01/12/2005, 00.00
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Sponsor a child, national forum at PIME headquarters in Milan

At least 70 organisations are meeting to discuss how to sponsor children, one of the better ways to help Third World children.

Milan (AsiaNews) – The tsunami has orphaned 50,000 children; people around the world have responded by offering to sponsor a child.  

The 6th Forum on Child Sponsoring (Sostegno a distanza or SAD) will take place on January 21 in Milan (Italy) at the headquarters of the Pontifical Institute for Foreign Missions (PIME).

PIME started child sponsoring in 1958 when a missioner, Fr Mario Meda, put an American family in touch with children in Myanmar (formerly Burma). Currently, it is involved in the tsunami emergency.

Among the participants at the Milan meeting there will be the Right Honourable Stefania Prestigiacomo, Italy's minister for Equal Opportunities, Lorenzo Ornaghi, president of the National Agency for ONLUS, Maria Burani Procaccini, chairperson of the Parliamentary Committee for children, Sergio Marelli, president of the association of Italian NGOs and Edoardo Patriarca, Forum Terzo Settore.

In Italy child sponsoring involves 70 organisations, a million sponsors and 120 signatories to the Charter of Principles of Child Sponsoring.

The meeting will look at child sponsoring as it applies to the latest tsunami emergency.

For Corrado Oppedisano, the Forum's spokesperson, it is important to "manage aid money intelligently as well as help children and their families where they are".

Child sponsoring represents an act of solidarity and sharing that favour self-development. It plays a role in nurturing better understanding amongst people from different cultures and nations.

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See also
PIME Campaign for tsunami victims in Asia: An update
Tsunami aid must be quick and on target
Mystery surrounds alleged disappearance of 300 children from Banda Aceh
PIME's tsunami reconstruction campaign raised almost 600,000 euros
Tsunami survivors sue Thai government


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