tell me how to do my job This blog is meant to be an authentic and sincere communication tool with you and for you. It’s not supposed to be about us talking at you.

I strive to make this blog relevant to your sponsorship experience, and most of the time with what I publish, I’m just guessing. Your interests, situations, questions, familiarity with Compassion, etc. offer up quite a challenge when it comes to finding the proper balance between our desires for advocacy and getting more children sponsored and what I imagine your desire to be:

“Help me feel closer to my sponsored child!”

It’s important to everyone on our Web team that you get what you want, that you feel more connected with your sponsored child because of what you read here. If you perceive this blog to be a one-dimensional commercial about how great Compassion is, then we are failing you.

Please use this blog post to let me know what content you want more of and what you want less of. Let me know what information you aren’t getting that you wish you were getting.

I’m asking for your help in determining what gets published here. The comments you leave will allow me to make specific requests for blog posts from our field communications specialists and from the staff serving in Colorado Springs.

Thanks.

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  • Chris is the Sponsor Engagement and Social Media Program Manager. He's responsible for all of our social media initiatives.

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  1. Dee Dee Molinary Hammer
    Apr 12, 2010
    at 2:53 am

    like the information about things happening in specific child projects. read a few on bangladesh and one on Mexico. that helps with the connection with our sponsored children. None were of “our” childrens projects specifically, now that would of really been something.:) Thanks for the work done here.

    • Apr 12, 2010
      at 9:56 am

      Dee Dee,

      None were of “our” childrens projects specifically, now that would of really been something.

      Maybe some day. For each post that talks about a specific child development center, I now go into OurCompassion and let the sponsors who have kids at that center know about the post.

  2. Sara Benson
    Apr 12, 2010
    at 6:56 am

    While I enjoy reading all of the posts, I like the project specific information and specific child stories the most. I also like the posts that tell stories of the sponsors, or ask us for our ideas and responses. The posts about letter writing are one example that when given the chance we will be thrilled to talk about our kids and share ideas (we might even come up with a few that you had not thought of:)
    But then again I like the posts that give us high level details. And the ones that alert us to videos.
    So I guess that I really like most of the posts that are done here.

    • Apr 12, 2010
      at 9:54 am

      Sara,

      I also like the posts that . . . ask us for our ideas and responses.

      I like those too. All of posts of that type which have already been published have pretty much been ideas that have come from sponsors. Got any thoughts for what to do next?

  3. Nina Rogers
    Apr 12, 2010
    at 7:06 am

    Profiles on Compassion workers out in the field! It’s inspiring to read about the people “on the front lines” whose programs we are helping to support.

  4. Kristen
    Apr 12, 2010
    at 7:22 am

    I agree, I crave info about my sponsored children’s day to day life. A glimpse into the routines at the projects and articles about people who work there are always welcome. I also love hearing the “where are they now” stories about former sponsored children. Or stories about current children and how their families and communities have been improved by Compassion’s involvement. Speaking of “where are they now”, has an update been posted about the little boy that had heart surgery a while back? I think his name was Alexander maybe.

    • Apr 12, 2010
      at 8:57 am

      Kristen,

      A glimpse into the routines at the projects and articles about people who work there are always welcome.

      I’ll request more of those types of posts.

      And some of these.

      I also love hearing the “where are they now” stories about former sponsored children.

      I’ll also get an update on Alexander. Probably something quick on how he is doing now and then something more detailed to follow.

    • Apr 13, 2010
      at 4:15 pm

      Kristen,

      It turns out that we just received our final update from the Kenya office about Alexander.

      It says:

      “Alexander’s quality of life has greatly improved. His current physical appearance is quite impressive, once a hard to smile boy, he is now jovial and has brightened up. He is tirelessly assisting his mother with household chores like sweeping the home compound, fetching water and even tilling the farm.

      “Alexander is able to consistently attend the planned programmatic activities and his performance in school has greatly improved. Playing with his friends and schoolmates has never been this good.”

      It also contains a few comments from Alexander’s mother.

      “I was relieved when my son got treatment from India. The worries I used to have disappeared and the family joy, peace and unity have been restored. In addition, the family livelihood has improved since I have more time to trade in the market and work in the farm.

      “Through this experience, I have learned to trust and rely on God since now I know that God will never leave or forsake me. As a family we realized that God is the only answer to our problems and seeking Him more will be of great gain, therefore we began a home based fellowship where we read the Bible and worship God with songs and pray a lot. This has made our faith in God to grow and we go to church more frequently than we used to before.”

  5. Lindy
    Apr 12, 2010
    at 7:53 am

    I especially appreciate the stories and photos of people–sponsored children, their families, LDP students, the project workers, sponsor tour participants, and Compassion staff. I love the videos of sponsored children and LDP students and the recordings about workers’ best day in ministry. Being able to get a glimpse of what life is like for them is what keeps me coming back to the blog!

  6. Apr 12, 2010
    at 8:11 am

    I really enjoy the blog posts written by workers in the field about the specific circumstances in their area (or a holiday, etc.), but is there a way for a native English-speaker to edit them prior to being published? The information is great, as is the first-hand account, but the story-telling style is different from what we’re used to, so I think that sometimes we (or at least I) don’t always read the whole thing.

    You’re probably going for authenticity, but I think by doing so it ends up not necessarily always communicating as well as you’d want it to. I’m sure that’s a fine line to walk. Thanks for giving us the chance to offer (hopefully) constructive criticism!

    • Apr 12, 2010
      at 8:45 am

      Princess Leia,

      You are correct. We want the authenticity. I understand what you’re saying and will look into having the posts, which are very lightly edited now, possibly edited a tad bit more.

  7. Betsy Slaughter
    Apr 12, 2010
    at 8:11 am

    I am very interested in specific details of projects. It doesn’t matter where they are, so long as they are representative of the work being done. I would like more information about the way Compassion works with the local church. Who sets the priorities for a project? The church, the neighborhood, Compassion? I would like some reflections on how people deal with the immense disparity between many Americans and those we sponsor. Not just reports from people who do sponsorship trips, but from others, like me, who are already aware of the desperate conditions around the world. How are Compassion staffers, for instance, different in their “regular” lives because of their first hand knowledge of needs? How do we all avoid both guilt and denial? How is God speaking to other sponsors and staffers about our response to global poverty?
    Thanks.

    • Apr 12, 2010
      at 8:41 am

      Betsy,

      I am very interested in specific details of projects. It doesn’t matter where they are, so long as they are representative of the work being done.

      Anything specific on your mind?

      I would like more information about the way Compassion works with the local church. Who sets the priorities for a project? The church, the neighborhood, Compassion?

      Consider it requested.

      I would like some reflections on how people deal with the immense disparity between many Americans and those we sponsor. Not just reports from people who do sponsorship trips, but from others, like me, who are already aware of the desperate conditions around the world. How are Compassion staffers, for instance, different in their “regular” lives because of their first hand knowledge of needs? How do we all avoid both guilt and denial? How is God speaking to other sponsors and staffers about our response to global poverty?

      Some good stuff to noodle on. I’ll see what I can do.

  8. Amy
    Apr 12, 2010
    at 8:39 am

    I’d like to read guest blog posts written by sponsors, once in awhile!

  9. Amy
    Apr 12, 2010
    at 9:07 am

    I love the blog! I agree with everyone that project specific posts are great. They really help me know how to pray more specifically for my sponsored child and for the ministry of Compassion. I enjoy the stories of specific children. I usually cry when I read or watch them. I would love to read posts geared towards actions that we as sponsors can take, suggestions for correspondence with your sponsored children, and specific needs that are currently not being met.

    • Apr 12, 2010
      at 10:04 am

      Amy,

      I would love to read posts geared towards actions that we as sponsors can take, suggestions for correspondence with your sponsored children, and specific needs that are currently not being met.

      I definitely want to deliver what you’ve asked for. And I’m always looking for opportunities for action to share with you. Actually, there aren’t really a shortage of opportunities, what is short is our ability to follow-up with you on the impact you’ve had. We’re working to improve that.

  10. Marvin
    Apr 12, 2010
    at 9:10 am

    Thanks for the post.
    Have a general blog and then one for each region… Asia, Africa, South America….
    Have a point person from each country…even if they had 2 or 3 people give short comments about what God is doing…. What do the partner churches think/ what do they want to tell us or the kids, or the country office staff…let them talk to us…. Sorry to say this but it’s probably a better selling point for how great compassion is…. Compassion has become a large organization; at times I am a little overwhelmed by the world’s problems. I would like to learn more about our Childs country and region. Yes Thailand is different from India or the Philippines but they do have some things in common that Africa does not have. And I assume they work out of the same regional office.

    I have friends from other countries and the English grammar is poor (sorry) but the unfiltered comments are interesting. If everything is so polished it just looks like marketing…and you don’t really know what to believe. And some of the best stories never get told. At one project I visited the project director and 4 or 5 caseworks are former sponsored children…. After my visit one pastor sent us a wonderful letter…he talked about the city and the project…. If some of the pastors submitted letters that could fill the blog from months. It could be translated like any other letter and then posted. Think of the thousands of pastors and country staff in Asia… we would love to know more about them and the community they serve…and how to pray for them.

    I guess this is part of the problem for the developer’s people want many different things. I like the un-filtered English… I have learned to read between the lines. I would rather have more information from my country rather than more polished information. To Americanize it takes time and that equals less information. They only have the budget for so many people to polish it up. Maybe we could have a little of each. A few that are re-done by a native speaker and a few that are as is so we have some volume of information. I would rather have 1 poor English post a week from the Philippines than one every 2 or 3 moths.
    Thank you

    • Apr 12, 2010
      at 10:11 am

      Marvin,

      Have a general blog and then one for each region… Asia, Africa, South America….Have a point person from each country…even if they had 2 or 3 people give short comments about what God is doing.

      As our staffing capacity grows I expect that we’ll deliver more specificity like you suggest. And although this is on our radar, I believe its a longer-term item because when talking about staffing and funding its a delicate job of balancing overall ministry priorities.

      I like the un-filtered English… I have learned to read between the lines.

      Glad you like it. I commit to not lose the authenticity or over-polish what we publish.

  11. Apr 12, 2010
    at 9:30 am

    The most uplifting thing I’ve had recently from Compassion is an updated picture of my girl, Karthigai! I know it’s always busy for Compassion staff, but I appreciated someone taking the time to send me pictures of my sweet girl so I can show her (and Compassion’s fabulous work) off to everyone!

    • Apr 12, 2010
      at 10:00 am

      Alex,

      Whenever a post about a child comes across my desk, I always make sure to let the sponsor know about the post and to send whatever photos came with the story. It’s a small thing, but I know that it means a lot.

  12. Betsy Slaughter
    Apr 12, 2010
    at 10:07 am

    Details about projects might include vaccination clinics, water purification efforts, specific health education we give kids, supplies(toothbrushes? soap?). Don’t even know what we do about health, that’s why I would welcome some details.

    • Apr 12, 2010
      at 10:13 am

      Betsy,

      Specific health education stories it is. Thanks for the idea. I know just what to ask for now.

  13. Apr 12, 2010
    at 11:54 am

    I love the blog and think you’ve done a remarkable job of giving us a mix of everything. My knowledge of and interest in Compassion went through the roof when I started participating in this blog.

    1) I think I agree with several previous posters that I enjoy the project-specific stuff: what the kids do everyday, what it’s like for them when they get mail, how they write their letters, what they learn, how they learn, etc. I love a peek into the child centers.

    2) I would also love a “do you have any questions?” post. Maybe just put out a post where sponsors can ask questions or get clarification on things about sponsorship they’ve always wondered about. I always have miscellaneous stuff that I’m unclear on — how long letters and child gifts take to get to kids, etc. Perhaps staff could answer them via that blog post.

    3) There was a really cool article, I think on the website, about a sponsor who sponsors a ton of children. The article was about his/her filing system that she uses to keep track of the kids, what she’s sent them, etc. I really liked a peek into the lives of some super-sponsors and how they do what they do. And why they do what they do. I’m sure many have a good story.

    Anyway, keep up the great work!

  14. Apr 12, 2010
    at 11:59 am

    Like Sara and many other ideas posted here, I love the stories of individuals–kids, sponsors, advocates, project directors, Compassion staff, etc. I really like first-person glimpses of what it’s like to serve on the front lines of Compassion’s work, or to be impacted by Compassion’ outreach. (Absolutely devoured the Kenya blogs!)

    I’d love to hear a little more from Compassion “graduates.” I sponsor an LDP student, so I love anything at all about LDPs, but I’m also interested in reading more about folks who had attended Compassion projects and what sorts of things they are doing now, or how Compassion work impacted their extended families.

    Bottom line-as a sponsor, I like anything that helps me feel closer to the kids who are part of our Compassion “family.” Keep up the great work. Reading this blog is a highlight for my day, and helps keep me motivated to pray and do my best for Compassion kids.

  15. Caitlin
    Apr 12, 2010
    at 12:02 pm

    I love hearing about children’s specific routines, as well as specific projects (yes I know people have said this a bunch of times already). I would also like to hear more about the interventions Compassion might make on specific childrens behalf (For example, we just saw a post on the staff protecting children from abuse, how about a follow up, perhaps a specific child who was suffering from abuse and what was done, anonymous if it must be). Also, I would like to hear more about the charities that Compassion often cooperates with in different countries. And another thing, I would love to hear about some of the things specific projects are struggling with whether it’s politics, disease, finances, or weather.

    And also, I like the unpolished non-English speaker’s posts. As a studier of languages, I feel like “polishing” these posts would lose a lot of the heart and legitimacy.

  16. Apr 12, 2010
    at 12:05 pm

    One other thought. When I search older posts, sometimes I’m not sure what year the entry was posted? It would help if the date of each blog post could include the year. thanks much

  17. Sara Benson
    Apr 12, 2010
    at 12:12 pm

    I second the idea of having some guest posts by sponsors. I really enjoyed reading about Kees’ trip to Bolivia.

    I think that information on how often the children in different locations attend the projects would be interesting. I know that is some places it is once a week, and in others is 5-days a week.

    In realation to the specific questions that would prompt sponsor response, I will have to think about that.. I know that a lot of that conversation happens in OC now. Maybe inviting sponsors to tell others about their children, or specific prayer requests that the children have asked. In OC someone started a idea of posting blogs with “I love ______ (my sponsored child) because….” It has been interesting to read about the relationships that sponsors have with their kids.

    Another idea is to do more posts that remind people about OurCompassion. Maybe guest bloggers could blog on the OC site and then it can be displayed on this blog with a link to the original post?

  18. Apr 12, 2010
    at 12:15 pm

    Oh, two other things.

    1) If you haven’t already done it, I would really love a peek into Compassion’s mail room and what that process looks like. How the mail is opened, sorted, distributed. I know there was something on the website — the journey of a letter — maybe you could do something for the blog.

    2) I would also be interested in “meeting” other Compassion departments. Maybe just a peek into what they do and how they do it. Perhaps you could interview someone who works in the call center, someone who plans sponsor tours, someone who writes for the magazine, etc. They could tell us how and why they came to work for Compassion, what they do each day — and maybe offer tips for us sponsors. Each employee must have a unique perspective on the program and some wisdom they’d like to pass along.

    Ask the same list of questions of each person so there’s a format we could follow. (Kind of like the Proust questionnaire at the back of Vanity Fair.)

  19. Apr 12, 2010
    at 12:46 pm

    I think that one of the big draws to this blog is the fact that it’s not just a blog, it’s a community. I don’t comment often but I do read comments to posts I’m interested in and I’ve noticed that there are lots of the same commenters.

    When a story was posted about the family in Sri Lanka that was in need of a cart (or something!) this community pulled together and funds were raised for that family. I think that was the neatest thing!

    It would be a very fine line between fundraising and using this as an outlet to help but I think that was a really neat ‘project’ that grew and brought us together. Afterall, THAT is what community is for – and this really is a great one.

    Again, I think it would be tough and the former was a sponsor/commenter’s idea (correct?) – but it was really neat.

    I’d also like to see new Compassion products featured here. There are a lot of great Compassion shirts and I hardly remember to check the store for them… just a thought.

    All of the other ideas are great too. I think my favorite type of posts are ones with children and their letters – as sponsors we send money and then we write (or visit), it’s neat to see our letters and the impact they have. We *know* they impact our children but reading about it and seeing it takes it to another level.

    Great post by the way! :)

  20. Lindy
    Apr 12, 2010
    at 12:59 pm

    Thanks, Chris, for your comment on my comment! I really appreciate all you do!

  21. Apr 12, 2010
    at 2:19 pm

    Sherry,

    I’ll get right on fixing the date confusion on older posts.

  22. Dana
    Apr 12, 2010
    at 5:49 pm

    I agree with a lot of what people have said. Also, it would be neat to have country-specific information. On the US site, there’s a section that tells you about each country and a bit about what life is like and what certain amounts of money will buy gift-wise – like a goat or a chicken. I’ll often go to that section to read up on my children’s countries. It’s easy enough to find the info on the US site, though, so maybe it’s not the best use of time and energy, as we can access the information there.

    I love the personal stories of children, too – the difference Compassion is making and how Compassion is working in different communities.

    It would also be fun to see collections of pictures – like from the Christmas parties or birthday celebrations. that’s the cool thing abotu reading blogs from Compassion advocacy tripes – seeing pictures of the projects. I also like the idea of “A Day in the Life of…”, showing what a typical day might be like for a child in a particular project or particular country. Those blogs always make me feel closer to my child because it helps me get a glimpse into their lives.

    Thanks for doing this, Chris. :)

    Dana

  23. Mike Stephens
    Apr 12, 2010
    at 8:25 pm

    I love the blog b/c I see stuff I would never see. I can only go to so many countries. I like pictures. I just try to glean what I can from the blog to use it as inspiration to go visit the kids I sponsor. I just see the blog as extra credit. Anything on it is simply gravy to me. There are so many videos and pictures of sponsor tours/trips b/c of Ourcompassion. My advice is take the web team out Chris maybe to whole foods and have some of their pizza and Reed’s Jamaican Ginger beer (ginger ale) (pizza is like $5-7) cheaper on fridays. Pray a little and congratulate yourselves on having many good blog stories and let people on the web team post a story etc. or topic that they really want to and let them be creative yourself included. My only advice is give yourselves freedom to write about what you want to or what God is leading you to or putting on your heart. I’m going to read it regardless and enjoy it. You guys should buy the $105 Big Kahuna passes to water world for the summer and go as the web team and have a blog of some of the web teamers going down a fast water slide and somehow tie it into Compassion. I do like seeing and hearing worship at the projects, that is probably my favorite. The other advice continue to be bold and write what you want to put in the blog. The blog is secondary to me, I am very thankful and excited that I am almost paid off for the Tanzania Advocate Tour. And I hope to win the Boulder Peak Triathlon so I can give Bushiri the trophy to encourage him to become a “football player” like he wants. I have learned so much from the blog I almost feel like there is not much else to know. But I am always learning. So my request is for the web team to do the blog how they really believe, feel, and think it should be done. I greatly appreciate all the web teams hard work in all the stories and posts they put on the blog day in and day out!!!!!!!!! I suggest 3 paid sponsor tours for everyone on the web team on which they come up with blog posts/stories from their trips! ;) In bible words…

    I Corinthians 10:31 “So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.”

  24. Kathy Olson
    Apr 12, 2010
    at 8:29 pm

    Chris,

    You are really brave to ask for comments. You are going to get innundated. I love your posts.I can identify with where you are coming from. I never comment because I don’t have anything profound to say but I really appreciate what you post. I’ve been a Compassion sponsor for 28 years. I wish I’d have known back then the things I know now like the importance of writing letters.

    I guess I would agree with what many of the others have said. I love the individual stories. I don’t care if it is the day in the life of a sponsored child (or an unsponsored child) or a field worker or a staff worker or a day of someone’s tour (what they saw and did). I loved the pastor letters because it was a window into my child’s world. Even if it is not a project where I sponsor, specific is better. (Individual story instead of something generally applicable to many. ie: many children get malaria). I guess it is like poverty in general. It is said that the big picture becomes overwhelming but the small picture is easier to get one’s head around. I think that is why Compassion is so successful. It is easier to connect with one child in poverty than to slay a dragon that feels overwhelming.

  25. Apr 12, 2010
    at 8:35 pm

    First, I think you’re already doing a great job! I really love to read your posts and followed your trip to Africa. I would love to learn more about what I can do as a Compassion advocate, what are other groups / advocates doing that I could also do in my community? What are the ways we can get our children involved. I love the personal stories about the children reached by Compassion. I also would love to know more ways that I can help my sponsored child.

    Keep up the great work!!!
    Melanie

    • Apr 13, 2010
      at 3:39 pm

      Thank you everyone for your suggestions and your compliments. I’ve made a note of what you’ve said and I’ll begin the process of trying to make the new ideas happen.

      Melanie,

      “I would love to learn more about what I can do as a Compassion advocate, what are other groups / advocates doing that I could also do in my community?”

      For now, all I can offer is a link to blog posts that have been tagged “Advocates Network” and which have mostly been written by advocates. However, I will also try to get someone to commit to writing “regular” blog posts about what you’re looking for.

  26. Apr 12, 2010
    at 8:59 pm

    I’ve seen a few comments from people who want to see blog posts from sponsors. I know there have been blog posts from several sponsors (mine was in January), but they have not been identified as such. It may be a good idea to identify bloggers as Compassion Staff, Sponsor, etc.

    I most enjoy sponsors of the LDP students, with the story of how they came into the Compassion project, accepted Christ, and worked to be accepted into the LDP program.

    I will also say that I would prefer to see entries that are a little more brief. I check the blog every day, but sometimes don’t have time to read the whole entry. I always intend to come back and read it later but don’t always manage to get it done. I understand, this isn’t always possible to tell the story.

    • Apr 13, 2010
      at 3:44 pm

      Michael,

      Yes indeed. Our blog posts are long. This one in particular. That guy just went on and on. :-)

      An improvement that more clearly identifies the relationship our blog authors have with Compassion will be coming soon. For now, the explanation is buried on the About Our Contributors page.

  27. Nancy White
    Apr 12, 2010
    at 9:24 pm

    I read most of the blogs. They are always read when about a country of interest to me (where my children live). Crises can be found on the Home page. I just joined the OC and read above how I can learn more there. Great!
    This blog question was very timely for me. I am getting a bit concerned with the cost to sponsor a child. Where is the money going that isn’t going to the children? I would hate to think it is for a glossier overedited over advertising or staff bloat to make sponsors feel better. Sorry for the sour note. I have been sonsoring for several years 6 – 7 children. I love their letters and the poor translations I can get through and LOVE and Need for their authenticity. Please do not edit it out!! Blessedly, I have several helper translators of each language my children speak in this area. So I read the translation then my friends read what is really written and what it means in that culture. Quite different and more real. I feel I am really touching the lives of most of my sponsored children. And, I know who I need to pray for about what. I feel much closer to my children!! Their experssions of love and thanks and needs and care are different from ours. Understanding cultral differences are very important to my connection with my children. The last few blogs on topics and issues like abuse, general issues are interestiing!I was glad you were aware. My one child was dropped from Compassion due to the church not complying with Compassion’s goals. Conmfusing to me – Racliife in Brazil. Then there was a blog on that city spoecifically! It was perfect. So to summerize,(1)I personally am concerned with the the way of Compassion’s growth/money use. Very glad more are being spoonssored of course!! (2) more cultural blogs for better understanding of what my children are really saying and how I can commubnicate effectively. (3)project videos are rreally fun. Thanks!!

    • Apr 13, 2010
      at 3:48 pm

      Nancy,

      I’ll try to get a blog post written that breaks down how each dollar of the $38 you spend is used for your child.

  28. Apr 12, 2010
    at 10:14 pm

    First of all, I would like to say you all do a wonderful job!

    I will agree with many before me and say that I really appreciate information specific to a country. Stories that give us a peak into what the children’s lives may look like…like the recent post about Easter in Bangladesh from 2 children’s points of view.

    I was able to go on a Compassion tour to India, and one thing that blew me away was the relationship between the projects and the churches, and how they partner to really reach the whole community. For example, one church we visited was able to find out the biggest issues facing their community (alchoholism, suicide, depression) and connect to families through the project, and then as a church body create outreaches to tackle those issues. It really is a beautiful partnership! I would love to hear more ways they are working together.

    And last but not least…I love when you share pictures of children reading letters from their sponsors. Thats probably my favorite :)

    Shalom!

  29. Apr 13, 2010
    at 5:30 pm

    There are so many posts that I’ve loved. Definitely the ones featuring individual children and their family stories are wonderful. I also like hearing from workers in the different projects – pastors, translators, child care workers, any of them. They give me a glimpse into what makes a Compassion project unique and successful. The interviews with Moody Scholars and their perspectives on sponsorship, opportunities and ways to connect have been invaluable.

    I know Compassion Bloggers have a monthly prayer request but something like that even weekly on this site would be helpful to me in my prayer life.

    When there are daily blog posts by Compassion teams visiting other countries, I am tuned in to read every single one of them! I love that feature and it connects me to the visiting country and my own sponsored children so, so much.

    I’d like to hear about more opportunities similar to the bicycle that was given to a father in India via donations from readers. Maybe that could lead to semi-annual special projects shared among different areas.

    Suggestions from other comments are excellent. And you are really doing a great job of connecting us with Compassion, children and events around the world. I love the daily posts. Praise to God to all staff for your dedication to God’s work via Compassion.

  30. Michael Hailey
    Apr 13, 2010
    at 6:11 pm

    I think it would be great to read about the impact of the sponsor-written letters on the children. That may seem a bit boring to some, but it is so very important to the child, and I think being able to demonstrate that importance might encourage more of us to become more consistent in our correspondence. I’ve had several sponsors tell me that they receive letters from their children, but just haven’t gotten around to responding.

    I’ll never forget the face of a little girl at one of the projects I visited in Bolivia. One of the Advocates in our group asked how many children in this particular classroom (there were about 20 children present) were sponsored. All of them raised their hands. She went on to ask how many receive letters from their sponsors. Nineteen hands quickly and excitedly rose; one set of eyes were downcast. We were then told that she had been sponsored for 2 years, and had not received any letters from her sponsor. It broke my heart.

  31. amy
    Apr 13, 2010
    at 11:10 pm

    The blog posts are all excellent-thank you. I would love to see more:
    1. Individual child stories, preferably told by the child themself- maybe Q & A format if younger child.
    2. Detailed info on activities at individual child centres. Maybe ‘An afternoon in the life of …. Child Development Centre’. Lots of these please.
    3. Outline of the curriculum taught, especially detail on the spiritual curriculum followed. I would like to have an understanding of what parts of the Bible the kids are taught and at what age.
    4. More blog trips- the Kenya one was amazing.
    5. More articles by sponsored children on how to be good sponsors. Specific things that are good to say/write/do etc.
    Thank you.

  32. geri
    Apr 14, 2010
    at 1:54 am

    I’d like to hear more about children with disabilities. I sponsor a child with hearing loss and worry about her future, medical care etc. I’d also love to hear more about the Compassion supported residential homes for children – daily routines, why the children are there what happens when they leave etc. Cultural information about countries such as typical foods, dress, festivals, languages, schooling systems, climate and just daily life is also interesting.

  33. Sarah
    Apr 14, 2010
    at 5:55 am

    Chris, thank you for doing such a wonderful job. The first thing I do every morning is read the newest Compassion blog! I wonder if it might be possible to have regional/country specific entries on the history/culture/politics of the various areas. I speak Spanish and am able to read the Nicaraguan newspaper online. My sponsored child loves when I ask her about things I have read in the newspaper. Reading the paper is time consuming, though, and most sponsors do not speak the language of their sponsored children. It would be great to be able to read about the food/the music/festivals, etc. and then be able to connect with the kids through age appropriate, specific questions.
    Thanks again for all you do!

  34. Apr 14, 2010
    at 4:16 pm

    Thank you Chris for answering about my concerns about why more money is going to Compassion lately (now 20 cents of every dollar). That would help me.
    I was very interested in an idea from Amy on 4/13 about children writing about how to be a better sponsor. That would be very helpful. Thank you!

  35. Amy
    Apr 15, 2010
    at 5:34 am

    I only skimmed through the first few comments, so this may already have been mentioned. :) I really like the posts that tell about a specific need within Compassion and then give us a chance to help (like Alexander and his heart surgery . . . I think Chris G. mentioned he would work on getting an update on him already). I shared the blog post about Alexander with a friend who hadn’t been involved with Compassion previously, and she was so moved that she contributed to the fund to help him. Now she’s talking about wanting to sponsor a child. :)

    I think being able to attach a face and a story with a specific need really helps us to connect with Compassion’s ministry. Having a shared purpose like that also helps build community among the blog readers.

    • Apr 15, 2010
      at 8:50 am

      Amy,

      There’s an update on Alexander a few comments up. I also left an update (via a comment) on the original post about Alexander.

  36. Apr 15, 2010
    at 5:31 pm

    There is a conversation going on over at OurCompassion about the persecuted church. I am not sure if this link will work or not, but here goes:

    http://www.ourcompassion.org/default.aspx?p=blog&id=7102626528248359198

    Anyways, we were thinking that a lot of people may be interested in knowing about persecution going on around our children, how it effects the projects and the staff and our kids, and basically just ways to pray specifically for these areas!

    Thanks!

  37. Roma Lea Short
    Apr 16, 2010
    at 5:25 am

    I love to read all the blogs. I go in the Archives and read them, too. The one thing I would like more information on is the vocational training that the older children receive. Two of my children are 15 years old now, and I have become more concerned about what type of job they will be able to find when they graduate from the Compassion program. Blogs on specific vocational training programs would be great. Thanks

  38. Apr 16, 2010
    at 6:25 am

    I have really enjoyed the posts from the field. From how holidays are celebrated in different countries to the report on what a day at a child development center looks like. Those are great and help me to understand how Compassion interacts with the children I support.

  39. Apr 16, 2010
    at 1:29 pm

    Chris,

    After seeing so many responses, I just want to say thank you for being so willing to help us stay connected to our kids. It is so much feedback, but it was apparent how much we as sponsors love our kids and really want a relationship with them and not just the $38. Everyone at Compassion is doing a great job!

  40. Amy
    Apr 24, 2010
    at 8:03 pm

    Just thought of this one — I’d love to read more about correspondence sponsors. I write to a little boy in Africa, in addition to the two boys I sponsor, because his sponsor does not write. I’d be interested to find out the experiences of other correspondence sponsors, and what has happened to their relationships with the kids through the years.

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