“This is Jose, my child. I know I shall be killed when they capture Santander. Whoever reads this will they please take care of my son for me.”
John Langdon-Davies, British war journalist and founder of PLAN, found the above note on an orphaned boy in a railway station in Santander, Spain, which led to the founding of the organization we know today as PLAN.
It was the late 1930s, and the Spanish Civil War was raging. As many as 11,000 refugees passed through the station daily as they fled the ravages of war, most just children. As a result, Langdon-Davies, along with aid worker Eric Muggeridge, founded “Foster Parents Plan for Children in Spain,” providing shelter, food, and clothing to children impacted by the war. During World War II, the organization expanded their assistance to orphaned and injured children throughout Europe following the conflict.
Today, PLAN International reaches over 70 million children in 50 countries, fulfilling its 70 year plus mission to provide assistance to children and communities in the developing world through financial donations, community engagement, and ownership, creating long-term solutions for the problems affecting their lives. PLAN focuses on eight technical areas in their worldwide programs including education, economic security, water, sanitation and hygiene, health, sexual health (including HIV), protection, and child participation.
The projects Hobsons supports help communities provide educational opportunities to students who otherwise may not have them. Each school built, expanded, or repaired gives students a chance to take ownership of their future. Children and families are better able to plan for their futures due to the accessibility of education. In turn, community leaders use schools as a rallying point for continued development within a community.
At Hobsons, we believe that education advances and that it helps to create the world-changers of tomorrow. Through our partnership with PLAN, we are able to live these beliefs and promote education around the world.
Stay tuned for next week as we explore highlights from Hobsons’ 2014 PLAN trip to Vietnam.