Questions about our compassion child in India

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With the Compassion program in India very likely going away, what are the next steps for sponsors? Here are my specific questions:
1) is there any way we can still keep in touch with our sponsored child?
2) do the children know what's going on? Do they understand we are not abandoning them and that we love them very much?
3) if some positive change does occur, what is the plan to get sponsors back in place? For instance, if in five months things get sorted out, will you reach back out to me about continuing my sponsorship?
4) is there a plan in place for what to do with our sponsorship money? Does Compassion hope to redirect those funds to unsponsored kids in other parts of the world?

Thank you!
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Mallorie Burczyk

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Posted 2 years ago

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Susan, Sponsor and Donor Relations, Social Media

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Official Response
Mallorie, 

We are so heartbroken over the situation in India. We are still hoping and praying for a miracle and that God will come through at the last moment. That said, even if God doesn't, we know that God is in control and will bring good from this situation. We have to be realistic and honest with you all, our supporters, that there is very little hope and we are making plans to close our offices in India as of March 15 if nothing changes. 

I am happy to answer your questions. Please let me know if you have any other questions or if you would like to make any changes on your account. 
  1. In some cases we are able to deliver letters and in others we are regrettably not. If we are not able to send a letter, it is being kept at the country office with the hopes that we may be able to get it to the children. We will do everything we can to deliver your letters but we cannot guarantee delivery because we are currently not able to pay our staff to get the letters there. I am so sorry as I know it is tough to not know if you can say goodbye or not. Our hearts are breaking with this whole situation. 
    We can try to arrange direct contact with your child after we leave India, but regrettably, it may not be possible to get your contact information to your sponsored child. Our program operations are at a very limited capacity right now because we cannot pay our staff because we cannot get funding into the country. There are also risks and challenges related to direct contact, including translation issues and potential threats to you as a sponsor. I am so sorry as I know that it is tough to feel like you can't say goodbye.
  2. We have given notice to our staff and church partners. They will let the children and families know in the most culturally and age appropriate way. 
  3. If we are forced to close our offices and then at some point down the road things change, I cannot guarantee that we will be able to contact you about continuing this specific sponsorship. It really depends on how much time has passed. If it has been several years, some of the children may be too old for sponsorship at that point or they may have moved. It's just tough to tell what will be possible.  
  4. Each sponsor is in control of their own giving. We are happy to transfer funds that are on hold for an Indian child to another child for them. We can also refund that amount. The options for sponsors also include waiting till March 15 before transferring funds or to cancel their sponsorship of their Indian child and transfer the funds now. 
(Edited)
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Mallorie Burczyk

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Thanks for your response! I am interested in taking a risk and writing a letter. Our child has a pretty good mastery of basic English at this point (he is a bit older), so I would like to pursue writing him. How to I get ahold of a separate address for writing to him? I live in Europe, so I am hopeful that our letters will be less suspicious.

I will absolutely wait until March 15 and continue to pray for a miracle, but if that doesn't occur, we will definitely want to sponsor another child. Will an email go out at the time, or do I need to contact Compassion on March 15 to select another sponsor child?
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Sarah, Sponsor and Donor Relations, Social Media

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Hi Mallorie! I will have that waiver for continuing correspondence sent to you immediately. Since you live in Europe, I am going to request it be emailed to you if you don't mind. That way, it will get to you much faster. If we do indeed close our doors in India on March 15, we will be contacting sponsors. I don't know yet if that will be by phone, email, or letter (although yours would probably be email), but you will be hearing from us officially around that time.
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Arvella Elizabeth Rose

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Wish I had access to this waiver for my sponsored baby.
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Susan, Sponsor and Donor Relations, Social Media

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Arvella, we sent the waiver early to Mallorie because she lives in Europe. Please remind us again in March, if we have to close our office in India, that you would like the continuing correspondence waiver of liability. 
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Mallorie Burczyk

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One other thing: after reading some other posts on here, I realize that we should have been told how our gift money has been used after all these years. Is that the expected norm? We send birthday and Christmas money every year, but Yogen only mentioned a rice cooker being given one time several years ago. Just curious for our future sponsorships.
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KristenH, Champion

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Yes, you should get a thank you letter approximately six months after sending the gift money that tells you how the money was used. If the money sent was in excess of $60 you should also receive a photo! 
Hope that helps. Someone from Compassion should be able to help you with your other questions after the weekend :)
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Arvella Elizabeth Rose

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This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled Attending To Closing Details Before My Sponsorship Ends With My Baby From India.

I have a baby in India that I will most likely lose based on the update that was just sent by Rick Davis.  I sent him a letter online through the website at the end of December 2016.  How can I make sure he gets it before Compassion's time in India ends in March?  Do I have time to send him another letter (a goodbye letter)?  Can I leave my personal info with him so we can continue contact?  If I send him money now, can I be assured that he'll get the funds before March 15th?
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Meghan Smith

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This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled If Compassion is forced to stop work in India is there any way I could still writ....
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Niels Krejci

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This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled India child providing email.

With the centers in India closing - is there a way to provide my sponsored child my email and contact information. In the future he may be able to re-establish contact that way.
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Stephanie A Simpson

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This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled Is Compassion Still Trying To Work Out Thing In India.

How much longer is Compassion going to try and work things out in India? I sponsor a young man there.
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Sarah, Sponsor and Donor Relations, Social Media

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Hi Stephanie! Compassion is continuing to work out things in India until our final decision is made, which will be by March 15th. Keep covering him and the entire ministry of Compassion in prayer!
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Paulina

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This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled No longer able to sponsor in India.

I received a letter that the India office will be closing. Will I automatically be given another child or...? I wasn't clear on what happens after this. I would like to continue to help and support Compassion but didn't know what steps I needed to take following this change. 
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Sarah, Sponsor and Donor Relations, Social Media

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Paulina, it is very likely that Compassion will be closing its doors in India by March 15. We will have an update for sponsors within the next few weeks. If you are prepared now to take on a different child, we would encourage you to do that. I am not able to find your account with the email address you provided. Do you know your sponsor number? If you'd like to chose a new child, please let me know and I will remove your child from India from your account.
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Paulina

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yes, my sponsor number is 02014719. I would like to choose a new child, so please remove my current child and I'll start sponsoring a new one. 

Thank you for your help and the clarification! 
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Susan, Sponsor and Donor Relations, Social Media

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Paulina, 

When you are selecting a new child, please let us know that you had sponsored a child in India. That way, your new child will be added to your account as a "replacement" child instead of your Indian child (I hate the word replacement in this context. No child is a replacement. I'm just not sure how else to say it). 

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Tammy

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Susan,

I was on the verge of sponsoring a new child and I could not find that drop down box message anywhere after adding her to my cart, or on the next screen. I cancelled the transaction before completing it so I would not mess anything up. Maybe I will get further instructions in the letter that is supposed to be coming shortly?
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Traci

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Susan, is it important to say a new sponsored child is a replacement? I sponsored a new child two days ago because I know that the sponsorship for my child in India will end on the 15th. I have not taken off my child in India from my account - I will let Compassion do that on the 15th. I guess I'm not ready to accept that there is no hope left that things will work out. But my new child in Ecaudor is basically a "replacement."
My second question is, are there any tips that can be shared on writing a "goodbye" letter to our children in India? I need to do this, but have struggled finding the words to say. I also know there is no guarantee that they will receive the goodbye letter, but I still want to try sending one.
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Sarah, Sponsor and Donor Relations, Social Media

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Tammy, I am getting an answer on this for you right now. Thanks so much for holding off while I get the answer :). Traci, it makes things easier for our background work with these India children if we know the new children are to replace the India children sponsors are losing. I completely understand your feelings regarding the decision that has been made :(. I'll note your account that your Ecuador child is the replacement kiddo for your India child. Thanks for letting me know! My tip for you when writing that letter is to fill it with encouragement for the child's future. Remind him or her that your love does not stop just because Compassion is no longer a part of their life. I completely understand how hard it is to write that final letter! I've struggled and struggled with the words myself, but I know the right words will come when I sit down to write it and just let go and let God write it through me. He's going to give you the strength and the words to write that letter, Traci. As sponsors of India children, we are all going through stages of grief over this heartbreak. Remember to allow yourself to grieve completely through this season of turmoil. I'm praying for you, Traci, and for your sweet child. We've been talking about some heavy things at my church lately, and God was really using the series and Romans 8 to speak to me through the difficulty of facing this situation that I don't understand myself. God's not giving up on India, and this may be an opportunity for the church in India to grow exponentially and thrive. God's goodness will shine through this. Share your heart with your child and point them to Jesus for strength and courage for his or her life one last time. The goodbye is hard, but you've made an impact on that child's life that isn't going to fade away.
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Sarah, Sponsor and Donor Relations, Social Media

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Tammy,If you have a cookie in the browser, that drop down won’t appear. Visit this link first https://www.compassion.com/admin/ClearSession.htmand then try sponsoring the child.  That will clear your browser history and should help that drop down appear. Let me know if you still have trouble!
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Traci

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Sarah, thank you for responding. I also will be praying for all the other sponsors of India children, for the Compassion staff, local churches in India, and of course all the children. I will get my farewell letter sent soon and pray that Ruben receives it.  Also Sarah, would it be possible if you e-mail me the waiver for continuing correspondence? I know it's a long shot for Ruben to receive my contact information, but I would like to at least try.
(Edited)
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Tammy

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Thank you, Sarah! I was able to find the drop down menu using that link. Would you please send me any info/photos you have for beautiful little Linda (IO089200431)?

Thank you for your help in getting that resolved!
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Shannon Massey, Employee

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Hi Tammy! I just sent an email over with that information! 
Have a great day! 
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Paulina

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About a week ago, I sponsored a new child (to "replace" my other child)- when will my account reflect the change?
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Haley, Sponsor and Donor Relations, Operations

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Hi Paulina - it typically takes a few weeks for those account changes to be reflected. If you'd like us to check that account for you, we would be happy to do that. We would just need your supporter ID or the child's ID in order to do that. Thanks!
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Paulina

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My sponsor id is 02014719. Thank you for checking on this! 
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Haley, Sponsor and Donor Relations, Operations

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Thanks for your patience! I do see this transaction in our system. Since it's having to do with India, that does have to be processed manually. Our processing team is a few weeks behind, just because of the volume of requests right now. But rest assured that you're request is in queue to be completed.
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Paulina

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I appreciate you checking on it- I was concerned that I had inputted my information and it just disappeared! I'll keep an eye out on my account for the change in a few weeks. 

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