Real child or computer generated???

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We have been a sponsor for over a year. The English language is not as foreign to Africa as in other countries. I feel torn towards my attitude on this question or statement, BUT I must shed light on my confusion - we know no more about our sponsored child now than we did when we made this commitment to sponsor. We do not get letters as often as I expected with the electronic approach. Please give us guidance as I feel cheated with our commitment, finances, and spiritual diligence.
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Rose

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Posted 1 month ago

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Laura West-Baldwin

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Dear Rose,
Thank you for sponsoring a child.  May I ask if you are a new sponsor?  The frustrations you are expressing I feel are normal for a new sponsor and I felt many of them at one time as well.  You are in fact sponsoring a real child.  I have been a sponsor for over 10 years and over the years I have greatly matured in many ways spiritually.  I know that it isn't about me and what I can get out of the sponsorship, but the whole purpose of why I became a sponsor was to give.  We have to realize that these families are living in extreme poverty, something that we will never understand.  We live in a type of culture where everything needs to be convenient, easy, and fast.  In these impoverished countries, you see orphaned children raising children... some of these families working until their fingers bleed all day with pennies for income and still are unable to feed their children, and the stories could go on.  We will never grasp what this is like because we have never had to live it.  In America, we are accustomed to letter writing and greeting cards.  They do not have good or even reliable mail services in some of these countries.  Letter writing is not something that is taught or comes naturally to them as it does to us.  One of my oldest sponsored kids, Sandy... I have been her sponsor since she was 4 years old and she will be 16 this year.  Even though she is older, I may only get a letter once every 2 months and this last stretch was 4 months.  It's okay though.  I can feel her heart in her written words.  Also, if I may say this... I don't always feel they are so excited about sharing everything about their life.  We as sponsors should never feel cheated.  If you have prayed and have followed the Lord's leading, then I would encourage you to continue to pray.  Our treasures are not down her on earth.  I would also encourage you if you are able and there is an event close to where you live, go to one of the Compassion gatherings that host a Compassion graduate.  I listened to a man tell his story about how his father was shot in front of his mother at a very young age and then they had to live in the slums.  He was also often very sick.  Later he was accepted into the Compassion Program and sponsored by a teenager who continued to sponsor him all the way through until he graduated.  He is now a pastor and is so spirit filled and carries the love of Christ with him wherever he goes. 
Please know that what you are doing is truly making a difference even when at times it doesn't feel like it.  You are changing the future for your child and it WILL have a ripple effect.

Sincerely,
Laura
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Shannon Massey, Employee

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Laura, 

Thank you so much for sharing your sponsorship story! This is just beautiful and we appreciate every word! 
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Shannon Massey, Employee

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Hi Rose, 

Thank you so much for taking the time to reach out to us. I am so sorry to hear that you feel like over the last year you really have not been able connect with your child and that you feel like you really haven't received any new information on your child in this year. I do understand. Many sponsors feel this way for a while when they are beginning to form a relationship with your child. As Laura said, letter writing really is a hard concept for these children, especially since your child is only 10 years old. You are likely the only person he has ever written to. 

I would encourage you to try highlighting your questions in your next letter. This will draw the project staff's attention to the questions. This usually helps with the communication process and may be able to open up some more communication for you and your sweet boy. 
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Rose

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Thank you for sharing. I’m confused by Shannon’s response as we are sponsoring a little girl. We’ve been her sponsor for just over 2 years. I have no doubt she is doing her best. I’m not questioning her, but the agency. I’ve been to Kenya on a mission. I’ve seen the poverty first hand. It’s been 2 1/2 years - no new picture. We hold tight to the first and only picture we have of our sweet Kenyan girl.
(Edited)
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Shannon Massey, Employee

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Rose, 

I am so sorry for my mistake! I certainly did not mean to confuse you. I did see your sweet girl on your account, and I accidentally just said boy. That is completely my fault and I am so sorry! 

I do see that you have been sponsoring Nzilani since 9/22/18 so it has been about a year and a half now. In Addition, I see her last photo update was in June 2019. It sounds like maybe you missed this second photo. If so, I am so sorry for that. I actually see she has had 4 photos during her time with Compassion. I am going to email you those right now. 

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