letters from my sponsored child

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I received a first letter from my sponsored child about two weeks after I sponsored her, but it says that she is four years old while online it says she has been 5 since May and I sponsored her in June. I assume that this letter was written sometime after she was signed up for the program, but before I sponsored her...? Will I receive another letter from her that she wrote after she heard that I had sponsored her? or will I not get another one until I receive a response to the letter I sent her?

Thanks!
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Lindsee

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Posted 5 years ago

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Lindsay

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Hi, Lindsee! Yes, that letter you received was more than likely the kids introductory letter that they wrote (or had written) upon entering the program, prior to your sponsoring her. You'll receive other letters within something like 4 months that are actually written to you specifically.
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Emily

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Hi Lindsee! I am so glad to hear that you received your first letter from sweet Johana! I am so sorry for any confusion this first letter may have caused and I will certainly try to clarify this for you! :) It is exciting becoming a sponsor and we want to be able to start the relationship with your child right away! Normally, letters take 2-3 months to be delivered both ways. But the introductory letter that you receive from your child, is a pre written letter that had been prepared by your child and staff members from her project, to be ready for mailing as soon as she got word that she had a new sponsor! :) Because of this, when it was sent out, this detail may have been overlooked and not changed on the letter before being mailed to you. Please accept my apologies for this mistake and I want to encourage you, our records indicate that her birthday is May 21, 2009 and she has just turned 5 years old.

I see that we received a letter from you on June 21, 2014. You can expect to receive a response to this letter before the end of the year. You are welcome to write as often as you would like. Our children respond directly to their sponsor's letters, every sixty days. This process is known as reciprocal letter writing and creates a much more meaningful correspondence as you each respond to one another's letters. When I sponsored my child, the letters came slowly at first but once I started writing each month to my little girl, I began receiving letters very frequently and built a wonderful relationship with her. I love watching Dina grow and I pray you have the same experience with Johana! 
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Deci Arce

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I don't understand why the school's can not build this into their curriculum to write a letter to their sponsors on a regular basis.  I would help with their writing, their grammar, and make the sponsors feel more in touch their child.  From a new sponsor, I almost feel like it isn't appreciated as much as what I thought it would be.  
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Abby Medford

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Deci please keep in mind that many of the areas where Compassion works are so remote that it probably takes weeks, maybe months for your letters to reach your sponsored child. Even with our sponsorships, I'm sure that resources - including the resource of time - are still severely limited, and I am completely confident that Compassion's workers are absolutely doing the best they can in each of their centers to encourage these children, teach them about God, and show them the love of Christ. Although I completely understand that frequent letters from your sponsored child would be wonderful, it just simply may not be logistically possible and I would hate to see you get discouraged and upset over this.  Remember that one of the primary goals of Compassion is for YOU to encourage the child!  Praying you experience the fullness of His joy through your sponsorship! God Bless you in this new year!
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William Blair

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Hi Deci.Many of the partner churches have from 140 to 600+ children in each project.Like the ones my sponsor kids go to in Nicaragua,400 at one and 600 at the other.I've been to both.Changes are being made to make the letter writing process go more smoothly and we will receive letters more often.Just keep writing your letters and they will respond.Letter writing isn't usually part of the culture in most countries.This is a new thing for the kids.This is where they learn to express themselves and communicate with others.They definitely want to get to know you as much as possible.Don't be surprised when they ask you to visit them.Please consider doing this.It's worth the cost and the experience of being in their world.
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Athena

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Is is appreciated! You can go to the Compassion blog and see all the posts about the difference the letters make to the child.

But yes, waiting for a response is hard. But the good news is soon letters from your child will start coming and since you'e been regurally writing to your child, you should get regular letters back. It may only be once every 2 months that they write (hopefully more), but the letters will come. Patience is hard. I think this initial time is the hardest when you write, wait for the delivery, wait for them to write back, and then wait for the return delivery. But I think about the little girl that I sponsor and how she waited 319 days for a sponsor. Surely I can wait the 4-6 months to get a letter from her, which is only half the time that she had to wait for me to come along.

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Hannah Anderson

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Hi Deci. It's also important to note that your sponsored kids are not in a school by Compassion. They attend a Child Development Center (or CDC). It is similar to an after-school program here in the United States. I do not know where your sponsored children are from, but I can tell you that Central and South American culture is very expressive in verbal language, not necessarily written. I can also tell you that for kids all over the world, writing adults can feel strange and foreign. (At least it was for me as a child, writing thank you notes.) 
Compassion has a reciprocal writing period that is now mandatory for all projects. If you don't write, you should expect letters 2 times a year. If you do, you should be receiving a reply every 60 days within the writing period. Some kids live in remote places though, and communication can take longer. I recommend looking at where your child lives and researching it a bit. Google Images has always shown me quite a bit on the area. If you do not hear from your child for a period of 6 months, please inquire to Compassion about your situation. Often times a project needs reminding of the guidelines, or there is something specifically wrong with your child. 
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Megan Michael

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Hi! I've been sponsoring my little boy for 6 months and have not received anything. If an introductory letter is sent once sponsorship begins, should I be concerned I was not sent one? What about the letter you say is sent every 60 days? I have seen on other parts of the website that you should only expect to hear from the child twice of year, so I am confused by this post. Even so, accepting I may only hear from him twice a year, the 6 month mark is upon us and am worried...
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Teresa Dawn

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Megan, yes call and ask about an introductory letter after 6 months and they'll double check that one is on the way for you.

As for 2x per year, that is what is expected if you do NOT write to your child at all.

There are letter writing days every 60 days and children who DID receive at least one letter from their sponsor within that 60 day period will write at that point.  So if you write to your child every month or two, you can expect a letter every 60 days in return (approx. and after a bit of a wait the first time as it takes time for your letter to reach that child.  I aim for writing to my kids once-twice a month)  But if you haven't written, the child has nothing to reply to and just writes the general letter 2x per year.  Letters mean SOOOOOO much to the kids and it's hard for children to write over and over again with no reply, which is why they do not write as often if they are not receiving letters themselves. 
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Emily

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Hello Megan! I am very sorry for any concern that this situation has brought to you. You are correct that you should receive an introductory letter from your child within 4 months of beginning your sponsorship. All letters back and forth between you and your child after the introduction letter, take 2-3 months to be delivered both ways. If you write to your child often, you can expect to receive up to 6 letters each year! I believe I was able to locate your account although it does have a different email address and so I want to verify I am looking at the correct information. Are you currently sponsoring Jonatan Pierre in Haiti? If so, thank you so much for writing to him 3 times already! If this is not your account, please provide your boy's ID number and I will look up your account.

If this is in fact your child, our records indicate that an introduction letter was mailed to you from Jonatan back in April during your first month of sponsorship. I am so very sorry that this letter did not reach you and I want to make sure we resolve this for you. I am wondering if the address we have on file for you is incorrect or has a small error. Have you moved recently? I would encourage you to verify this information by going to your My Account on www.compassion.com to ensure it is correct. Make sure that any apartment numbers and box numbers are accurate and included with the street address. You may also call our office at (800) 336-7676 to confirm this information also. If your address is correct, please let me know and I will ask that another letter be sent to you. 

Thank you for your patience! I know you have been anxiously awaiting a letter so that you can begin building a relationship with your sweet boy and I assure you we will figure out what is wrong and make sure your boys letters are reaching you :). 
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Megan Michael

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Thank you, Emily! I would love if Compassion could check on the status of communication with Jonatan. When we first started 6 months ago we were excited to be paying out of our own pocket to sponsor someone, happy to pay extra for a birthday gift, and eager to write letters, send pictures, etc. but without hearing from him we're starting to feel... differently. Today we're suppose to be donating extra for Christmas but the relationship feels imaginary. I don't even know what he did with his Birthday money...
My email address was not entered correctly but obviously Compassion has my home address seeing as I certainly get their requests for extra donations. I really don't understand why that was suggested. I have never received a letter from Jonatan, although once we did receive a typed letter from his pastor or maybe a Compassion rep there that knew him? I can't find it now but I remember it feeling really generic and vague. If there was some way someone could get involve with this, I would really appreciate it! Thank you!
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Susan

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Oh, Megan, I am so sorry that you have been waiting so long to hear from Jonatan! :( It sounds like you are feeling discouraged and I can understand that. Even if you had received the letter sent in April, it has been six months! The children are required to send letters every two to six months to their sponsors. You have been such a wonderful letter writer sending regular encouraging letters to Jonatan! Thank you so much and please know that these letters do make a huge difference in your child's life!

I just sent an inquiry to our field office in Haiti to check on how Jonatan is doing and ask that he writes another letter as soon as possible. I will keep you updated on what we find out. Please don't feel obligated to donate towards Christmas (he will receive a gift through our Christmas Gift Program). 
(Edited)
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Susan

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Megan, we received two letters from Jonatan and are sending them to you in the mail. I hope that you receive them very soon! 
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Mellanie McCreary

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Megan, yes, I'd call the Compassion phone number and explain the situation to them. That isn't normal... the first letter, which the child prepares before they know who their sponsor is going to be, usually comes really fast. After that, it can be a long wait until the rhythm of letters between the two of you gets going, but once it does, things pick up and get regular. I'd call them, their people are really helpful.

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