Letter Writing: Lost In Translation

When we wrote the blog post “30 Adorable Things Kids Say,” it was no surprise we saw a great response from you on the blog and Facebook about the joy contained in the letters you receive from your little family member in his or her faraway land. Even through separation of distance and culture, you are developing a beautiful and genuine relationship.

The letters from the child you sponsor contain more than just words. So to make sure the cute things they say never get lost in translation, here is our latest infographic to use as a fun and handy translation guide!

lost in translation infographic blog

It’s time to write your next #compassionletter! You can create a handwritten letter to mail, write a letter online or from your smartphone.

Log in to My Account to write a letter online
How to Write a Letter from the New Compassion App

Check out these resources for letter-writing inspiration:

80 Letter-Writing Prompts
Letter Writing 101 Infographic
3 Great Ideas Letter-Writing Ideas for the New Delivery Process
Pinterest Board: Letter Writing Ideas


Infographic Illustrations: Luke Flowers

3 Comments |Add a comment

  1. Kathleen Young July 31, 2016

    This made me very sad to know we will not get to read what our sponsored child says. The actual words are precious and a glimpse into the child’s soul and culture. The translation feels canned and formal and devoid of personality. We are still waiting on our packet(s)–four children. We are already praying for our sponsored children and will write faithfully. But it is disheartening to know our personalities and theirs will remain largely hidden because the translators take such liberties so as to reinvent the messages. Is there any way the translators can make parenthetical interpretations instead of replacing what is actually said?

    1. Susan Sayler
      Susan Sayler August 1, 2016

      Kathleen, you are exactly correct that a child’s words are precious and we absolutely want you to be able to connect with your child. What we are trying to say in this blog post is that sometimes children in any culture say funny things and sometimes words or phrases don’t translate exactly so it may come out a little funny sometimes. This post was meant to be a light-hearted post about the nuances of language. That said, you will receive the original letter that your child wrote as well as the translation for each and every letter. This means that if you would like, you can read it in the original language.

  2. Stacy Craft March 11, 2015

    This was very helpful. Thank you so much for having this article. I love my child and do sometimes wonder what he means when he writes.

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