How do I know that my Christmas gift will go to my child?

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I want to give my sponsee child a soccor ball and a pair of shoes for christmas, but I can't send these items directly. I also cannot send money directly to the child. If i send money to Compassion I am afraid my child will get a generic gift and not what i want for him. Also , by sending a Christmas present donation how can I be assured that it all will be spent on my child and not put into a general fund or used for administrative fees?
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andrew page

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Posted 7 years ago

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Becky, Champion

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Hi Andrew,

There is some information here in another support thread about Christmas gifts:

When you donate to CI, every donation gets 'tagged' [my word, not theirs] to where it is restricted. For instance, if you send a birthday gift, on your account it lists that gift as a birthday gift to your child (not family gift, not monthly support, not medical fund support etc.). CI's policy on gifts to sponsored children is that 100% of the gift goes to the sponsored child (or family if a family gift). CI has their audited financials available online and each project's funds are regularly audited also to ensure that money is spend in compliance with CI's policies.

More information on gift giving:
(FAQ as part of account):
CI blog:

CI financials-annual reports and audited financials for last 4 fiscal years:

My recommendation is that if you want to give your sponsored child a soccer ball and pair of shoes as a gift to give a gift amount you feel comfortable with as a general gift to your child and include in the additional instructions section that information. The project staff will get that information, but it is up to the child and child's family to decide what will best meet their needs as aided in identifying from the CI project staff (discussed in the CI blog link above). Your child's family may decide that food is the most pressing need and spend all of the money on that (my child's family has done that before on child gifts). Or, the family could choose to get a soccer ball and pants instead of shoes if pants are a more pressing need than shoes. Please realize that regardless of the gift amount that may not cover both items. The child's family choosing a different gift does not mean they are ignoring your suggestions, but simply that as we are not living with our sponsored kids, we do not always know their most pressing needs. Rest assured that your sponsored child will be happy with whatever is able to be purchased. Whether or not you decide to send a financial gift to your child, please consider writing a letter to your child either online (templates related to Christmas available) or on your own stationary.

Please feel free to post follow-up question(s) if you have any.
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Great Explanation!

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