When it comes to releasing children from poverty, we have lots of research and data. We can implement what have been proven to be the most effective methods for poverty alleviation. But separated from detailed cultural context, without relationships with community members, and without walking its streets, we are limited in our ability to meet the unique needs of any given community.
This is why we partner with local churches.
We believe it is through the local church that God intends to rescue His people, both now and for eternity.
We partner with pastors who have a proven track record of being the hands and feet of Jesus in their communities. Men and women whose hearts break for the vulnerable children and families they know by name. Pastors who know the history of their community and are actively working to improve its well-being and meet critical needs.
But because their churches are located in the heart of impoverished communities, these pastors are rarely equipped to the extent they need.
That is why we partner with you.
When a church becomes a Compassion partner, they begin by implementing our Child Sponsorship Development Program to provide holistic care for the children in their community. But each community is unique and has unique challenges. So, in addition to child sponsorship, we also work with the church to identify other critical needs to address the health of the children and families under their care.
As your financial support begins pouring in by sponsoring a child or by giving gifts to meet critical needs, pastors are able to expand their ministry and effectiveness exponentially. The resources, support and prayers you provide make it possible for real, lasting change to be a reality in some of the darkest neighborhoods on Earth.
Here are seven surprising things your support makes possible … straight from the pastors of our church partners themselves!
1. Income-generation Training
“Last year, Compassion provided us with training in teaching the Word of God to children. The training has resulted in many children coming to know the Lord. We have also been able to provide skills development workshops in subjects like cosmetology, cellphone repair, baking and other vocations. The children, and their parents, are learning to use their God-given talents to earn an income for their families. This creates a feeling of self-worth and enables them to be released from poverty, in Jesus’ name.”
— Pastor Jose Antonio Alguera Palma | Church of the Nazarene, Fuente de Vida | Managua, Nicaragua
2. Meeting Urgent Needs
“Through the consistent support of our center, from sponsor[s] like you, and the efforts of the program workers and volunteers, we have seen God doing a marvelous work in the community. We were able to acquire a water tank, which will provide clean water for much of the community. The government has worked with us to provide more rights and equal status for the different people in the community.”
— Pastor Deeporwa | Baan Mae Sa Rit Church | Northern Region, Thailand
3. Disaster Relief
“Our greatest joy has been receiving support in the most difficult moments of this year. We have experienced many natural disasters. Through Compassion, and the help of government institutions, we were able to receive much-needed food by helicopter. The community expressed great joy when we were able to distribute food and other supplies.”
— Pastor Hector Chuquipoma Reyes | Bethel Church, Assemblies of God | Piura Region, Peru
4. Training and Counseling for Parents and Caregivers
“Through your support, caregivers are taught skills in parenting, malaria prevention and food hygiene. Your gifts have also relieved serious food shortages as we were able to take food into the community, where people were starving. Thank you for all these blessings.”
— Pastor Wafula Godfrey | Businywa Church of God of East Africa | Eastern Uganda
5. Giving Back to the Community
“One of my greatest joys is seeing teenagers involved in activities such as Bible camps, where they are able to learn more about God. Additionally, we train them in community service. They are caring for the sick, visiting hospitals, shelters, nursing homes, as well as cleaning streets, parks and gardens in our community. The community is learning to appreciate these youth, children whom [sic] were once ignored and neglected.”
— Pastor María Ana Luisa Cruz Jiménez | Iglesia Fe en Cristo | Minatitlan, Veracruz, Mexico
6. Advocating for the Rights of the Vulnerable
“Our children are also a blessing for our neighboring churches and our community. Some of the staff and tutors and children are from other denominations and churches. The staff of the local Compassion office, together with the local government, help us in many other ways. We work with the local government to deal with issues like child abuse and natural disasters. The center has sport activities like basketball, table tennis, volleyball, soccer. Periodically there are competitions between centers in reading, singing, making speeches, sports and art. These activities make the center popular in the community.”
— Pastor Theo Kumendong | Gereja Bethel Indonesia Church | North Halmahera, Indonesia
7. Making Dreams a Reality
“Several of our graduates are making significant impacts in our community. One of them completed a course of plumbing technology and is employed by the township authority in the Department of Water Services. She serves the community, the church and the other sponsored beneficiaries.
“Another youth graduated with a nursing diploma. Now, she helps with health assessments at the center.
“Still another child had the ambition to become a high school teacher. After she completed high school, she was selected to join the University of Dodoma to study education policy and planning. Currently, she is doing her field work at a government high school and will achieve her desired goal very soon.
“Another beneficiary had a dream to become a lawyer and advocate for the voiceless. She is currently pursuing a law degree at Ruaha University College. Without sponsors like you, none of these dreams could come true.”
— Pastor Elirehema Longio | Evangelical Lutheran Church, Pare Diocese | Kilimanjaro Region, Tanzania
As you can see, you are playing a crucial role in equipping the local church to shine brightly in dark places. In the words of Pastor W. Fernando, in Sri Lanka,
“Thank you so much for helping these vulnerable children. I wish to thank you from the bottom of my heart, for your contributions are great and very valuable to each child. We would not be able to do our work if it weren’t for your faithful support.”
Equip a Pastor in an Impoverished Community
One of the best ways to empower pastors who are serving in impoverished areas around the world is by sponsoring a child. Sponsorship directly connects a child and his or her family to the local church and the Compassion center. It’s there that he or she receives holistic care aimed at supporting good health, adequate family income, quality education and the chance to know God.
It also means that you are supporting the inspirational pastors around the world who are sparking real change in their communities.