranian students includes laptops, tablets, internet access, backpacks, and other school supplies to increase access to education of disadvantaged Iranian students.
Imported food to Iran for humanitarian purposes is not subject to sanctions, and we apply for this support in our Iranian cosponsorship program (see below). The food is combined with cash stipends for students from sponsors within Iran, and with cash stipends from the U.S. for most students through our OFAC specific license. With the combined support from within Iran, we call this our "cosponsorship program." 

How do you ensure the funds you receive are spent as your sponsors intend? 

Child Foundation has an experienced accounting staff and a credentialled controller to ensure funds are spent in accordance with regulations, our donors’ intentions and nonprofit best practices. We voluntarily perform an annual independent audit  that complies with Internal Revenue Service’s regulations. Full financial statements are available on our website. Child Foundation has tracking processes tracing resources directly to children and households and has an annual on-the-ground program assessment/audit to confirm humanitarian support gets to the intended beneficiaries. 

How can I evaluate Child Foundation's financials, tax forms, and operations? 

There are many ways that you can check Child Foundation's financial history and operations. As a public charity, we are registered with the following organizations. You can check their website to see how they've rated us.

Charity Navigator: America's premier charity evaluator has given Child Foundation their highest rating (Four Stars).

GuideStar: The national database of nonprofit organizations operating in the U.S. has given Child Foundation its gold rating (Gold Status).

Independent Charities of America: ICA has provided Child Foundation with their highest seal of approval (Best). Out of over a million charities in America, fewer than 2,500 have been awarded this seal, and Child Foundation is one of them. 

Child Foundation's programs have been endorsed by the United Nations and we are currently registered with the Department of Public Information Non-governmental Organizations (DPI.NGO).

Child Foundation's annual and fiscal reports are always available to the general public. You can read our annual reports  here  and view our financial reports (done by an independent auditor) and our tax returns here  .

W hat is the sponsorship program?

Our Sponsorship Program across all countries provides ongoing economic stability and counseling for children in need, enabling them to remain in school. Sponsorship creates a unique relationship between an individual donor and a sponsored child. By pairing up a child with a sponsor, this child is able to obtain the necessary relief that they need. Generally, children sponsored through Child Foundation's programs are often supported for their entire academic careers. For some children, this is until high school, for others, it may include college.  Sponsor a child now!

Have you been audited by any US government agencies?

Yes, the IRS has conducted two full audits. In 2012 the audit committee of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) examined all of Child Foundation's accounts for the previous five years and concluded that all income, expenses, and credits had been reported accurately. The IRS letter verified Child Foundation can continue to qualify for exemption from Federal Income Tax and hold its nonprofit 501(c)(3) status. 


Additionally, a thirteen-month IRS audit came to a close on May 1, 2020. The IRS examined two years' worth of documentation, including all governing instruments, contracts, licenses, board and committee meeting minutes, and accounting and financial statements. Specifically, the IRS auditor examined:

  • Every wire transfer sent by Child Foundation over the prior two years, including those sent to Afghanistan and Iran. 
  • Each memorandum of understanding (MOU) sets out how Child Foundation works with partners.
  • Each key employee has transparent reasonable wages. 
  • All donations are being applied to the intended campaign or child with only reasonable and reported overhead cost reductions.
  • The criteria for selecting children eligible for programs and how needs are assessed. The internal auditing process were reviewed, verifying children receive resources and use them to support their education.
  • Our independent audits and related records. 


Child Foundation received a flawless finding from IRS with no changes to our status as a non-profit, tax-exempt organization. The successful audit was no surprise to Child Foundation. We are proud to be a top-rated and transparent organization that puts the welfare of children at the center of all we do.


Working internationally requires careful financial safeguards. Be assured, Child Foundation has never taken or distributed donor resources for personal gain, is in compliance with regulations pertaining to foreign corrupt practices and OFAC sanctions regulations, and has never laundered money to foreign governments, religious or political entities. 

What % of my donation to a Child Foundations program goes to families in need?

 100% of every sponsorship payment goes to services and support to the sponsored children you help. This means there is no overhead amount removed from your sponsorship payments.


Other donations go for the specific purpose to which the gift is intended, and undesignated donations go to our most urgent program and other vital agency needs.


Child Foundation has one of the lowest overhead costs for a child welfare agency working internationally, meaning the amount of donor resources that goes for services and support to children, is comparatively very high. Charity Navigator monitors this, please see here. We invite you to also check the program support/overhead rates of other child welfare charities.

How does Child Foundation send my contribution to my sponsored child?

All children selected for sponsorship support are from poor families, often living in a female headed household, where the primary breadwinner, such as a father is absent. All students must demonstrate motivation and success in their studies to keep receiving sponsorship support. All the students and households receive counselling support from a social worker, para-social worker or educational counsellor.


Child Foundation facilitates connections between sponsors and children when requested, and also visitations if and when a sponsor visits the country where the child resides. This is a supervised procedure by social service worker to protect both children and families. It is considered the best practice in global child welfare programs.


Afghanistan, Indonesia and Nepal Sponsorship Programs  
Your donation is sent to the child or children you are sponsoring in the form of a financial stipend. The stipend supports the child's education by helping with their school-related costs and other basic needs expenses so they can focus on learning.


Cambodia and Tajikistan Sponsorship Program  
Your donated dollars are sent to the sponsored child's education program as tuition so that the child receives lessons or extra-curricular and tutoring support to excel in school.


Iran Cosponsorship Program 
Your donated dollars purchase and distribute food packages and cash through the OFAC, specific lincense for students and their family. The food is imported into Iran, adhering to US sanctions that do not require a license to send food. We prioritize non-perishable and culturally typical foods like rice, lentils, beans, chickpeas and soy. Sponsors in Iran provide cash stipends. 

 Is my gift tax deductible?

Yes. All financial contributions made to Child Foundation are deductible from taxable income in the US. Every January, Child Foundation sends an official statement to its donors that reflects all of their donations from the previous year. Our tax ID number is 93-1148608.

How can a corporate matching gift program help my child?

Many sponsors participate in their company's Matching Gift Program. Matching Gift Programs enable employers to double, triple, and sometimes quadruple their employee's charitable contributions. Simply contact your human resources department and ask if your company has a Matching Gift Program for public charities. For further information on Company Matching click in here

Does Child Foundation provide humanitarian aid to help children in need?

Although Child Foundation's main goal is to help children stay in school, we provide humanitarian aid to help children and their families when there is an urgent need. Child Foundation has been very active when deadly earthquakes hit Iran, Afghanistan, Haiti, Japan, Pakistan, and Turkey and collected in-kind and cash donations to help rebuild the countries. We also respond with aid during the COVID crisis. Our Afghanistan office regularly organizes blood drives to help children with thalassemia and provides free blood transfusions.

How can I help? 

There are many ways that you can help Child Foundation assist children in need. 


Sponsor a child : Go to our sponsor page and choose one or more children to help.


Donate : You can visit our donation page and choose any of our humanitarian projects in which you are interested and help launch or continue that program through your generosity.


Volunteer : Please complete our volunteer application, and we will contact you to see how we can work together to help children in need.


Spread the Word : Talk to your friends and family about Child Foundation's humanitarian activities and share your own experience with them. If you need copies of our brochures, annual report, lists of our children waiting to be sponsored, or anything else, please contact us and we will send them to you.


Follow us : We are on Facebook , Twitter , LinkedIn , Instagram  and YouTube  You can follow us on our social media outlets or just send us your e-mail and we will send you our bi-monthly newsletter. 

Iran Cosponsorship Program FAQ
How will the program work?

 
 


Our goal is two cosponsors for each child in Iran to ensure a stable system of support that is more independent of government turbulence. One sponsor, through our Iran partner, provides a stipend from inside Iran or another country unencumbered by U.S. sanctions on Iran. You can be or are already the second cosponsor who, through Child Foundation, provides food and, for most children, a cash stipend, and possibly educational supplies if your sponsorship giving went above and beyond the child's food needs. Your monthly support fills your sponsored child's Child Foundation-issued student food card each month. This card is functionally a grocery store gift card used to claim the food imported for that child.


The food is imported to Iran and distributed throughout Iran via a large, independent chain grocery store. This means, each month, families can collect the food at their convenience and with complete dignity. Importantly, the sponsored child and family also receive counseling from a social worker.


This sponsorship program genuinely benefits children and their households, operates efficiently and withstands political turbulence, and abides by regulations in countries - both those where the support originates such as the U.S. and in Iran where support is received.

What if I want to give my sponsored child a birthday or holiday gift?

We love it when our sponsors show extra generosity for a child. This is possible and your request will be assessed by a social worker to ensure it contributes to the child’s wellbeing consistent with OFAC licensing requirements. You can make a request for this through our Customer Service department at [email protected].     

Why food packages? What’s the impact?

Reports from our Iran partner office indicate food insecurity is an even more urgent need now for low-income families.   Imported food for humanitarian purposes is not sanctioned by the U.S. Government. Grocery costs are a significant burden for the households of our sponsored students. Food insecurity is a significant need for low-income families in Iran. All studies show food assistance for such families improves performance in school. Hungry students struggle in learning. Additionally, the support is generally conditional on students remaining in and doing well in school.       

Why sponsor a child now?

We have hundreds of children today who want to learn and qualify for cosponsorship. Their households significant basic needs. Sponsoring a child today gets food, cash and counselling on the way to disadvantaged students and their households.

Why has monthly sponsorship for children in Iran increased to $40?

That's a great question! Based on the assessment of our partners', the families' basic needs are much greater than support provided in the previous $20 sponsorship. Multiple economic factors in Iran have led to food and other cost of living surges. Families struggle in the sluggish economy with high un- and under-employment. These factors increase our children's risk of skipping meals or dropping out of school. The $40 monthly support will substantially increase the basic needs support children and their families receive and have greater impact on their wellbeing.


Please also note that no overhead cost is deducted from sponsorship payments. Every dime you give your sponsored children goes to support them in the program they are enrolled in.

How can I verify my child gets their food package?

Our Iran partner will issue your sponsored child’s student food card and fill it each month with credit for the food Child Foundation imported. The third party grocery store will report the food claimed to our Iran office to ensure that families struggling with the process get support. We smartly designed, flexible and efficient system.

Social workers regularly contact the children and want to ensure each family gets the food it needs.

Further, sponsors are welcome to reach out to their sponsored children by letter. Video and phone chats will be available again after the pandemic and current crisis subsides.

What will be in the packages?

The food imported and package composition may differ from month to month. We have been successfully delivering a diversity of durable foods to families such as beans, lentils, rice, chickpeas, and soy.

Why is Child Foundation’s Iran program different from Child Foundation’s other programs?

U.S. sanctions on Iran are among the strictest in the world. To sponsor Iranian children within these restrictions, we are now importing food into the country with child sponsorship support to help thousands of students in our program to stay and succeed in school.

This food is combined with an OFAC-compliant cash stipend from the sponsorship donation for most Iranian children, as well as support from our nonprofit partners in Iran who provides these services to children. . 

We also can send educational funds for our partners in Iran to purchase school supplies and services like laptops, tablets, internet access, books, other critical support for our students.

Our other programs do not have the same sanction limitations, and, as a result, we can support children differently in countries like Afghanistan, Cambodia, Nepal, Indonesia, and Tajikistan.

How is this program compliant with US sanctions?

Child Foundation takes U.S. laws and regulations seriously. Our cosponsorship program, with its food, cash and educational supplies support to sponsored children's families, is in full compliance with U.S. general and specific license requirement for Iran.  

Can Child Foundation send cash to Iran as emergency aid?

Yes, Child Foundation can utilize both an OFAC specific license and general licenses to raise and send funds for humanitarian and disaster relief efforts. We send aid after earthquakes, flooding and during the COVID and other crises. Please check our donor website here to see emergencies we are responding to.

Who can I contact for more information?

You are welcome to contact our office by email at [email protected] and by phone at (503)224-0409. We would appreciate a personal conversation with you about any of these or other details.

Afghanistan
What is happening in Afghanistan? 

After a period in instability with the change in governments, Child Foundation’s Afghanistan program is back on track. There are many students, mostly girls, who need sponsors. Child Foundation also provides emergency food and other basic needs assistance and supports a life-saving Thalassemia Clinic for children with this serious blood disorder. 

Can I contact my sponsored child about their needs? 

Our team on the ground has been cautious and systematic about contacting families; as a result, contact is slow and limited. If you are interested in making contact please let us know and we will work to try and arrange this.  

How is Afghan Crisis Fund be used?   

Our priority is to apply these funds to the needs of vulnerable Afghans, including the nearly 1000 families we have been working with. We know that food and safe shelter are vital, but to maximize our impact, we continue to assess needs as matters change daily.

Another priority we have with the fund is to support those Afghans displaced in and out the country.


Child Foundation also has an ongoing Bring Bread to Afghanistan campaign providing loaves of bready to many poor households and supports a live-saving Thalassemia Clinic for children. Your support to these cause is greatly appreciated since food and medical supplies are dire needs in the communities we work in.

How soon does my support reach the child I sponsored?

The child will receive your support roughly 1-2 months after a sponsor has initiated sponsorship and paid the first month’s support. It possible for support to take a bit longer for Iranian children as food shipment arrivals may not be aligned well with the beginning of your sponsorship. However, the support will be passed on as soon as possible to help the child focus on studies and remain in school. 

How can I communicate with my sponsored child? 

All communication between sponsors and sponsored children is supervised by the Child Foundation office in the U.S. and our partners' office in the child’s country. There are three ways you can reach out to the child. The most common means is by writing a letter. Please write your letter either in English or the child’s native language and send it to the Child Foundation office mailing address or email. Sponsors can also request a translated and supervised call or video chat by contacting Child Foundation at  [email protected]  or (503) 224-0409. Due to COVID-19 or other crises, a call or video chat may not be possible at this time and we encourage sponsors to write letters.

When is the best time to reach out to my sponsored child?

As initial support can take roughly 1-2 months to reach the child, we suggest sponsors send their first letter or request their first phone or video chat 2-3 months after filling out the sponsorship application. Please see the “How can I communicate with my sponsored child?” question for more.

How will I learn of my sponsored child’s progress or milestones?

Roughly every six months, sponsors will receive a progress report prepared by the child’s social workers.  Usually, the child’s grades, social worker’s report, new photos, and a letter from the student are included. The social worker will mention urgent needs the family faces so that sponsors can choose to send extra one-time support if they would like to.

Additionally, Child Foundation may notify sponsors two months prior to each child’s birthday and on important holidays that impact the child so that sponsors can celebrate the child with a letter or gift. 

How can I send a gift or extra help to my sponsored child and their family?

 Sponsors can donate an extra amount in a one-time donation for a child’s birthday, holiday, or any time the sponsor desires. Sponsors are also more than welcome to send extra support as a one-time donation based on a child’s urgent needs, as explained in a progress report or otherwise.


Sponsors can always inquire about their child’s well-being by calling (503) 224-0409 or emailing our office [email protected] We will reach out to the partner office in the child’s country to learn from the social worker if the child needs extra support at this time. Unfortunately, sometimes family members become ill or unemployed. In natural disasters, homes may be damaged. Depending on the country, sponsors can send extra money for food, rent, clothing, or heat to be used as the family sees fit. The sponsor may also request that a specific item be purchased for the family (i.e., refrigerator, laptop, bicycle, etc.) The partner office will purchase and deliver on the sponsor’s behalf. Child Foundation will receive a receipt and/or other evidence that the child received the gift. 

How can I be sure my sponsored child receives my support?

Child Foundation has extensive experience in nonprofit accounting and financial management to ensure funds are spent in accordance with our donors’ intentions. Each year, we voluntarily perform an audit through an independent licensed auditing company. The audit complies with the Internal Revenue Service’s regulations.  The results and full financial statements are available here .

Additionally, gifts above and beyond the monthly sponsorship for children result in sponsors receiving a thank you letter and evidence the gift was received. For example, if you pay for a bicycle for your sponsored child, you will receive a thank you letter and a photo of the child with the gift once it has been delivered.  

 
How does my child graduate or otherwise leave the program?

Child Foundation commits to facilitating the support of sponsored children until they are finished with their education. This means that a child may choose not to go to college after high school, and they will have “graduated” from our program. If they choose to go to college, we hope you will be their sponsor until they have finished their program. We are proud to have medical doctors and researchers among our graduates who received support for master and doctoral programs.

A child can otherwise leave the program or become “inactive” if they no longer qualify based on their family’s improved economic stance, repeatedly poor performance in school even after tutoring and extra classes, unwillingness to cooperate with social workers’ reporting, or other various reasons. As the sponsor, you would receive a notification of the child’s inactivation with a written rationale and a final letter (if possible). At that point, our office will coordinate with you to match you with a new child in need of support.

What if I need to cancel my sponsorship in the future?

 You may cancel your sponsorship at any time, as there is no contractual obligation to support the student for a specific amount of time. We appreciate your notice and reason for cancelation with one month’s notice via email to [email protected] . Your advanced notice will help us find another sponsor for the child, so their success is not disrupted.

 How do I update my information?   

To update your address, contact, or credit card information, please call our office at 503-224-0409 ext.34 or go to our website childfoundation.org and go to MyCF – the donor portal. If you haven’t established your account there, you can do so, and then update your information. This also gives you access to many other things, including viewing pictures of children in need of sponsorship.

 Iran Education Fund 
What is the Iran Education Eund, and how is it different from the cosponsorship in Iran? 

The Iran Education Fund is a vital foundation to Child Foundation’s Iran Program. It is a deep and effective investment in disadvantaged children’ in multiple ways to increase their access to and success in education. . Through the fund, we provide ongoing support to students with essentials like laptops, tablets, and internet access. Additionally, the fund supports after-school classes, college entrance exam prep materials, and backpacks stuffed with school supplies, and more. As the school year evolves, new needs may arise and be assessed, and the fund can be applied for additional support. In the current situation and into the foreseeable future, students in Iran might transition back and forth from online learning to in-person classes, so we need to be ready to act fast based on their needs.

Every year we want to provide for the needs of the roughly 9,000 children in Iran we support on a monthly basis. You can become an Iran Education Champion today.

What can you buy for the children through the Iran education fund? 

We know that a modern education needs electronics like these, especially when natural disasters and pandemics sometimes force children out of the classroom. Some examples of goods and services you can support include laptops, tablets, backpacks filled with school supplies, internet data, internet modems, college entrance exam study materials, and prep classes.

How can I follow the fund's progress? How will I know what my sponsored child receives from the Iran education fund?

If you sponsor a child living in Iran, school supplies and services purchased for the child will be reflected in the next progress report you receive. You will see what you and others could give to the child.  

If you receive the Child Foundation newsletter, you will also get periodic updates about the fund’s progress.

Can I help my child get specific supplies or services that I know they need by giving to the Iran education fun?

If requested, we can communicate with your child’s social worker to get a direct assessment of their most pressing school supply and service needs. We will then contact you about the estimated costs, and you will be welcome to make a one-time donation toward this need.

Who decides what a child receives through the Iran Education Fund?

The Iran Education Fund is designed to meet the needs of our students based on social worker assessment. Our partner and social workers are working to identify needs across the program. We want our partner to first meet the most important needs of every student before attending to less pressing issues students face.

Each sponsored student has a social worker who will assess their needs based on what they already have access to and the demands of their level of education right now. Our partners in Iran generally deem it necessary for most high school and college students to receive a laptop if they do not already have one. These students are also more likely to need college entrance prep materials and classes. Younger students generally need only a tablet to complete their coursework and log on for online classes. All sorts of students may need internet data depending on their family’s situation. 

How much do school supplies items cost?

Prices fluctuate, especially as the exchange rate shifts. However, at this time, we are spending around $1,000 for older children to receive a laptop and roughly $300   for younger children to receive a tablet.   

Is the Iran education fund compliant with our sanctions on Iran?

Yes. The US Government permits sending funds to Iran for nonprofit purposes of increasing access to education.