They are a core component of the Compassion sponsor/child relationship.
When we visited Theresia on Saturday, she had a 9×12 manila envelope, damp from the stick and mud home she lived in, full of every letter and every picture we sent her over the years.
She pointed to every person in every picture and named them correctly.
Being here this week, I have seen how much the children cling to our words. They study our pictures. They are introduced to a world outside of what they know.
One graduated child told us that if he could ask his sponsor anything he would ask about his cat. Obviously his sponsor had written quite a bit about their pet cat and this young man just couldn’t understand the concept of living with an animal in your house. We laughed with him at his confusion, but we celebrated with him all that his sponsor added to his life.
Today we visited the country office. This is the headquarters of Compassion in Tanzania. Every person we met was absolutely committed to releasing children from poverty. We were astounded at their commitment to their mission and vision.
We also learned that this is where the letters go. The ones you write to your child and the ones your child writes to you both arrive in the country office where they are translated and then sent on.
10 people process an average of 1000 letters a week in the Compassion Country Office in Tanzania. They are all handled individually.
When a sponsor sends a letter, it first arrives in the USA office located in Colorado Springs, Colorado. Then it is sent on to the country office where it is translated. After it is translated, it is sorted into a mailbox for the Compassion Center it needs to go to (there are 270 Compassion Centers in Tanzania!).
I loved getting to see the process in action today. I know there are over 50 moms from Hearts at Home who have sponsored kids in Tanzania… if that’s you and you’ve recently written your child, I might have seen your letter being processed!
There are two ways to do a letter: online and mailed. We usually send them both ways to our sponsored child in Honduras. Online is very convenient and photos can be attached just like an email. However, I like to sent a letter in the mail when I can because I love to enclose stickers for him to use. One of the country office workers said that you can also send cards and very flat books that fit in an envelope.
They cherish every word.
I saw it with my very own eyes.