Our Impact Stories

Volunteers join community to help make Wallace a better place

"Most people forget about Wallace," says Robin Norman, who has lived in that West Virginia community for seven years.
World Vision has been improving the community of Wallace since 2006, partnering with local churches to identify families who need help.

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Partnership helps devastated community rebuild a year later

About three weeks before the deadly tornado hit Moore, Oklahoma in May 2013, Pastor Kirk Pankratz sensed his church needed to use its facilities in a new way for the community. Following the EF5 storm Kirk had his answer—turn the church's Midwest City campus into a disaster relief center.

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World Vision's Day of Caring provides hope after heartbreak

World Vision and Public School 42 in Far Rockaway in New York hosted a Day of Caring for families whose lives were unexpectedly derailed by the rising waters and raging wind of Superstorm Sandy in October 2012.

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Celebrating a 15th birthday by helping others

On her 13th birthday, Madisyn Miller celebrated with a sleepover. When she turned 14, she and a friend got their makeup done.
Those were fun, but Madisyn had other plans for her recent 15th birthday: She invited her friends to volunteer in a warehouse for World Vision's U.S. Programs.

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Navajo men serve tornado survivors in Oklahoma: 'Now it's time for us to give'

Ernie Begay has seen dust devils, the thin whirlwinds of dirt and debris that scoot across the dry lands of the American Southwest. But he never knew the devastation of a tornado until he recently volunteered to help survivors of massive twisters that battered Oklahoma in May 2013.

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Grateful storm survivor tells donors: 'Thank you for being epic'

Celeste Grimes remembers walking with her children through Far Rockaway, her neighborhood in Queens, New York, the morning after Superstorm Sandy blasted through the Jersey Shore.

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Mission team's efforts mean more than fresh paint

Sheila Workman dreamed of hunter green and brown paint for 18 years, ever since moving to West Virginia. She knew if she was ever given the opportunity to have her home painted, those would be the exterior colors, inspired by her love of the mountains.

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Tuscaloosa tornado: Looking back at two years of recovery...

"As I saw images from Moore, Oklahoma, flash across my screen in May 2013, I was immediately brought back to similar scenes of devastation that took place in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, in 2011."

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Youth empowers peers, helping them 'spread their wings and fly'

Penn State sophomore and World Vision Youth Empowerment Program (YEP) alumna Yemi Olugbuyi is motivating other students to create positive change in their lives and communities.

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"At Night, We Are So Cold"

Torture. That's how 12-year-old Travis Marshall describes the bitter cold he and his mother face when they go to bed at night. Superstorm Sandy left them homeless when floodwaters rushed into their first floor apartment in Far Rockaway, Queens.

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U.S. Poverty; Burden on Mothers, Children

Not much has changed, according to the annual income report from the U.S. Census Bureau—and that's not good news.

About 46.2 million Americans were living in poverty in 2011. The U.S. median income for 2011, at $50,054, showed a modest 1.5 percent decline from 2010.

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Providing Schools with the Tools to Succeed

Several years ago, classrooms at St. Mary's School in Los Angeles lacked whiteboards and cupboards. Many students—more than 90 percent of whom qualified for free or reduced-price lunch—didn't have school supplies.

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Isaiah Thomas delivers free books and smiles to hometown children

Isaiah Thomas is exceptional, and not just because he's a little guy succeeding among giants in the NBA.
The 5-foot-9-inch point guard for the Sacramento Kings melted the hearts of students during a late May visit to Boze Elementary School in his hometown of Tacoma, Washington.

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Gift of shoes helps families, brings smiles

At one time in their life, Tiffany Lewandowsky and her military husband were doing well financially, so much so that she regularly donated to charitable causes and volunteered at the local food bank.
But after Brian was wounded in Iraq, their steady income dried up.

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With Help, a new home rises for the Hoke family

For about 30 minutes on May 19, 2013, the Hoke family—parents James and Michelle and children Cassie and J.W.—escaped underground to a storm shelter. Above them, a tornado destroyed their home in Shawnee, Oklahoma.
They lost everything.

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NBA stars give Christmas toys and hope to show that 'somebody cares' for children

As snow turned to slush outside the Garfield Community Center in Seattle, Alexandra and her three youngest children warmed up inside—physically and emotionally.
The mother lost her job earlier in 2013. Christmas loomed in five days.

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Free school supplies 'huge surprise' for U.S. kids

Alyna has always been excited about school.

When she was 5, she told her grandmother she planned to live with her while attending classes at the University of Puget Sound.

The 11-year-old girl is still determined as ever, planning to write her way to the university.

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World Vision staff share faith while helping family

Rosetta McDaniel keeps her pantry stocked with peanut butter and pancake mix because of all of the friends of her teenage son, Randy, who spend time at her home, typically bringing their appetites with them.

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Days of Play and Healing

One month after a howling tornado ripped through the Oklahoma City suburb of Moore, 22 children play quietly in a room filled with a variety of playthings: figurines of animals and action heroes, boxes of crayons, bottles of bubbles, trays of sand, lumps of clay.

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Helping make a future home, a better life

Bicycles, soccer balls, and water guns lay strewn across the front yard. Cats, chickens, and the occasional chipmunk scurry through the garden. Like their great-grandson, Austin, zooming around the gravel driveway on his bike, Cecil and Linda Criss are almost always in motion.

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Hunger challenges cancer survivor, but 'with God's help, I can do it'

"Food insecurity" sounds like beef and veggies with an anxiety problem.

But hunger is hardly a joke for more than 50 million Americans—including 16.7 million children under 18—who were considered food insecure in 2011.

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When Half a Camel is Enough

Bestselling author Debbie Macomber, shares her story of teaching her grandchildren a powerful lesson on charity and compassion. Her publisher, Random House, decided to make a very generous donation to support World Vision's work to improve education here in the United States.

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Finding 'a New Normal' After a Tornado

Life has been full of changes for Tim and Rebecca Acreys since spring 2011. Rebecca found out she was pregnant with their second child on April 25. Two days later, a tornado struck their valley in Etowah County, destroying the family's mobile home.

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Helping Community Organizations Help Youth

Like many local nonprofit organizations that serve children, Operation Exodus' plans exceeded its capacity to accomplish them. The mentoring and tutoring program helps families in Washington Heights, a neighborhood in New York City where nearly a third of the population lives at or below the poverty line.

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