Compassion International

Kelsie Jennings, Staff Editor

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Compassion means: “concern for the sufferings of others”.  Compassion International is a child-advocacy ministry that pairs compassionate people with those who are suffering from poverty. The ministry releases children from spiritual, economic, social, and physical poverty.  The goal is for each child to become a responsible and fulfilled adult.  The benefits and learning opportunities a child receives while in the Compassion organization has the power to change the child’s life.

The children being cared for recieve a safe, Christian environment to grow in, the opportunity to hear the gospel, an education, healthcare, hygiene training, food supply if necessary, personalized attention through the many volunteer workers, guidance, and love.  Today, Compassion works in 26 countries around the world.

A sponsor is someone who has decided to personally invest in a child’s life.  As a sponsor, it is encouraged to write your child as often as twice a year or more.  Better yet, the child will respond with their own letters so that a personal relationship is built with the child and the sponsor, no matter the distance. Each child is given only one sponsor and often wait hundreds of days to be chosen or given a sponsor.  Due to a child having to wait so long for a sponsor sometimes, the prayers, letters, and support are very important to the child.

When you sponsor a child, your contribution involves a monthly gift of thirty-eight dollars.  A major positive component about Compassion is that almost all of your money sent goes straight to benefitting the child, not the organization.  82.4% of the monthly gift goes to the child’s program.  78.9% of the child’s program funds goes to child development and care for the child’s need. The other 3.5% child program funds goes towards sponsor/donor ministries. The other overall 17.6% goes towards fundraising and administration.  About thirty-six of the thirty-eight dollars goes straight to the child’s needs.
Many people here in Southern Illinois are a part of Compassion and help support a child.  When a few were asked, “What is the biggest blessing you have received from sponsoring a child?” There were a variety of responses.  Donna Peterson, a long time supporter of her child, said “I think my greatest blessing is when I send money for her birthday or Christmas and she buys flour, sugar, soap and other necessities for her family and is so excited. I’m reminded of my many material blessings and often ungrateful attitude.  How spoiled am I?”

Cindy Bathon, the Compassion Organizer at Murdale Baptist Church, stated, “I love getting Rita’s pictures she draws and learning about her country.  She lives in Brazil. It’s fun to hear what she gets for birthdays and Christmas with the gift we send also. It’s a rewarding feeling knowing you are helping someone who has so many needs, not wants, needs.  Yet they are so happy and content. Makes me really feel sad for us over here that has so much and were still not content.”
Stephanie Tanner, a newer Compassion member, told, “The letters and pictures are the greatest treasures!  They always bring tears to my eyes when I open them. I feel so connected to our little boy, Alison, even though we are so far apart physically.  If I see a compassion envelope in the mail, I literally drop everything else to stop and open it up.  Compassion does such a great job keeping us connected with our child!”

Many people who sponsor a child not only get to impact a young life, but end up having their life impacted through the journey as well. Compassion has been helping those in need since 1952, and has helped 1,800,000+ children through sponsorships. Compassion is continuing to expand its outreach and opportunities to help as many children as they can to a life free of poverty.  


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Compassion International