Special Gift - A Bike. How do I go about it?

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One of our sponsored children indicated that he would like to have a bike. I am willing to buy him one but want to go about it in the right way. First, should I be concerned that he may get the idea that we can purchase anything he wants going forward? Second, would it be best to buy it anonymously? Third, how do I go about this? If I just send money it may be used for other things. Can I coordinate with the local CI group on this?

I see from another post that sending money may be the best option, and the local CI group will make sure it gets used appropriately. So the only remaining question may be ... how much does an appropriate bike cost in Surabaya?

 Thanks so much!

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Marlin Vrbas

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Posted 2 years ago

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Christina, Employee

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Hi Marlin! We appreciate your desire to bless Gilbert in a very tangible way with a bicycle! Regrettably, we are not able to send packages to your child. This is for a couple of reasons. Everything we send to our country offices is declared at customs as a document. If custom officials find anything in a box of letters that isn't a document, we are assessed a hefty fine and the box will be held for weeks, possibly months. Sadly, there is also a high incidence of theft when sending packages to the developing world, and shipping items overseas can be quite costly.

Instead, we encourage you to send a monetary gift! You may give directly to your child by choosing to give a Child Gift or Birthday Gift of $10-$100, or you may give a Family Gift of $25-$1,000 per year. When your child and their family receive this gift, a Compassion staff member will assist them in purchasing a gift for your child. Please know that we will offer counsel in spending your gift funds to ensure your gift is used wisely. You are welcome to make recommendations on how you would like the money to be used. There is an option to do that at the bottom of the checkout screen by clicking the link that says "I have additional instructions regarding this donation." The US Dollar value varies in each country, but I can tell you that in Indonesian Rupiah a bicycle costs about $60. Please know that our field staff will do their very best to honor your request, but the use of the gift is ultimately up to the family. Therefore, if they have an immediate need, they may use the gift to help meet that need. You can expect to receive a thank you letter from your child about six months after the gift is given, letting you know what was purchased. If the gift amount is $60 or more, you will also receive a photo of your child with what was purchased.

There are other fun ways to bless your kiddos too! Along with a personal letter, you can send: stickers, bookmarks, musical greeting cards, and pop-up cards. These items will be physically delivered to your child. Please keep in mind that items sent without a personal letter will not be delivered to your sponsored child. You can also send: letters, photos, postcards, greeting cards, coloring pages and paper crafts. However, your child will not receive the original items. The items will be scanned and sent electronically. The total number of items (including stationery and the letter to your child) should not be more than six sheets, and each flat paper gift item should not be larger than 8.5” x 11”. If you have any further questions about our letter writing guidelines, more information is available here. Thank you so much for blessing your children with your love and support! Have a blessed day!

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