World Vision

For Syria's Child Refugees, 4 Years With No School Can Be Devastating

Debbie Wolfe | Posted 03.17.2015 | Canada Impact
Debbie Wolfe

An eight-year-old girl, a Syrian refugee living in Lebanon, is someone I know only from a photograph. I was captivated by the girl whose schooling was so critical to her, that she grabbed her report card while fleeing the rocket attacks on her home town. That was two years ago. I've been unable to find any recent updates on Jouri.

How Your March Break Can Break the Chains of Child Labour

Debbie Wolfe | Posted 03.13.2015 | Canada Impact
Debbie Wolfe

Canadians travelling to warm spots this March Break may be approached by child labourers selling trinkets or souvenirs. In El Salvador, this young girl carries heavy basket of water bottles to peddle to tourists. So what should Canadians do, if they encounter a child who seems to be in danger? Many of us are so concerned about misreading a situation, or imposing our own Canadian views on another way of life, that we do nothing. We may comment about how sad the situation is, and then move along.

Sponsoring a Child Overseas Can be Sunshine in the Darkness

Debbie Wolfe | Posted 03.11.2015 | Canada Impact
Debbie Wolfe

I've been lucky to have a fulfilling marriage, a job that I love and a life filled with meaning. But like anyone, I'm familiar with the stretches of hopelessness that can come when life gets to be too much -- or not nearly enough. I began sponsoring Alejandro in Bolivia when he was just five, sure that I'd be improving his life. What took me completely off-guard was the way that he's lifted mine.

Strong Women, Strong World

World Vision | Posted 03.07.2015 | Canada Impact
World Vision

The question of what makes a woman powerful is something that I wrestle with constantly, especially on International Women's Day March 8. There are lots of quantifiable ways to measure a woman's influence, like the position she holds, the degrees she has earned. But what about the women, here in Canada or around the world, who may never earn a PhD, lead a large corporation, or shape public policies? Are they not also powerful?

A Generous Donation Makes Charities Think Harder About Cooperation

Craig and Marc Kielburger | Posted 03.06.2015 | Canada Impact
Craig and Marc Kielburger

When Canadian music industry mogul Gary Slaight announced his foundation was giving a $7 million donation to seven non-profit organizations, he didn't just hand over a cheque. He presented a vision. Slaight wants non-profits to come out of their silos and change the world with cooperation.

Finding Laughter in the World's Toughest Places

Joan Kelley Weisshaar Walker | Posted 02.19.2015 | Canada Impact
Joan Kelley Weisshaar Walker

Canadian funny couple Colin Mochrie (left) and Debra McGrath (far right) share more than world-class comedic talent. They love spending time with some of the poorest children on the planet. Joan Kelley talked with them recently.

Give Valentine's Gifts That Are Child Labour Free

Debbie Wolfe | Posted 02.13.2015 | Canada Impact
Debbie Wolfe

Working with World Vision, I know that too much chocolate available in our stores comes at the heartbreaking expense of some 2 million children worldwide. Here are some of the things I've done this year, to keep the fun in Valentine's Day and honour those I love, while caring for children around the world:

Why Children Overseas May Not Have Been "Good" This Year

Debbie Wolfe | Posted 02.22.2015 | Canada Impact
Debbie Wolfe

It's true that most governments in developing countries provide education for children. And there's no doubt that millions of children overseas are intelligent, hard-working and yearning to succeed. But let's consider the many challenges which children in the world's poorest regions face when trying to attend school.

10 Years After the Tsunami: Finding Peace in Disasters

Dave Toycen | Posted 02.20.2015 | Canada Impact
Dave Toycen

As I remember the South East Asian Tsunami and other global disasters which have broken my heart, my challenge has been finding enough peace to sleep at night, while waking with the renewed energy to do my best for those who survive. Somehow, we must all find that place.

Celebrating 25 Years of Children's Rights

Dave Toycen | Posted 01.19.2015 | Canada Impact
Dave Toycen

Thursday is the 25th anniversary of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, the most widely endorsed human rights treaty in history. The Convention enshrines children's rights to protection, survival, development and participation. For a quarter century it has influenced laws, policies and government priorities in 194 countries. Most importantly, it has changed how children are viewed and treated.

How the Property Brothers Use Their Fame to Help the World's Poorest

Joan Kelley Weisshaar Walker | Posted 01.17.2015 | Canada Impact
Joan Kelley Weisshaar Walker

They're known on television as the Property Brothers. Drew scouts neglected houses and negotiates the purchases, while twin brother Jonathan works magic through renovation. But there's a lot you may not know about Drew and Jonathan Scott and their older brother, JD, including their passion for helping the world's poorest children.

Many of Today's Wars Have Smaller Soldiers

Debbie Wolfe | Posted 01.11.2015 | Canada Impact
Debbie Wolfe

Today's conflicts are smaller in scale than the world wars on which we normally focus come Remembrance Day. But tragically, so are many of the soldiers. There are some 250,000 child soldiers in the world today, mostly in Africa. Children the age of my school-aged sons are shoved headlong into a hell that's unimaginable for most adults, let alone a child.

Helping Kids Understand the Gift of Food This Thanksgiving

Debbie Wolfe | Posted 12.07.2014 | Canada Impact
Debbie Wolfe

When it comes to Thanksgiving, there's no question that my kids are grateful for the festive food on the table -- an exciting change from our usual meals at home. But like many Canadian children, they have no sense of what it means to be hungry for more than an hour or so.

Canadian Dynamo Emerges from Refugee Camp Childhood

Joan Kelley Weisshaar Walker | Posted 10.28.2014 | Canada Impact
Joan Kelley Weisshaar Walker

Jennifer Moonfoxy (right) with the author in Canada. Canada is home to people from all over the world, each with a unique story. Many have endure...

South Sudan: Don't Look Away

Debbie Wolfe | Posted 09.08.2014 | Canada Impact
Debbie Wolfe

Three years ago today, there was dancing on the streets of South Sudan. A new nation had just been born. Having voted to separate from Sudan, the people were bursting with dreams for a free and independent future. But the anniversary of independence is not being marked today with celebrations.

Helping Kids Build the "Gratitude Muscle" on Canada Day

Debbie Wolfe | Posted 08.28.2014 | Canada Impact
Debbie Wolfe

High school students with high levels of gratitude reported having stronger marks, less depression and envy, and a more positive outlook than less grateful teens. But gratitude is like a muscle -- it needs regular exercise.

I Saw Child Labour With My Own Eyes

Rick Campanelli | Posted 07.23.2014 | Canada Impact
Rick Campanelli

I felt sick to my stomach standing at a brick factory in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. These kids have traded in their childhoods, working seven-day weeks so they can continue to stay alive. Just a stone's throw away was a new luxury housing development. Were these bricks used to build it?

I Could Never Have Imagined 32-Year-Old Me Adopting Two Adolescent Girls

World Vision | Posted 07.15.2014 | Canada Living
World Vision

Very shortly after finding out I was approved to adopt, my adoption worker came to my home to tell me about two amazing adolescent sisters: Charity and Emily. I sat at my kitchen table for the rest of the night, staring straight ahead like a deer in the headlights, thinking about everything the worker had asked me to consider.

Harper: Maternal, Child Health A Priority

CP | Diana Mehta, The Canadian Press | Posted 06.28.2014 | Canada Politics

TORONTO - An upcoming Toronto conference on child and maternal health in developing countries, that will bring together international leaders, experts...

How I Remember Rwanda

Joan Kelley Weisshaar Walker | Posted 06.10.2014 | Canada Impact
Joan Kelley Weisshaar Walker

Ten years ago at the 10th anniversary of the Rwandan genocide I went to Rwanda with World Vision. I knew it would be a difficult trip, but I had no idea the impact that trip would have on me going forward. Now, as we near the 20th anniversary of the horrific Rwandan genocide, my heart is still broken by the meaningless killing.

A Response to Kristy Woudstra From World Vision Canada's President

Dave Toycen | Posted 06.03.2014 | Canada
Dave Toycen

It was with much sadness that I read Kristy Woudstra's article published on this site on Thursday morning. While World Vision U.S. has made changes to their policies over the past week, World Vision Canada has not. As a Christian organization, we follow the example of Jesus who reached out to everyone, especially those who were marginalized or left out.

I Was Blocked From Hiring a Gay Person at World Vision Canada

Kristy Woudstra | Posted 06.04.2014 | Canada Impact
Kristy Woudstra

Why do I care about the hiring practices of a Christian international humanitarian organization? Well, I worked at World Vision Canada for nearly 10 years and last week's news brought me back to one incident that still looms large: the time I tried to hire a lesbian at World Vision Canada. As a senior manager, I was hiring for an editorial position. In the final stages of the recruitment, HR informed me that the candidate had shared she was gay. She seemed ideal and I was excited to work with her. Without telling me, HR called the candidate to let her know that she didn't get the job. A senior staff manager told me he had come to the realization that if you're gay, you can't be Christian. And only Christians can work at World Vision, so we couldn't hire her.

After Three Years of War, Syrian Childhoods Are Shattered

Debbie Wolfe | Posted 05.11.2014 | Canada Impact
Debbie Wolfe

The war in Syria is about to enter its fourth year. For three years, World Vision staff members have sat with traumatized Syrian refugee children as they struggle to share stories you'll never find in a Canadian picture book. Their hands shake, and the words come out in fits and starts.

Staying Alive: Celebrating Canadian Youth Movements

World Vision | Posted 04.22.2014 | Canada Impact
World Vision

A movement with real staying power was kick-started way back in 1971 by a Calgary teenager, Ruth Roberts. More than 40 years later, it's still going strong -- not only in Canada, but globally. This annual fundraiser to help children around the world through World Vision has become a world-wide movement: the 30 Hour Famine.

The Syrians Who Won't Be at This Week's Peace Talks

Tanya Penny | Posted 03.24.2014 | Canada Impact
Tanya Penny

As long-awaited Syria peace talks begin this week, World Vision's Tanya Penny will be watching closely. She has been living alongside Syrian refugees in Jordan for the past two months, telling their stories with words and photographs. Here, Tanya describes the heartbreak that even the camera can't capture.