Sponsoring a student is a one-to-one relationship between a Guatemalan student and the donor who makes it possible for the student to continue in school past sixth grade. But sponsoring a student in CoEd’s Rise Program is so much more than just providing an academic scholarship.

For the promising, young Guatemalan students who would otherwise be forced to drop out of school, the Rise Program gives them the tools they need to break the cycle of poverty once and for all.

For the sponsors, it is an unbreakable bond that positively impacts their lives forever.

Don’t just take our word for it though. We sat down with some of our Rise sponsors to get their take on what being a sponsor means to them.

Pat’s Story

What motivated you to become a Rise sponsor?

I was friends with Casey Kerr and Kathy Lowe and I house sat for them when they went on a CoEd tour. They always shared with me their experiences and I decided first to sponsor a student. Then I decided that I wanted to go on a tour.

What one word would you choose to describe your experience sponsoring a Rise student?

Absolutely amazing!!!

As a teacher and mother it fit right in my desire to help a young girl be able to believe in herself and have a better life.

What does being a Rise sponsor mean to you?

I’m very thankful to have the ability to help my student get a good education.

What would you say to people who are considering becoming a Rise sponsor?

I would encourage them just to read some of the biographies of the students who are waiting for sponsors. I only read 2 when I knew Blanca needed to be mine.

Alec and Ashley’s Story

What motivated you to become a Rise sponsor?

We first learned about CoEd through Alec’s employer. After researching CoEd and the different programs they offer, the Rise sponsorship really spoke to us. Middle/High School is when you learn so much about yourself, the world around you, and who you want to become. Because this short amount of time in our lives is so influential; we knew the choice to be a Rise sponsor would be very fulfilling for our student, and ourselves!

What one word would you choose to describe your experience sponsoring a Rise student?

Rewarding

Ashley and her new Rise scholar, Silvia, volunteering together

We recently attended the Graduation Tour last year and had the chance to meet our first student, Heydi, who was graduating. The gratitude we received from Heydi and her family was immeasurable. We were so thankful to have the chance to meet Heydi and attend her high school graduation. The whole experience left us feeling so many positive emotions. During the Grad Tour we had the opportunity to complete a service project in a small town. This is where we met our current student, Silvia. Having the opportunity to meet and connect with Silvia was truly a special moment. The gratitude and fulfillment we experience as Rise sponsors is very rewarding!

What does being a Rise sponsor mean to you?

It means that we have the ability to make an impact in our student’s life. Giving the gift of education to Silvia is a gift she will use for her entire life. We love hearing updates on Silvia as she excels through her studies. It reminds you that although we may be a “world away”, we are helping Silvia accomplish her goals.

What would you say to people who are considering becoming a Rise sponsor?

Do it!

You can rest assured knowing that your donation is greatly impacting your student’s life. I would also add that planning ahead and attending your student’s graduation ceremony is an experience unlike any other. Traveling to Guatemala is no small feat, but having the time to prepare makes it very doable. Even if you are unable to attend your student’s graduation, the letters you will share and the updates you’ll receive from CoEd really gives you a chance to be present in someone’s life. You will not regret being a Rise sponsor!

Susan’s Story

Susan’s Rise scholars: Cristy, Damaris, Blanca, and María

What motivated you to become a Rise sponsor?

What motivated me to become a Rise sponsor was knowing how important education is in my life and hearing about Guatemalan families trying to get to freedom and safety in America where their children would have the opportunity for an education and a good life. I read how the Obama Foundation partners with organizations such as CoEd who offer education and support for especially girls who have so few options…. And, for me, the connection was made.

What one word would you choose to describe your experience sponsoring a Rise student?

Gratitude

My intention was to help some young girls in Guatemala experience an education. What happened was making the commitment and seeing their pictures and reading their letters somehow made my world bigger – bigger than what I do every day and my petty complaints.

What does being a Rise sponsor mean to you?

Being a Rise sponsor feels like the girls and I are in this together. That I get to be with them on this journey where they discover how wonderful they are and what they are capable of being, doing, and experiencing.

What would you say to people who are considering becoming a Rise sponsor?

I would tell people who are considering becoming a Rise sponsor, that if they feel the connection now before committing, I believe they will find the experience with these girls to be so gratifying.

We sponsors receive as much as these young women do… from knowing them, their situation, and watching them reach for a more confident and joyful life.

Are you ready to change not only your life, but the life of a student in need?
Sponsor a Rise student like Dulce!