Worldwide Orphans works to transform the lives of children who have lost their parents and offers them a sense of hope and belonging. Dr. Jane Aronson, a renowned pediatric infectious disease, and adoption medicine specialist, founded Worldwide Orphans in 1997. The organization stemmed from Dr. Aronson’s desire to improve conditions for orphans around the globe. With partner Diana Leo, Dr. Aronson has three adopted children of her own.
WWO rallies around its mission: to transform the lives of orphaned children and help them to become healthy, independent, productive members of their communities and the world. The organization focuses on aiding both orphaned and at-risk children so they can thrive on having happy and healthy childhoods. WWO works to pinpoint the needs of orphaned children; which are then addressed through medical, developmental, psychosocial and educational programs that are respectful to their cultures.
Worldwide Orphans initiatives and fundraisers could be fun and spontaneous. One example is the year Amy Poehler failed to the Emmy Award for her work on the series Parks and Recreation. The actress joined actor Jon Hamm and hosted the losers party. The night’s winners could only enter the party after donating $1,000 to the Worldwide Orphans Foundation. By the end of the night, the organization had raised $30,000 in donations from both winners and losers.
Artists and celebrities such as Andrew Garfield, Emma Stone, Kyle MacLachlan, Oprah Winfrey, and many others have been brand ambassadors of this organization which aims to transform the lives of orphan children in places like Bulgaria, Ethiopia, Haiti, Serbia, and Vietnam, among others.
WWO provides children with a sense of intimacy by way of their one-to-one program that recruits adults to pair with children. The importance of this project is reflected in children who begin to understand what it means to be attached to a loving caregiver: because, according to Dr. Aronson, being nurtured is a child’s birthright. WWO also addresses all healthcare issues, including HIV/AIDS, and encourages creativity, teamwork, sports (Andrew Garfield currently serves as WWO’s Ambassador of Sport) and provides education. Many orphaned children are developmentally delayed: studies have shown that children lose one month of developmental skills for every three months spent in an orphanage. By the age of three, orphaned children are usually a full year behind, developmentally.
To assist families considered at high-risk of abandoning their children, WWO focuses on providing them with skills and confidence to adequately raise children. In situations where children have already been orphaned, WWO will work to reintegrate children to their families.
Worldwide Orphans gives children hope for what’s to come. The foundation strives to deliver not only sound bodies but also the coping, social and life skills children need to be independent in the future. WWO stands firmly behind the belief that all children, regardless of circumstances, yearn for love and dream of bright futures for themselves.
As there are more orphan children around the world, as problems of displacement, migration, war, and conflict increase, children tend to be the most affected, especially orphans.
If you’d like to contribute to this organization that aims to improve the lives of orphan children, please visit their website at wwo.org ■