World Connect Funds 51 New Grants Through Kids to Kids Program

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Funded Projects to Improve Lives of More Than 5,000 Kids in Four Countries

The beauty of the Kids to Kids model is the big impact that even small contributions can make

World Connect, formerly Infante Sano, a non-profit that empowers local leaders in underserved communities to solve local problems, today announced the latest round of Kids to Kids grant recipients. Members of Kids to Kids, a youth-led program, voted to fund 51 arts, sports, education and environmental projects in Belize, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic and El Salvador. These projects will reach over 5,000 kids and brings the total of kids whose lives have been touched by Kids to Kids projects to over 12,000.

The Kids to Kids program uses money raised by youth in the US to fund small but powerful grants at the community level in partner countries. Grant applications are submitted by Peace Corp Volunteers who work with local leaders to identify very specific community needs and projects that are attainable and impactful. The Kids to Kids Members in the US collaborate by raising money and awareness and determining which projects receive funding. The commitment of these youth and their growing involvement in the program is being celebrated on April 30th with National Kids to Kids Day (see related press release).

“The beauty of the Kids to Kids model is the big impact that even small contributions can make,” said Sarah Henry, executive director of World Connect. “Kids in the U.S. can throw a bake sale or recycle cans and the money they raise can reach right into the heart of a community thousands of miles away. We are working in regions of such need and on projects aimed with such precision by community leaders that our microgrants have a macro impact.”

Grant Details
Belize—Kids to Kids funded six grants in Belize, bringing the total projects to date there up to 60. New projects include the Medina Bank School Nutrition Program, which provides a healthy meal and snacks every week to the 77 students and involves students and parents in preparing and even growing some of the school’s food. And Kicks for Kids!, which will give the soccer-crazed kids in the remote village of San Benito Poite their first organized youth group and sports team.

Costa Rica—There are nine new Kids to Kids projects in Costa Rica, bringing the total count to 40 for the country. New additions include Photos to Postcards, which will provide children in the town school in Cano Negro with disposable cameras to capture the beauty of their village to sell as post cards to tourists. Beside awakening the kids to the scenery around them and getting them involved in the community, this project will fund itself and other school improvements with the proceeds from the postcard sales.

Dominican Republic—In this round of grants, Kids to Kids added fifteen new projects to the line-up in the Dominican Republic and has now funded more than 50 projects in the country. The fifteen new projects include Recyclopedia, which will help get a local library off the ground with its first set of encyclopedias—a critical learning resource that can be used and reused by the children of the community. Another great project is the Art Camp in Higuerito, a two week summer camp that will provide a much needed outlet for creativity for the local kids and will reinvigorate the local ceramic artisan trade.

El Salvador—Kids to Kids is reaching 3,000 kids in El Salvador by funding 22 projects in this round of grants. Funded projects include Comite de Salud para una Comunidad Sana (Health Committee for a Healthy Community), which will fill a gap in access to basic health services by training local kids in first aid, hygiene, good sanitation practices and disease prevention, and Let’s Dance, which will defray the costs of the shoes and costumes for kids involved in the youth dance group at the cultural center in the town of Paraiso de Osorio.

About Kids to Kids
World Connect’s youth-led Kids to Kids Program empowers local leaders in underserved communities to solve local problems affecting kids. Founded by four middle school girls in Massachusetts, Kids to Kids encourages grassroots fundraising by kids in the US for youth arts, sports, education and environmental projects. The connections built by Kids to Kids create a new generation of leaders and global citizens. To date, Kids to Kids has reached over 12,000 kids by providing microgrants at the community level in Belize, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, and El Salvador, and is currently accepting proposals for new projects in Ecuador, Mali, Morocco, Peru, Philippines and Rwanda. Learn more about the Kids to Kids Program and how it is creating opportunities for kids everywhere at http://www.kidstokids.org.

About World Connect
World Connect, formerly Infante Sano, is a non-profit organization that empowers local leaders in underserved areas worldwide to solve local problems by improving the health and wellbeing of women, children and communities. Visit World Connect at http://www.worldconnect-us.org to learn more about the long-lasting and transformational impact of its programs.

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Jacquelyn Caglia