I just received a new photo of my "boy" and he is in a dress and wearing a headband?

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My one and only original photo of my boy looks photoshopped, and when I just received a new one for the first time, "he" is in a dress and wearing a headband and looks like a little girl. This makes me nervous that something is not right.
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Sarah K

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Posted 4 years ago

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KristenH, Champion

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Sarah, it sounds like there was a mix up! Someone from Compassion should be able to help after the weekend but my guess is that your child's photo got mixed up when they were being updated! It can happen with so many pictures being updated at once :)
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Hi Sarah! I'm so sorry that we sent you the wrong updated picture of Germaine! I took a look at the updated photo you received and it is definitely a girl. I actually found the little lady that this new photo belongs to! Her name is Rokiata Kekele Rokia (beautiful name!), and she has an almost identical child number to your boy which explains the mix-up. The only number that's different is that Germain's is a 6 and hers is a 9! It must have been transposed by accident when they sent the new picture of your boy to our system. 

Again, I certainly apologize for this mistake and I'm sending an inquiry to our office in Burkina Faso to request the correct updated picture of your boy be sent to us. Also, a few of my co-workers and myself, reviewed your boys picture and we believe it is actually him and not photo shopped. It can be hard to tell sometimes with the lighting but we'll send you his new photo when our staff responds to my inquiry and you can verify for yourself to be sure! :) 

Thanks for bringing this to our attention so that we can correct it for you! 
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Sarah K

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I'm sorry, but I would like to please cancel all 3 of my sponsorships. Something just isn't sitting right with me and I no longer have peace about continuing with them. Thank you for getting back with me. God bless.
Sincerely, Sarah
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Sarah, Official Rep

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Hi Sarah. I am so sorry that this situation has caused you to lose faith in our organization. I have removed all three children from your account and placed them up for sponsorship again. No more donations will be withdrawn from your account.
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tanya lewis

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Sarah I don't work for compassion I personally sponsor but I lived in Colorado for a while and knew some one who worked there. It is an amazing program and I am extremely sorry they messed up your picture but please take time o pray and seek about canceling. I read the responses and they did their work and found out exactly what happened with your picture. Think of how many children are sponsored and how many letters go back and forth but more importantly think of the issues each child and country face. A mix up of a picture is bound to happen. But as for compassion being corrupt I highly highly highly doubt it. So please for the children you sponsor take time to pray and seek about canceling
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I visited BF not that long ago to meet my kids.  The Compassion program in BF has 45,000+ children enrolled! I would expect a few mistakes to be made, as some of the centers don't even have electricity, and they keep very detailed manual records on a few hundred kids.  They are doing great things there.  Literacy rates in the country are very low (I've seen numbers in the range of 20-30%) so being able to go to school is a huge help in itself! The quality of teaching I saw rivaled anything you'd see in the U.S. (their program volunteers required qualifications).  It is a part of the world with oral vs. written traditions, so there may be some differences in paperwork, but I think you see numbers getting mixed up anywhere.  I have never been in a place where the people had so little, yet the Compassion-assisted churches were doing a lot with the resources that they had.

You obviously have the right to do what you want with your money, but an organization this large simply doesn't have the ability to go under the radar.  Check out Charity Navigator and the Wydick study.  The latter was a study independent of Compassion where they followed up with kids who had been in the program, and found a difference in them compared with their peers.

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