Petition to have more CONTROL!

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  • Updated 2 years ago
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please someone help me out. I do not want to cancel my sponsorship because I feel if my child is TRULY receiving my payments, he will suffer of I stop. I want to see pictures of him with the things I bought him. Please is there anyone else going through this? I stop sending money because he sent a letter that was SOO irrelevant that it seems as if he never seen my last. He did it TWICE!! He is old enough to reply a relevant answer! Where is the staff? Why would they let these children answer irrelevant responses?? Please comment! I will not send another penny til I know he is actually getting my stuff and my letters.
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Safiro Rosa

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  • Hurt

Posted 2 years ago

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heather o

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Safiro, I am another sponsor and I can assure you your child is getting everything you send him. Our kiddos often don't know how to express themselves in letters. They are often well behind education wise compared to kids in the U.S. so they are not on a level we expect them to be. You should receive a thank you letter about 6 month after gifts and depending on the amount ($60 or greater) you will get a photo. I sponsor several children and correspond with many more and there are vast difference in how my children express themselves and at what age they write for themselves. I have a 6 year old in the Philippines that writes short sweet letters herself and a 14 year old in Haiti that still doesn't write for himself and all sorts of levels in between. It takes a while for children to get comfortable writing, I have found that
especially true if they have had several sponsors come and go. It can take over a year to get letters flowing regularly and a relationship started. My advice write often and let them The awesome people who monitor this forum will look into for you. Blessings!
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heather o

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No one is sweet talking or portraying these children as ignorant. They are very smart but face many more challenges than their first world counterparts. We do have to accept culture differences, personality differences, and educational lag and sometimes lack of in underdeveloped countries. I have children whom write very well and write long detailed letters and others who do not and they are either the same age or older than my best writers. There are several hundred children in each project so often parents or other family members help with writing too. Many of these cultures value spoken communication over written so therefore letter writing is a bit foreign to everyone, the children, the project volunteers, and parents and family. This can intimidate them until they they have been writing a while. There are 50+ kiddos in my family's Compassion family my post was meant to share what we have discovered in our years with Compassion. WE KNOW OUR CHILDREN ARE BRIGHT AND WE TELL THEM IN EVERY LETTER.
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Susan, Sponsor and Donor Relations, Social Media

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Safiro, 

I am so sorry for the hurt, frustration, and powerlessness you were made to feel. I also want to sincerely apologize that you were given incorrect information when you had called. You absolutely should be getting photos. I regrettably do not have any record that you called. Do you know who you spoke with?  

We greatly appreciate your partnership and everything that you are doing for this precious young man as a sponsor. I look forward to working hard to earn back your trust and help you to build a good relationship with your sponsored child. 

You say in the title of this post that you want more control over the sponsorship. I want to work with you here. Would you please explain a little further what you mean when you say you would like to have more control over  your sponsorship? Once I know what you are wanting to see, I can then work with you within the confines of what Compassion does.

If I am understanding you correctly, it sounds like what you are really wanting is more photos of your child and letters from your child that answer your questions. As Heather mentioned, we process full child updates every two years and then photos with thank you letters for gifts of $60 or more. Antonio's last update photo was taken in October 2016. This means that you should have received two photo updates since you started sponsoring. Please let me know if you need copies of any of these photos and I would be happy to get you prints in the mail (of current photos) or jpegs via email (of any of his photos). 

I reviewed every single letter that Antonio has sent to you over the last year and a half. It looks like his first letter was written on the younger children's stationary with general information about his life. We designed the younger children's stationary for children ages 8 and under. At about nine years old, children transition to writing on their own on the older kids stationary. This typically happens gradually as they feel more confident in their letter writing skills. The second letter was written by Antonio himself and is written on the older children's stationary. He is relatively specific about what his life looks like - his family, what he likes, and when he attends the Compassion center. All throughout this letter he is incredibly affectionate and sweet. I would say that is a good letter for a ten year old boy in the fourth grade (at the time the letter was written) from the letters I have seen from children over the years. His third letter is similar. It was written by him on the older children's stationary and is very affectionate and loving. He mentions some details about his life. In these three letters over the last year and a half, I see some progress in Antonio's letter writing ability.  It is important to keep in mind that letter writing is somewhat of a foreign cultural concept in many of the places we work. Verbal communication in these areas is the focus. I noticed by reading over your letters to Antonio that you make statements to him that I personally would know to respond to in my culture but these cultural nuances might not be overly clear in other contexts. You don't need to necessarily not mention these things but I do recommend asking clear questions about things you would like to know. Then, number, highlight, or somehow bring attention to those questions. If you do this, it will be more clear what you would like responded to. Also, please try to avoid phrases and acronyms that might be difficult to translate. This will ensure that your message and what you are trying to say to him will be understood on the other side. 

Also, to help give a little background, the letters are often written as part of a class exercise so staff can provide adequate help and attention to individual children as they write their letters. Several weeks after Antonio received your letter, the staff at the student center would have scheduled a time for all the children to write letters to their sponsors. 

I understand that it can be tough to pour love and affection into a child's life and get very little if anything back. Please know that your letters do matter. You have the very special opportunity to act as a mentor for the child you are sponsoring. Your consistent letters of encouragement communicate, “I care about you and I want to be a part of your life.” There is power in that. With each letter, you are building up his life in ways that we may not be able to dream or imagine. 

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