How much does it cost?
Sponsoring a child costs $35 a month or $420 for a full year. This covers the cost of one day of Shepherd programming for the child each month. Donate now by clicking here.
How does Hand Up help my sponsored child/Shepherd?
Hand Up helps cover and reduce program costs for Shepherd kids. While a typical After-School program might cost more than $100 per month for a single student, Shepherd’s After-School costs a family only $10 per child for a whole year. We ask for this nominal fee because we’ve found parents’ investment in the program results in higher attendance and fewer dropouts, while also keeping the program affordable for families in need.
Why does my child have an alias?
Many of Shepherd’s kids come from sensitive family situations, where presenting their known identity could put them at risk. Therefore, we go to great lengths to protect their identities, including assigning each child an alias. Once you attend a Shepherd volunteer orientation, you can learn your child’s real name and even meet him or her in person.
Which kids are eligible for sponsorship?
Kids who attend the Shepherd Academy or After-School Programs are all eligible for sponsorship.
Can a child still be in Shepherd’s programs without being sponsored?
Yes. Being sponsored does not affect whether or not a child is accepted into Shepherd’s programs, but sponsorship does help us provide the resources all of our kids need. Sponsorship also creates unique opportunities for our kids to interact with positive, adult role models.
What background does my sponsored child come from?
Shepherd kids come from a variety of backgrounds, but the following statistics should provide you a snapshot into their lives. In our neighborhoods, the median family income is as low as $27,515, compared to $39,957 for Marion County. More than 90% of the children in our programs qualify for free or reduced school lunches. Less than 50% of students graduate high school, and less than 25% of high school students in our neighborhoods go to college.
How often will I hear from my sponsored child?
You can expect quarterly communication from your sponsored child. This may include pictures they’ve colored, cards they’ve written or updates from their teachers about how your child is doing.
How can I get involved with the child I sponsor?
There are a variety of ways for sponsors to get involved:
- Write to your child. Just send the letter to:
Shepherd Community Center
Attn: Child Sponsorship
4107 E. Washington St.
Indianapolis, IN 46201
- Attend Shepherd’s volunteer orientations. Then you can learn your child’s real name and visit the program in which your sponsored child participates.
- Visit your child during their program. Once you’ve attended orientation, Shepherd staff will help you set up a visit time, and you can eat lunch with an Academy child or help an After-School child with his or her homework.
- Consider becoming your child’s mentor. The time commitment for mentorship is greater, but the relationship you build with your child will be deep and fulfilling. Contact Matt Long with questions about mentoring.
- Pray! It may not seem as important as visiting your child, but we covet your prayers for the kids at Shepherd.