One of the things I love best about our involvement with Compassion International is the ability to be able to correspond with the children we sponsor. We are able to send letters of love and encouragement along with extra goodies, and bring some joy to these children. One of the things that Compassion staff tries to encourage is frequent and faithful letter writing. There are many children in the program who never or rarely hear from their sponsors and most are devastated about this.
Our family is dedicated to sending each of our 6 children at least two letters via snail mail every month. I also email our children when we get a letter from them, to answer any questions they may have. Every other week, I sit down with the binder of letters that have been sent to us, some stationary and devote an hour or so to writing letters and making bundles to send our kids. Generally, each child receives a personalized letter from us. I may also print off a Word document with some recent pictures of our family with captions. I gather up some coloring sheets or stickers or other flat goodies to send. Each item gets labeled with our sponsor number, as well as the child’s name and number. Here is a photo of our most recent group of letters right before I slipped everything in a large manilla envelope and mailed it to the Compassion center in Colorado.
I use a paperclip to keep the items for each child separate. For our newest child, Bertille in Burkina Faso, I ordered a photo collage from Walgreens.com with pictures of our family. Our other Compassion sponsor children have already gotten something similar.
Writing frequently helps to encourage a relationship between us and the child. We don’t hear from some of our children very often, some Compassion projects just have a Letter Writing day 4 times a year. But some of the projects write back as often as they hear from us, so we still receive a fair amount of letters. It is important to realize, as much as WE love to receive letters from our children, we aren’t doing this for US. The focus should be about the children, and ministering and encouraging them as much as possible. It is easy to find myself feeling closer to Precious from Ghana, when we get 2 or 3 letters from her a month. I know, though, that our role is just as important to Yishak in Ethiopia, even though we hear from him a few times a year and his letters are short and lack much detail. So, we write to them all faithfully and pray that our letters bring them joy and a sense that we love them.