A Special Birthday Mailing

This past weekend, someone pretty special to us had her 19th birthday.

We have known this young lady for almost 8 years.

I am the only one in our family who has met her.

She lives approximately 3,665 miles from us on another continent.

Over the last 8 years, we have exchanged a lot of letters back and forth.

Who is this young lady?

Lina, our Compassion sponsored child

This is Lina! Our Compassion sponsored child who lives in Colombia.

So what is the special birthday mailing I sent to her?

Since we have received photo updates of her over the past 8 years, plus I have photos from my trip to Colombia 3 years ago, I created this photo page using Canva:

Lina's Special Birthday Mailing

I used the online letter writing tool in my Compassion account to send a birthday card to Lina. Then I uploaded this image to the card as a full page photo. I sure hope she enjoys seeing how much she has grown over the past 8 years!

If you sponsor Compassion children, what special things do you like to send to your sponsored child for their birthday?

Short and Sweet

When was the last time you received a note in the mail? In and amongst the junk mail and bills, our mail boxes rarely are filled with notes and letters from friends and relatives. We live in a world where encouragement and praise can be received on a daily basis by those who we live life with.

But imagine you live in a world where you have no mail box.

Imagine you live in a world where there are no house numbers and street names.

Imagine you live in a world where no one gives you encouragement and praise.

Many of our Compassion sponsored children live in areas where it is very rare for them to receive mail of any kind.

But you can change all that!

Just yesterday, reading the Compassion blog, I was reminded how simple it is for me to set aside time to write a short and sweet note to the children we sponsor.

Here is what I wrote to Lina yesterday:

Hello Lina, 

I hope you are doing well! I was thinking about you today, so I decided to write to you to remind you how special you are to God. He loves you and is always watching over you.

Here is a question for you: If you could invent one thing to make life easier, what would it be?

I encourage you to spend time reading your Bible every day, learning more about God and His plan for you. Matthew 5:16 would be a good verse to read.

Love and hugs to you!

Short and sweet, and it didn't take much time for me to write this to her either.

Since I know the kids love receiving photos, I included this with the letter:

Click on the link    here    to download and add this image to your next letter

Click on the link here to download and add this image to your next letter

So what are you waiting for? Will you write a short and sweet letter to your Compassion children right now?

All About Me

Are you a new Compassion sponsor? Or have you added a new sponsored child to your family?

One of the first letters we receive from our Compassion sponsored children is an "All About Me" page where they share some of their favorite things. I loved receiving Emerson's first letter this past week. Emerson is our newest Compassion child. We added him to our Compassion family when I was in El Salvador in February. I didn't have a chance to meet him while I was there, but I am looking forward to getting to know him through letter writing.

Emerson from El Salvador

In his letter he shared that his favorite game is soccer, his favorite food is beef and chicken, and his favorite color is blue.

So I thought, what if I create a page sharing some of my favorite things to send to him?

Using Canva, I created this page to send to Emerson:

All About Me page

The page was fairly easy to create. I chose a background and selected a color that I liked. Then I started adding boxes and changed the opacity so the boxes ended up being a light blue. Next, I added photos and text to the boxes with some of my favorite things. Then I saved the creation as a jpeg which makes it easy to add to an online Compassion letter.

When you write a letter or send a card to your sponsored child, you can upload a full page 'photo' like this to your letter or card. 

Our sponsored children want to know more about us and what are lives are like where we live. I sure hope Emerson enjoys learning some of these things about me.

What have you shared with your sponsored child lately?

Sending Hope

You have been thinking about your Compassion child.

It has been a while since you received your last letter...and it has been quite a few months since you wrote your last letter.

You know you should write, but sometimes you just are not sure what to write.

Corresponding with a child growing up in extreme poverty is not like sending a text to a family member.

Corresponding with a child growing up in extreme poverty is not like commenting on a friend's Facebook post.

Corresponding with a child growing up in extreme poverty is not for what I get out of it.

Corresponding with a child growing up in extreme poverty is hard to do.

But corresponding with a child growing up in extreme poverty is an important part of building a relationship with that child.

When you find yourself at a loss for words when writing to your sponsored child, remember that all we really need to do is send them encouraging words.

Share a Bible verse.

Send a photo.

Click on this   link   to add this verse image to your next letter

Click on this link to add this verse image to your next letter

Tell the child that you love them.

Tell the child that God loves them.

It really is this simple to send hope.

What will you write in your next letter?

Using Snapchat for Compassion Letters

I have to admit, I was a little hesitant to add one more social media channel to my online presence. But when Compassion took a couple of young men to Bolivia this summer, I wanted to be able to follow along. So I reluctantly started a Snapchat account. I did enjoy seeing a small glimpse of Compassion in Bolivia, but I wasn't really sure if I would continue using Snapchat once the trip was over.

Then, I learned this really neat thing about Snapchat that would make sending photos with letters to our sponsored children a bit more special. Compassion recently updated their list of things that can be sent with letters, so I want to make good use of my time and resources but still be creative with what I can send.

Last month, I was in St. Louis and saw the Gateway Arch for the first time. Now, I could just send a photo of the arch along with my next letter...

Gateway Arch in St. Louis

...but by applying a Snapchat filter to the photo, I can send them this photo instead...

Gateway Arch in St. Louis

I love that this looks just like a postcard!

And instead of sending a small postcard, I can attach this photo to a letter as a full 8 1/2 x 11-inch photo! The easiest way to do this is by using the Compassion app or writing a letter online.  It will be fun to visit other locations and share more fun Snapchat photos with our sponsored children.

What creative things have you been mailing to your Compassion sponsored children lately?