To my friend with love

You stare longingly at the blank computer screen in front of you, wishing that some words would just magicly appear. You don’t know what to say to your newly sponsored child that will bless them and encourage their heart. Your mind feels as blank as that computer screen staring back at you.

 

You feel as though you know very little about this child from the profile you’ve been given . You know their hobbies, school grade and performance, a bit about their family and living situation and information about their community and country. Is that enough? Aditionally you wonder what this child would want to know about you.

 

We want to help you write your introduction letter. Below, we’ll give you some ideas of things you may want to include in your letter, along with a sample introduction letter at the end of this post.
Imagine you are meeting a new friend, and you’re going to carry on your first conversation. Instead of your friend being an adult, he/she is a child or teenager. Therefore, it is best to keep your sentences age-appropriate and remember to not include references to material posessions like your house, car, computer, ETC.

 

Introduction

 

First, you’d introduce yourself and tell your friend that you are very happy to be their new sponsor and/or friend. Then, you might share a bit about yourself including: age, birthday, state (not the city) where you live, career/school, hobbies, family (spouse, children, pets, ETC).

 

Questions

 

Now, it’s time to get to know your new friend a bit more by asking 2-3 age-appropriate questions.

Here are some questions to get your creative juices flowing:

1. What is your favorite subject in school?

2. What do you want to do for a career when you grow up/graduate from school? (Depending on the child’s age)

3. What is your favorite color?

4. What is your favorite Bible story?

5. Can you tell me more about your siblings?

 

You may even want to make one of your questions about their hobbies listed in their profile. Maybe they like soccer, baseball, basketball, art/drawing, reading, singing or playing a musical instrument. Here are some possible questions to ask about their hobbies:

1. Do you play (baseball, soccer, basketball, ETC) at Compassion with your friends?

2. What kinds of books do you like to read?

3. What kinds of pictures do you enjoy drawing?

4. What are some of your favorite songs you enjoy (singing, playing or listening to)?

 

Prayer Requests

 

After asking 2-3 questions, you can share 2-3 prayer requests you may have. Again, remember to keep these age-appropriate. I can promise you that your new sponsored child/friend will pray for your prayer requests, and I encourage you to do the same for them. You may even want to include some things you’re praying about for them like protection and safety for their family, that they will do well in their school studies and that they will know about Jesus and how much he loves them.

 

Closing

 

Close your letter by sharing a favorite Scripture, and tell your new friend how much both you and God love them. Let them know that you are very excited to build a beautiful friendship with them through letters. Some great Scriptures to include are:

Jeremiah 29:11,

John 3:16,

Proverbs 3:5-6,

1 Timothy 4:12.

 

Writing and sending your letter

 

Below is a sample introduction letter that you are more than welcome to modify and use to write to your sponsored child. You can write your sponsored child online by logging in to Compassion’s “My account section” and going to “Write my child.” You can upload up to 3 photos to attach to your letter as well, but know you will need to crop these photos to make them fit. Also, there is a 2000 character limit in the online writing form, so if your letter is longer you may choose to send it to the Compassion International headquarters in Colorado Springs via the regular postal service.
The address to send any child correspondence to Compassion International is:
Attn: Child Correspondence Dept.

Compassion International

Colorado Springs, CO 80997-0004

If you send your letter via snail mail, be sure that you label each item in your package including your letter and any photos or extra goodies you send with your sponsor number and your child’s number in order for your letter and all added extras to reach your child.

 

Sample Sponsor Introduction Letter

 

Dear (child’s first name),

We are Andy and Miranda, and we are so happy to be your new sponsors and friends! We are husband and wife, and we were married (mm/dd/yyyy.) Andy is (age) years old, and his birthday is (mm/dd). I (Miranda) am (age) years old, and my birthday is (mm/dd).

We live in the state of (place state here) in the (?) region of the United States. We do not yet have any children, but we have two cats named Black and Dusty.

 

For our work, (?).

Our hobbies are: (place hobbies here).

 

Questions for you:

1. What is your favorite Bible story?

2. Can you tell us more about your siblings?

3.

Prayer requests:

1.

2.

3.

 

(Child’s first name), we love you so very much, and we look forward to building a beautiful friendship with you! We are excitedly waiting for your first letter! God has great and marvelous plans for your life! Jeremiah 29:11 says: “For I know the plans I have for you declares the Lord; plans to prosper you and not to harm you; plans to give you a future and a hope.” Jesus has a bright and wonderful future planned out just for you, and you can find your hope in him and his perfect and unconditional love.

We say goodbye for now, but please know that we love you very much and we pray for you to do well in your school studies and for God to protect your family every day.

 

Love, Andy and Miranda

 

Some good pictures to send with this letter would be a picture of Andy and me and a picture of our two cats.

We hope this will help you to write your introduction letter to your sponsored child. You do not need to wait until you receive your child’s physical profile packet or first letter to write your introduction letter. We will write many more posts about the joys of letter writing, and we’d love to answer any questions you have!

Remember, your letters to your sponsored child are one of their most treasured possessions and they read them again and again for hope and encouragement. The words you write could change your child’s life forever!

 

“Thank you for choosing to sponsor me.”

Each of us make choices every day. Some of those choices are easy and some of those choices are more difficult. Some choices we make on our own, while others are made in response to something we’ve experienced. Choices can affect us or someone else either positively or negatively, and some choices are a matter of survival.

 

We love receiving letters from our Compassion children, and those precious first letters are no exception. These letters give us just a glimpse into our child’s world and heart. In every first letter we’ve received, this line has always stuck in my mind. “Thank you for choosing to sponsor me.”

 

We choose each child to be in our Compassion family for a specific reason. Better said, God chooses each child to be in our Compassion family for a specific reason. Whether it’s similar hobbies and interests, performance in school, similar educational and career paths or connections to others in that child’s country; the choice to sponsor each child has not only changed their lives, but our lives have been changed as well. They receive the tools and education to thrive amidst their impoverished circumstances, and we learn that the opposite of poverty is enough. They learn about the love of Jesus, and we grow closer to the heart of God through Scriptures and prayers they share with us. They’ve taught us how to live more simply and love more fully.

 

For many people living in poverty, the choices they make every day are a matter of life and death. Through child sponsorship, you can choose to help them make those choices. By sponsoring one child, that child and their family will know that someone cares enough to say, “I chose you.” The family can focus on financially caring for your sponsored child’s siblings while your sponsored child is cared for through Compassion. Sponsorship is much more than a monthly donation. It’s about building a beautiful relationship through letters with your sponsored child. When you get that first letter with the words “thank you for choosing to sponsor me”, your sponsored child is really saying, “Thank you for loving me. Thank you for showing me the love of Jesus Christ.”

 

We’ve been chosen by God to show his love to others. We’ve been chosen to care for the least of these. Will you choose to make an eternal difference in the life of a child today? There are children waiting to write the words, “Thank you for choosing to sponsor me.”

 

Watch as 9-year-old Karla thanks her sponsors for loving her through Compassion’s child sponsorship program!

Meet Compassion

What do you think of when you think of the word poverty?

Dictionary.com defines poverty as “little or no money, goods, or means of support; condition of being poor.” Poverty is so much more than this. Poverty is more than a lack of basic necessities.

 

 

Now that we’ve defined what poverty is, let’s talk about what we can do about it. We want to introduce you to a ministry close to our hearts, that is releasing children from poverty in Jesus’ name! Compassion International was started by American evangelist Rev. Everett Swanson in 1952 as a way to help Korean War orphans, and has since grown to releasing over 1.2 million children from spiritual, economic, social and physical poverty in 26 countries around the world. Compassion enables the children they support to become responsible, fulfilled Christian adults.

 

 

“Releasing children from poverty in Jesus’ name” is not a slogan. For Compassion, it is their God-given mission. Learn more about the ministry of Compassion International by going here.

 

There are 4 things that make Compassion’s ministry distinct.

 

Compassion is Christ-centered.

 

Jesus Christ is at the center of everything that Compassion does. God’s Word gives us multiple mandates to care for the poor, and children are very close to the heart of God.

Every child registered in Compassion’s child Development sponsorship program has the opportunity to hear the good news of salvation through Jesus Christ, and each child is given the opportunity to know and build a relationship with their creator. Each child is given a Bible, and these children take home what they learn in the Compassion program about Jesus and share the love of Christ with their families.

 

 

Compassion is child-focused.

 

Compassion believes in a holistic approach to individual child development. Each child registered in Compassion’s child development sponsorship program receives regular medical checkups and access to education through tutoring, school supplies, tuition assistance or uniforms. Children are taught social skills, health and hygiene practices and vocational training. Children are also given access to nutritious food while at the Compassion project. Each child is taught about the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ and given the opportunity to know and build a relationship with him. Children are also linked to a sponsor who has a one-on-one relationship with that child. As a sponsor, you have the unique opportunity to build a life-changing relationship with your sponsored child. By exchanging letters with your sponsored child, you have the ability to speak life into what otherwise may be a dark and desolate situation. You are able to plant seeds of hope in your sponsored child’s heart, and through your words of encouragement your child will know that both you and Jesus care about and love him/her very much. You may be the one person who tells your sponsored child “I love you.” As the sponsor of a Compassion child, you are the hands and feet of Jesus. For just over $1.00 a day, you can release a child from poverty!

 

 

Learn more about the benefits your Compassion-sponsored child receives for just $38.00 per month.

 

Compassion is church-based

 

Compassion International partners with the local church in your sponsored child’s community to provide culturally relevant age-specific ministry and care for each child involved in their program. A Compassion project, student center or child development center refers to the local church in that child’s community. The Christian adults in this church care very deeply for your sponsored child, and they want to see your sponsored child succeed. The church staff and volunteers make sure your sponsored child receives individual attention and that your child hears and knows of the love of Jesus Christ.  Each church partner is carefully selected by Compassion through a strategic process. Learn more about how Compassion partners with the local church and the church partner’s role and responsibilities.

 

Compassion is committed to integrity.

 

Compassion is committed to Biblical and financial integrity in everything they do. At least 80 percent of your $38.00 per month tax-deductible donation goes directly to care for your sponsored child, and Compassion acts in true honesty and humility with each aspect of their ministry. Learn more about Compassion’s commitment to financial integrity.

 

Along with child sponsorship, Compassion International has 3 other major programs that we’d like to tell you about.

 

CSP (Child Survival Program)

 

 

• 90 percent of child deaths worldwide occur within the first year of life.

• In developing countries, one in every six infants is not immunized against tuberculosis.

• Only 55 percent of the world’s infants are fully immunized against hepatitis B.

• Only 69 percent of newborns are protected against tetanus.

• Approximately 37 percent of deaths among children under 5 — 9.7 million worldwide in 2006 — occur in the first month of life.

• Each day, about 1,000 children worldwide become infected with HIV, the vast majority of them newborns.

• Although about 33 percent of HIV-positive pregnant women receive drug therapies to prevent the transmission of HIV to their infants, only 11 percent of HIV-positive women in sub-Saharan Africa who need antiretrovirals had access.

• Nearly 15 percent of babies in developing countries are born with a low birth weight compared with only 7 percent of babies in industrialized countries.

• In Sub-Saharan Africa 55 percent of children under 5 have never been registered; worldwide nearly 50 million children each year are not registered and begin life with no identity.

• Every day 1,500 women die from complications in pregnancy or childbirth that could have been prevented. Each day 10,000 newborns die within a month of birth, and daily the same number of babies are also born dead.

• Nearly 30 percent of women worldwide give birth before age 18.

• Some 200 million women who wish to space or limit their childbearing lack access to contraception.

 

Reading these statistics above, you may be thinking that this is a hopeless situation. There is hope for these mothers and infants. Compassion’s Child Survival Program provides pregnant mothers in poverty with prenatal care, and when their baby is born these mothers are taught how to properly care for their new little one. Along with basic child care skills, these mothers are taught income-generating skills, budgeting skills and about the love of Jesus Christ. Just as with the child sponsorship program, the Child Survival Program is run by the local church.

 

 

 

LDP (Leadership Development Program)

 

After graduating from Compassion’s Child Development Sponsorship Program, some young people have the opportunity to attend college and grow in Christian leadership and discipleship through Compassion’s Leadership Development Program. These young people are overcoming their circumstances to become doctors, lawyers, engineers, social workers, teachers, pastors and more. Through the Leadership Development Program, these young people are realizing the dreams that God has placed in their hearts, and they are learning to be all that God has created them to be. They are receiving training in Christian leadership and discipleship and being mentored by a Christian in their community.

 

 

CIV (Complementary Interventions)

 

Compassion’s core programs highlighted above are wide-reaching. However, they can not possibly meet every single need associated with a child’s healthy development. This is why Compassion has created their Complementary Interventions program to assist in meeting these needs when necessary. The CIV covers:

• HIV and AIDS Initiative

• Medical Assistance

• Malaria Intervention

• Curriculum Development

• Health & Parenting Skills

• Education & School Fees

• Assistance for Highly Vulnerable Children

• Disaster Relief

• Providing Clean Water

• Income Generation

• Infrastructure Development (repairs or rebuilding of homes or Compassion church partner buildings)

 

Compassion International is making a global impact in the Kingdom of God. From before a child’s birth until university education, many children’s lives have been changed forever. These children have been released from spiritual, economic, social and physical poverty. These young people are now making a difference and changing their world. Will you join them? Will you join us? Will you make an eternal difference in someone’s world today?