Thursday, January 29, 2015

Double the Fun!


Have you ever wondered how you could double your influence through Compassion? Well, I might just have the answer for you! Compassion International's website has so many children waiting for sponsors that sometimes you can find twins that need sponsors. Rosalie, my sponsored child in the Philippines, has a twin sister also sponsored through Compassion and I can imagine that is a huge blessing for her family. Tonight I want to introduce you to six pairs of twins around the world. Their families all live in extreme poverty and they are in need of the support and encouragement of a sponsor through Compassion.

Here's how it's going to work. I'll introduce you to both siblings and tell you what interests they have in common and what differences they have between them. If you want to view their full profiles on compassion.com, click on their names. Here we go!


First up are Juan and Carlos. They are 4 years old and live in El Salvador with their father and mother. They have all the same favourite activities: soccer, playing with cars, and running. They must be very similar! Although I think Carlos is a little more attached to his mom than Juan is :)


Next is Irene and Irena. They are 6 years old and live in Togo with their father, mother and one other sibling. They both have average marks in school and enjoy playing with dolls and running. Irene also likes singing. Irena likes listening to music.


Next I would like to introduce you to twin sisters Syombua and Nzangi from Kenya. They are 5 years old and live with their father and mother and one other sibling. Cleaning the kitchen is their household chore and they both love to play with their friends!


Next up are twin brothers from Bangladesh, Durjoy and Dhiresh. They are 5 years old and live with their father and mother. They both enjoy soccer and running. 


Next up are the lovely Akoete and Akoele from Togo. They are brother and sister and are 6 years old. They live with their mother. They attend kindergarten where their performances are average, and they like to play group games. Akoete likes to play soccer and Akoele likes to play with dolls. 


And last, but certainly not least, twin sisters Akor and Akweley from Ghana! They are 4 years old and live with their father and mother and three other siblings. They both run errands as a household chore and Akor also helps in the kitchen. They both enjoy playing with dolls and playing group games. 

Many of these children have been waiting over 300 days for a sponsor. If you've ever wanted to sponsor twins through Compassion, now might be your chance! Why not double the fun and double the influence you can make in their lives and the lives of their families?

Friday, January 9, 2015

Project Focus: EC-438


Hi everyone! Today I want to tell you about a project in Ecuador that I had the privilege of visiting in 2013. This project is very special to me, and you will soon find out why :)

This Compassion Project is EC-438. It is very close to Otavalo, where I spent a majority of my time in Ecuador. It is an older Compassion project, as it has been running since August 1987! I got to meet the pastor in charge of this project as well as some other wonderful volunteers who keep this project going.

The pastor of this project is the person who has been writing the update letters I've received for this project over the past two years. He says that 90% of children and parents in Compassion's program there have come to know Jesus as their Lord. That is pretty exciting! He dreams of building a Christian school in his community, because right now the children have to go into Otavalo to go to school, which is quite a distance away for them.

I'll give you a photo tour of Sinai Student Center, from pictures I took the day I visited:



First of all, this project has an amazing soccer field! Overall it was one of the nicest-looking projects I visited, but I was especially impressed by this. I'm sure the kids as well as the wider community get lots of use out of it! I was slightly disappointed that we didn't have a soccer game with the kids while I was there.




They've got a great playground area that the kids enjoy spending time in!


And stairs.


Lots of stairs!


This is the church at the project. 


Sinai Student Center offers special training for the kids who come there, teaching them important skills such as sewing, gardening, and baking.


This is where the kids eat their meals at the project. I got to eat there too--we even got to try some freshly baked buns from the baking workshop!




These kids love playing games! They are put into teams and then play relay-race type games together. My group and I even participated in a couple of games, including the blindfold one. It was pretty crazy!


If you haven't figured it out yet, the main reason EC-438 is special to me is because that's where my sponsored child Blanca attends! I sponsored her when she was 7, and she will be turning 10 this year. She was so happy to meet me and gave me a great tour of her project!

But I also wanted to highlight this amazing project today because there are two little girls like Blanca who attend EC-438 who are waiting for loving sponsors. I recognized the background of their pictures right away because that's where Blanca and I were playing tag the day I met her.


First up is Erika. She is 6 years old and her birthday is September 5. She lives with her father and mother and there are 6 children in her family. She is in primary school where her performance is above average (go, Erika!). For fun she likes to play with dolls and jump rope. Click here to see Erika's full profile on Compassion.com. 


This is Kelsha. She is 8 years old, turning 9 this year. One year younger than Blanca. They might even be friends! She lives with her father and mother and there are 4 children in the family. Her performance in school is also above average! For fun she likes to play with dolls and play ball games. Click here to see Kelsha's full profile on Compassion.com. 

Please consider adding one of these sweet girls to your Compassion family. I know they will love you and be so excited to hear from you! Blanca writes to me regularly and draws beautiful pictures. These girls need the encouragement of a faithful sponsor, to let them know that poverty cannot control them and show them the hope they can have in Jesus. 

Please join the pastor of EC-438 in praying for the Project:

"Let all who are in the program and continue entering it know the Lord and become true Christians, responsible, who can do community outreach to those who are unfamiliar with the truth of God. Please pray for the welfare of children and their parents. Also pray that all parents come to know Jesus as Lord and Savior of their lives."


Thursday, January 1, 2015

Stereotypical New Year's Post

Since everyone else is reflecting on the past year on Facebook, Twitter, etc I thought I may as well join. But my reflections will be focused on my Compassion Family and how it has grown and changed over the past year.

This was my Compassion Family at the start of 2014:


I had two sponsored children, was the correspondent to my parents' sponsored child, and had two other correspondents of my own. I celebrated the one-year anniversary of meeting Blanca in Ecuador. And then, very early on into the year, things began to change.

I lost Antonela, my dear correspondent from Bolivia. Her financial sponsor was no longer able to support her, so she needed a new sponsor and I could not provide financially for her at the time. I still miss her letters--she wrote every couple of months! But I hope and pray that she has a new sponsor now who will write to her and support her faithfully.

Misgana's picture updated this year. She is now 15 years old, and growing into a beautiful young woman! My friend and I who sponsor her only hear from her a couple times a year, but her letters have recently become more affectionate and she has expressed that she wants to meet us someday. We want to meet her too! She has also been doing better in school and I am very proud of her.





Blanca's picture updated this year too. With her updated information I learned that her performance in school is now above average! I am so proud of her. It just goes to show what an incredible impact encouragement through sponsorship can have for a child--even after only one year! Blanca also started writing letters in her own words rather than the form letters kids from 3-8 years old usually fill out for their sponsors. And she has drawn some lovely pictures on the back of her letters. I have one in a frame in my room!




Saymen's picture updated too. He is now 8 years old. Until recently he was my youngest correspondent. I don't hear from him much, but when I do it's quite clear that he really enjoys the letters and stickers I've sent him! He seems to be doing alright in school as well.







My dear friend Priyanka turned 19 years old near the end of the year, right around the time she left Compassion's program. She left for a very good reason--her family is now self-sufficient and is no longer in need of Compassion's support! I am excited for her, but I will definitely miss her letters.






I also gained some new additions to my Compassion Family in 2014:

In February, Rosalie's smile captured my heart. By early March she was my newest Compassion sponsored child! I have already received many sweet letters from her, written by her mom. I am looking forward to getting to know her better this year.







This is Jose. He is one of my newest correspondent kids. He is 12 years old and lives in Peru with his family. I have not received a letter from him yet, but I hope I will soon! His information says he enjoys art so I'm hoping he might include some drawings in his letters.







I was also blessed by a fellow sponsor with the opportunity to become Edison's correspondent. I met him and his sisters when I visited Ecuador in 2013! I'm hoping I will receive a letter from him soon.








And last, but not least, my family welcomed Kaveri as our newest sponsored child right before Christmas. As with Priyanka, I will be Kaveri's correspondent as my mom does not feel very confident writing letters. I hope that we will have many years to write and get to know each other! Kaveri is 5, turning 6 this year.






I'm looking forward to seeing how God will grow my Compassion Family in 2015!