Thank you to everyone that got involved with Carve A Heart this October! The campaign was a big success and we were overwhelmed by all of your support and your brilliant pumpkins.
Your donations make a huge difference to the lives of many children living in fear around the world.
Thank you to everyone who shared their pumpkin photos with us on Facebook, view these fantastic creations as well as photos of the journey our very special pumpkin carriage made around the UK in our Carve A Heart Facebook Album »
Carve a Heart
This Halloween – and every night – millions of children face a night of fear. It isn't fun or exciting and it isn't a choice for one night. 31 October is simply another night of facing hardship, loneliness, abuse, hunger or conflict.
World Vision is in the world’s hardest places tonight and every night. Right now, we are comforting children as they wake from nightmares of abuse, helping girls and boys forced into marriage or hard labour and protecting children fleeing bombs and disasters.
By carving a heart in your pumpkin and texting HEART to 70060 to donate £5 you will be showing you care and help us to bring hope to even more children.
Children like Srey**, Abishek, Harriet and Sara** Read their stories »
Turn a night of fear into a night of hope
Fear of AbuseSrey** 17, Cambodia
"I didn't know if the men would hurt me. I was totally scared I felt so much shame."Read more
“I felt so much pain. I imagined people counting cash in front of my eyes. I felt so much shame.”
When Srey** was 17 her father became gravely ill and spent two days in a coma. Her family went to a loan shark to pay for his medical care, but were unable to meet the repayments. With her family situation worsening, Srey** felt she had no option but to take up the offer of work in Phnom Penh, as a commercial sex worker.
“We got a call for a service in my first day... I was totally scared. I feared what it would take to do it... I was scared of the interest of my mother’s loan. That’s the fear I felt at that time.”
When the police visited her workplace, Srey** was taken to a World Vision home for girls who have been exploited and abused. There, girls are offered counselling, friendship, support from safe adults and training in new skills.
“I have no doubt why the men and women at the centre are called mothers and fathers. I know that they care. I will use the skills [learnt in the centre] to earn a living and not do the same thing again.” Full story »
**Srey’s name has been changed to protect her identity and dignity
Fear of DisasterAbishek 6, Nepal
"I fear the earthquake. I am scared at night. I feel the earthquake will come again and we will die."Read more
"I fear the earthquake. I am scared at night. I feel the earthquake will come again and we will die."
Abishek was at home with his family when April’s earthquake hit. The house started to collapse as he ran out, and he sustained a head injury. Abishek lost not only his home, but also his grandmother.
"The building started shaking. While I was running, I fell down and the stone from the walls of the house fell on my head and hit me. My head got hurt and it started bleeding. It was hurting a lot but I am a brave boy, I didn’t cry.
"I love my grandmother very much. She cared for me. Now we don’t have a house. We live in an open area."
Now the family are living in a makeshift camp. Abishek’s greatest wish is for his school to be rebuilt and reopened. Abishek’s family has received practical help from World Vision; shelter kits, household kits and hygiene kits.
World Vision is also providing safe places - Child Friendly Spaces - where children can play and learn and has been delivering supplies, including water purification tablets and shelter equipment to some of the most remote areas. Full story »Read less
Fear of diseaseHarriet 10, Zambia
"I used to feel stomach pains. The water had small worms in it. Sometimes we used to find dead rats."Read more
"I used to feel stomach pains. The water had small worms in it. Sometimes we used to find dead rats."
Harriet, 10, from Zambia, has grown up with stomach pains and the constant threat of diarrhoea. The community used to drink water contaminated by worms and dead animals. Children had to seek medical help regularly and at one time both Harriet and her twin, Lewis were gravely ill from diarrhoea.
"Imagine we had to sieve the water at times when the water used to have a lot of tiny worms floating on the water. We could still drink the water even after fishing out dead lizards, frogs and other small animal that used die in there."
"I used to feel stomach pains and have diarrhoea because of drinking that water. Now I don’t suffer stomach pains and diarrhoea. I am alright."
World Vision has now provided a borehole, providing the community with clean, safe water.
"My happiest day was when the machine came to drill that borehole." Full story »Read less
Fear of WarSara** 14, Syria
"Before the war started, nothing worried me. Everything was okay."Read more
"Before the war started, nothing worried me. Everything was okay."
Life in Syria was good for Sara**, her parents and her siblings. She fondly remembers playing with her father in their beautiful home. Then everything changed.
"One day, armed men came. I would be sleeping and I’d wake up from the bombing, shooting, fighting and people dying. They bombed our houses. It was horrible... I feared for my life."
The following is upsetting. That it is told by a 14-year-old is truly awful.
"My dad was kidnapped… They ran over him and then they shot him and then burned him."
After that the family ran. Now living in a tent in Lebanon with her extended family, Sara** has only a watch and a photo album to remember happier times.
But at least she has a chance now. A generation of Syrian children are growing up surrounded by conflict and uncertainty. In the midst of this they need moments of stability and hope for the future. When Sara** attends lessons in the camp she sees a chance for herself.
"I love English and mathematics. I love to learn because I want to be a judge when I'm older." Full story »
**Sara’s name has been changed to protect her identity and dignityRead less
latest from the blog
Harriet has had to overcome many challenges throughout her life due to the lack of clean drinking water. Living in Zambia, she has had limited access to water for drinking and bathing until recently, when World Vision drilled a water borehole that has become a lifeline for Harriet and her local community.
Hot on the trail of our Carve a Heart pumpkin carriage, PR Natalie blogs about the journey as she travels around the country this week. She's urging Britons to carve a heart in their pumpkins this year, and turn a night of fear into a night of hope.
Six-year-old Abishek was severely affected by the Nepal earthquake that devastated his home district of Sindupalchowk back in April of this year. Hundreds of schools were damaged beyond repair and many children, including Abishek, were out of education for the months that followed.
How to carve the perfect pumpkin
If you're feeling adventurous, why not take a look at our beautiful heart stencils and create a true work of art which will adorn your home this Halloween, as well as show your support for children living in fear.
Wondering what to do with your leftover pumpkin? We hate waste especially when there's an alternative.
Host a Carve A Heart Party
Our step by step guide to the perfect Carve a Heart party will ensure you and your friends have something to look forward to this Halloween, while also supporting the work of World Vision.
Download and share the #carveaheart images with family and friends
Help us reach even more children by sharing Carve A Heart (using the icons below)
*This is a charity donation service for World Vision UK. Texts cost £5 plus your standard network rate message. World Vision will receive 100% of your donation. If you have a question about your payment call 0203 287 7863. If you would prefer we didn't contact you again in future, text NOCOMMS WORLD VISION to 70060. Charity no England and Wales (no 285908).
**Srey's name has been changed to protect her identity.