Thursday, April 7, 2011

Warming up for a Wonderful Weekend!

I am just filled with excitement! After months of waiting, the Northeast Regional Compassion International Advocates Retreat is right around the corner!

Last year’s conference was so incredible!  It was my first Compassion event and I learned so much.  As a newbie Advocate, I was given such a warm welcome in the group and I was put at ease immediately. (For someone who can feel somewhat shy and awkward in new situations, this was such a blessing!) We heard the testimony of a young man who grew up in Bolivia and he shared the many ways that the Compassion program helped him as a sponsored child. Miguel’s story has stuck with me in the last year and I often think of the powerful testimony he gave.

This year’s conference will be a little different. Friday evening will be open to anyone with an interest in Compassion. We’ll have fellowship and pizza and another young man speaking about his experience going through the Compassion program.

Because my passion is inspiring sponsors to write to their children, and because there will be quite a few sponsors there, I planned a little project.

I got out my stashed packs of colorful printer paper from the Dollar Tree and the Compassion envelopes that come with letters from our children. (Because I send our letters in manila envelopes,  I keep the ones Compassion sends for times such as this!)

I used a document program to make some Compassion stationary and printed off a ton of sheets. (You can find the stationary I created if you click here.)

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Then, I put together Correspondence Packs with three pieces of stationary, three envelopes and a business cards I made up with my blog address and contact information.

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I’ll put these packs on a table with display materials and a little sign that tells sponsors to help themselves.  I hope that it may encourage some people in their letter writing ministry to their children.

If you have a stash of pretty paper and some friends or family that sponsor, this might be a project you could do, too. I think that having paper and envelopes ready to go could help inspire sponsors to sit down share some love and encouragement with their Compassion child.

Saturday will be just for Advocates.  If it is anything like last year, we will learn more about Compassion, brainstorm ways to advocate for the children, network, pray laugh and cry together. I am really looking forward to this opportunity to spend time with others who share my passion and to learn more.  I’ll be sure to take some pictures and come back and blog about it next week!

I hope you have a great weekend!  What do you have planned?

~Michelle

10 comments:

StacyRomaine said...

Very cool idea, Shell! I am positive you will make it that much easier for many sponsors to just DO it and send that letter they have been meaning to... :) Have fun this weekend! (We're going CAMPING over to the National Forest and a bunch of backpacking and geocaching, whoohoo!)

Michelle ~ Blogging from the Boonies said...

Thanks, Sissy! I will have to bring some over to you next time we visit! If I get rid of some of my paper stash then I can rationalize buying some more! ;)

Jessica said...

Aww, that's so sweet!

I've seriously considered some kind of letter writing party at my church before.

Lana said...

That sounds like so much fun!!

I forgot to mention in my earlier post when I told you that 7 children were sponsored this past Sunday. I typed up a little information sheet of stuff they can send and other info they might need. I referenced your blog since I have got so many great ideas from it!

Jill Foley said...

Great idea, Michelle!

I made correspondence packs as Christmas gifts for my mom and some friends. I included a year's worth of letter writing pages. It was fun to make and appreciated by the recipients.

Let's see...this weekend. Well I'm on vacation right now, visitng my family. So we'll be flying back home on Sunday. Next weekend my regional manager will be in our area so I'll be meeting with him and other advocates.

Cheri said...

Great Idea Michelle. We just had a letter writing party as part of our Compassion Sunday at our church. We invited people who were not sponsors to draw and create messages for those of us who do sponsor to include in our letters. We have a stack of neat things to include with some of our letter now. I so want to get together with our Advocates. I just love when they do this. I missed our meeting last year as it happened the same time I was in Honduras on a Compassion trip. So I was blessed either way.
Jill say hi to Rick! I think he is your regional manager now??? If he is and you haven't met him before you will like him.
Great blog

Wender said...

Have a great time this weekend! And thank you for all the wonderful ideas and encouragement you share with us all!

Blessings!
Wendy

faithlikemustard said...

I love these ideas for a letter writing party! I'd really like to get some of our chilren's groups @ church involved.

JD said...

It's yet another example of the impact you're making on the Compassion program, for the sponsors, the kids, and for Compassion... I love your heart!!

I dreamt over and over and over again last night that you were going to Ghana, it's in my heart non-stop -- girl, you are SO going!! In the dream, Shaun Groves called you and said "So, I need a Compassion Blogger in Ghana..." I love those kinds of dreams! :D

Going to try to take a maple syrup spout/bucket pic today for the Compassion kids after my run, will let you know how it goes!

Doing my first 10K (solo), so that I can get a base time and start working on pacing. Pray for me, I need to increase my motivation/strength/energy as I build up to the 1/2 marathon in October. Will be using the races as fundraisers for Ghana as well. Speaking of Ghana, I will help you with your fundraiser for YOUR trip to Ghana, have I mentioned that you're going?

Familiar Little Frog said...

I just had my first-ever letter-writing party. One whole family came!
But, a friend who is an awesome crafter showed us how to make neat little booklets out of paper lunch bags--with secret messages. They're so fun! Pictures here: http://familiar-little-frog.blogspot.com/

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