[Video] Meet a sponsored community in Bangladesh

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Agoilijhara is one of the communities in Bangladesh that sponsors from the United States help support.

Watch today's video to experience the everyday sights and sounds in Agoilijhara, and learn more about both the challenges the people of Agoilijhara face as well as the ways that sponsorship touches their lives.

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Today, let’s take a quick trip to World Vision’s Agoilijhara community in Bangladesh, where dirty water, disease, and inadequate school facilities are keeping children and families trapped in poverty … and where child sponsorship is helping.

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    Photoblog: The worst and best story I’ve ever covered

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    Our photojournalist, Jon Warren, was in Rwanda in 1994 during the genocide and has returned several times since, including just last fall.

    Today's photoblog shows Jon's work in 1994 – "It was the worst story I’ve ever covered" – and how almost 20 years later it has become the best.

    Check out Jon's amazing photography ... and see what made such a difference.

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    In 1994, I was a freelance photographer working with a variety of international aid groups. So when refugees began flooding out of Rwanda, I was on my way to the border city of Goma immediately. I knew very little about what was happening – just that there was a mass exodus and rumors of genocide.

    The situation on the ground was unimaginably horrific. The first day in the camps, I was carefully framing a photo of a family cooking when I realized that the woman at my feet was dead.

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      Rwanda 20 years: The story that almost got away

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      When writer Kari Costanza first went to Rwanda in 2007, she heard about an amazing story of reconciliation, but wasn't able to capture it. Last fall, she returned ... and the story found her!

      Sometimes God shows you the story He wants told, often when you least expect it. Watch the story of friendship and redemption after the Rwanda genocide that He gave Kari a second chance to tell.

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      The first time I went to Rwanda, in 2007, I met Juliette and Emmanuel. I’d been asked to shoot a short video with two people who had reconciled after the genocide. We were so busy that we didn’t have much time to spend with them—just enough to know how powerful their story was.

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        A bright future ahead

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        Gihozo is only 4 years old, but he has to walk up to three hours a day alone to fetch dirty water for his family members, who struggle to provide enough food. But the future is looking brighter for him — he was recently registered for World Vision sponsorship!

        World Vision’s Laura Reinhardt writes about meeting Gihozo and the hope she has for his future.

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        In January, my grandson turned 4. We met at a pizza parlor where gifts from family and friends covered one whole table. Everyone ate plenty of pizza and chocolate cake, and even then there were leftovers. He was giddy with all the excitement surrounding his special day.

        A little over a month later, I met another 4-year-old boy, Gihozo. He lives in southern Rwanda with his two sisters, mom, and dad.

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          All in: A single gift that changed a life

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          World Vision videographer Brian Crass reflects on a trip to Zambia, where he met former sponsored child Mazuba, whose sponsor had given him a special gift of a cow.

          Read how Mazuba multiplied that gift into 20 cows, and what his plans are for the future!

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          I’ve always liked the Bible story of the woman who gave two coins (Mark 12:41-44). She made a decision to give and she was all in. It’s a story about humility and obedience. It’s a story about faith.

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            Rwanda 20 years: The story in the corner

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            Next Monday marks 20 years since the Rwanda genocide began. This month, we'll be sharing photos, videos, and perspectives that together tell the 20-year story of recovery and reconciliation in Rwanda, and the role World Vision has played in that story these past 20 years.

            One of our wonderful storytellers, Kari Costanza, writes today about one of her trips to Rwanda and Jean Marie – the meek man standing in the corner – who was able to show her the story she was aiming to tell.

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            People often ask me how I go about finding stories for World Vision.

            I could tell them how I’d been a television newscast producer for 10 years, and how I moved to World Vision where I worked for the magazine, learning to hone in on the perfect story for the World Vision audience—a story that is compelling, representative of the broader community, and has—or will have—some sort of World Vision involvement.

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              Margaret in my heart

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              Our wonderful writer Kari Costanza reflects today in memoriam of her friend Margaret from Uganda on her recent return trip to Gulu.

              Read how World Vision sponsors brought joy and fresh hope to the families Kari visited, as they had to Margaret, and how memories of their friendship strengthened Kari on her trip.

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              I was just in Gulu, Uganda, a place made infamous by Joseph Kony and the Lord’s Resistance Army. From the 1990s until 2006, Kony made life a living hell in northern Uganda, abducting children—both boys and girls—into his army. The boys he forced into fighting; the girls he made soldiers’ “wives.”

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                Godly giving through relationship

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                What does it mean to give biblically? The Old Testament models a 10-percent tithe — but what about the New Testament? Anna Goodworth, a member of the Hartford Women of Vision chapter, reflects on that today: "Without a consistent relationship with the poor, we cannot sustain giving or the desire to give as God intended."

                Read more about how God called Anna into relationship…and what He wanted of her.

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                Do remember the first time you went on a missions trip or saw poverty up close through a trip, a story, or a cause? Remember that passion?

                I remember coming home from a trip to Haiti in college, and I wanted to sell all my stuff, live simply, and give all I had to the poor. Yet slowly my previous spending habits came back and my heart was dulled.

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                  The contagious joy of sponsorship

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                  Over the past 9 years, our partnership with Family Christian stores has changed the lives of 150,000 children through sponsorship! Come celebrate this landmark with us this weekend!

                  Today, Carrie Caddell – administrator for this partnership – tells the story of Jennifer, a Family Christian employee who has found joy through her relationship with a child.

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                  Jennifer’s joy is contagious. When you walk into the Family Christian store where she works, the mood is light and uplifting. Worship music plays over the audio system and Jennifer is helping a customer complete a purchase. She begins talking with them about World Vision child sponsorship and tells them her own story …

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                    A safe harbor

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                    World Vision writer Kari Costanza reflects on taking sanctuary in her church's parking lot while being stuck in a snow storm last weekend, and how World Vision and our supporters are able to provide a safe harbor for millions of children around the world.

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                    Last Saturday, I celebrated a milestone birthday with my dear friend Laura Reinhardt, also celebrating a milestone birthday. I won’t tell you which. We did our favorite things – walking and talking for five miles around Green Lake, following by a dinner at a spectacular restaurant to which we also walked called Tilth. At Tilth, I discovered Porcini Brulee – my new favorite of the Brulee family.

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