Sun, Jan 11, 2004 - Page 4 News List

Donors meet 'their' sponsored children at fund meeting


Taiwan's Fund for Children and Families (CCF), a major non-profit organization focused on children's issues, yesterday held a gathering for its sponsors and sponsored children.

More than 1,000 sponsors showed up to meet over 500 children in Taipei's 228 Peace Park.

Sergeant Chou Pai-huang (周百煌), 41, was one of the sponsors who attended the gathering.

Chou donated the gift money from his wedding to the CCF in 1988 and became a permanent sponsor.

"When I was a child, I was helped by foreign sponsors via the CCF, so when I grew up, I wanted to help others too," Chou said.

The fund came to Chou's aid when his father passed away when he was 10 years old, and the sponsorship lasted for about three years after Chou's older brother and sister started working to support the family.

After he became a police officer in 1983, Chou started donating money to the CCF. In 1988 he became a permanent sponsor by donating a lump sum of NT$120,000.

Chou actually met his wife via the CCF. She had also received help from the fund, and they met at a function held by the CCD. They fell in love and today have three children of their own.

"I feel that sponsored children are like my own children. I like to attend CCF gatherings and meet my sponsored children when we have time," Chou said.

Chu Ying-ting (朱瑩婷), a 19-year-old girl sponsored by Chou, said she felt that having a sponsor was like having an extra person caring for her.

"I write to Mr Chou about my studies and my dreams," Chu said.

She is studying restaurant management and her dream is to become a chef specializing in Chinese snacks.

The CCF was founded in 1950, and it has helped more than 120,000 Taiwanese children since then.

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