There are two ways for sponsors to stay involved with their sponsored student.
You can write letters and share photos to get to know each other, or plan a visit to meet your student and their family face to face.
Plan a Visit
It is our sincere desire that every Sponsor is able to meet the student that they are bringing hope and opportunity to in person. Our Sponsorship Teams in the U.S. and in Guatemala are eager to help coordinate up to two visits each year within the following guidelines:
- Every effort will be made to ensure the first visit in a calendar year takes place in the family’s home, with the exception of New Hope
- Common Hope will arrange all details of your visit including: logistical preparation, translators, transportation and accompaniment
- Four individuals are welcome to join in a visit
- A sponsor is allowed to bring one age appropriate book for your student and one small game to play together
- Please note that it is very difficult to set up a visit with less than 2-3 weeks advance notice.
- We do not recommend more than one visit within a 30-day period
- Graduation visits do not count as one of the two visits allowed per year
To set up your visit or receive more information, contact Natalie, our Sponsorship Coordinator at 651-917-1045 or email NatalieM@us.commonhope.org.
Sponsorship visit FAQs
Contact Common Hope’s sponsorship staff at 651-917-1045 or email us. For us to serve you best please have your travel dates and dates your available for a visit handy. Please note that it is very difficult to set up a visit with less than 2-3 weeks advance notice.
A social worker and a bilingual Common Hope staff member to serve as a translator will accompany all sponsors.
Visits can take place on weekdays and are scheduled to begin between 8:00am and 3:00pm. Because Common Hope staff must be present during every sponsorship visit, it is not possible for visits to take place on weekends or holidays. Evening visits are not permitted for safety reasons.
Visits to students in New Hope Village or San Rafael may be limited to specific days or times during the week based on staff availability at those locations.
In Antigua, sponsorship visits typically last between one and two hours including transportation. When visiting a student at New Hope Village, please plan on a full day for your visit. Visits to San Rafael typically take a half-day for the visit and transportation.
Sponsors are allowed to bring one age appropriate book and one small game that the group can play during the visit. A sponsor can also choose to pre-order and bring a food basket.
If you are visiting a student who lives near Antigua or San Rafael, please meet your sponsored child’s social worker at our Family Development Center in Antigua at the time scheduled by our U.S. staff. The social worker will take you to meet your sponsored student. The Family Development Center is located on the south edge of Antigua. The address is Km 2, Carretera a San Juan, Antigua.
If you are visiting a student who lives near our New Hope site, Common Hope staff will meet you at a pre-arranged time and location in Guatemala City, such as your hotel, and bring you to meet your sponsored child. If you are staying in Antigua, we ask that you meet our staff at our Antigua Family Development Center and they will drive you to visit your sponsored child at our New Hope site. Please be aware that due to safety concerns, visits to New Hope may have to be cancelled on short notice. In these cases, we are typically able to have Sponsors talk with their student over video conferencing.
Visits most often take place at the homes of sponsored children. However, there are times when it is necessary for the visit to take place at Common Hope’s Family Development Center or at the child’s school. This may happen because of scheduling constraints, safety concerns, or for other reasons.
You are responsible for your own transportation to Antigua. Once you arrive in Antigua, we recommend taking a taxi to Common Hope/ Familias de Esperanza. The taxi will cost you about Q35-Q40, but you should negotiate the price before you enter the cab. You can have your hotel call a taxi for you or find one in the central park in Antigua. Ask the driver to go to El Proyecto Familias de Esperanza. Most taxi drivers in Antigua know where our Antigua site is.
Please note, it is VERY difficult to reschedule visits with less than one week advance notice. It may not be possible to reschedule a visit if it must be done on short notice.
- If you have not arrived in Guatemala yet, please contact Natalie in our U.S. Office at 651-917-1045 or Natalie at NatalieM@us.commonhope.org.
- If you are already in Guatemala, please contact Lys at our Antigua Family Development Center between the hours of 8:00am and 5:00pm. The telephone number is 7922-6600. Lys speaks English and Spanish. If you are scheduled to visit a child at San Rafael, please make sure to specify this with our staff.
If you would like to arrange a sponsorship visit or have questions, please contact Natalie at 651-917-1045 or NatalieM@us.commonhope.org. Thank you!
Write A Letter To Your Sponsored Student
We encourage you to get to know your student by sending brief letters, cards, or photos. Common Hope’s staff and volunteers will translate all correspondence between you and your sponsored child. If you speak Spanish and do not need translation assistance, please note this in the comments field in order to help us process your letters more efficiently.