Elisabeth “Bizzy” Mellado’s first encounter with Compassion started with what she calls one of her dad’s “crazy ideas.”
Her father, Jimmy Mellado, president of the Willow Creek Association, had an unusual childhood. He lived in seven different countries, often surrounded by poverty. His father was an engineer who worked in communities with little infrastructure, helping to build roads and other construction projects.
Through his work at Willow Creek, Jimmy had learned of Compassion’s one-to-one sponsorship approach. He believed that this could be what his children needed to build a relationship with a child living in poverty.
So one night Jimmy sat his three children down at the computer to find a sponsored child, and after they narrowed their search to Guatemala, 14-year-old Bizzy and her siblings each looked for a child who shared their first name.
“At first, I really didn’t think a lot of it,” says Bizzy. “My parents took care of the actual sponsorship of Elisabeth, and I just wrote the letters. But when I started getting letters back from her, I began to realize that there was a real person on the other end.”
In August of 2010, that “person on the other end” became even more real to Bizzy and her family when they traveled to Guatemala to meet their sponsored children.
Bizzy recalls that when they visited Elisabeth’s home, they were shocked by what they found.
You can also view the Compassion Sunday 2012 – Bizzy’s Burden video on YouTube.