sponsor a child

Dreams of Cats and Beds

“I dream of having my own bed. I’d like to be able to sit around a real table to eat with my mother and my siblings in a real dining room.”

What are your dreams? I dream of owning my own home and having a cat. Of course I’d end up filling Instagram with cat photos so it’s probably best for my friends and family I don’t currently own one. 15 year-old Erica’s dreams are simpler.

“I dream of having my own bed. I’d like to be able to sit around a real table to eat with my mother and my siblings in a real dining room. And I dream of becoming a doctor in order to help my mother and serve people who really need help,” Erica says.

15 year-old Erica lives in Riobamba, a city built on the slopes of the Chimborazo volcano in Ecuador. She lives with her four siblings and her single mother in a 10-square-metre room. They have a mattress on the floor which serves as a desk to do homework on, a table for the days they actually have a meal to eat and as a bed for all six of them to sleep on together.

Growing up, there were days when there was no money for food and Erica would go door-to-door, begging for food or money. When Erica was six, her mother Laura was able to enrol her into the local Compassion project where she was sponsored.

Erica’s face lights up when she talks about her sponsor. “He’s 29 and he’s told me about his girlfriend and his brother. I like getting his letters, because I feel I’m important to him and he loves me. Someday I’d like to meet him in person and give him a hug, because somehow I already feel I know him,” she says with a big smile.

When asked about the difference sponsorship has made, Laura replies, “My children have a place to go in the afternoon. They get help with their homework, they get spiritual guidance, and they’re safe.” She adds, “They’ve helped me with food, with school uniforms and shoes, with school supplies and even with medicine when the children have been sick.”

Thanks to the sacrificial support of her sponsor, Erica is receiving all the benefits of sponsorship including education which will lead to greater opportunities. Which means she has the chance of achieving her dream of one day having her own bed. And her dream makes me appreciate my own bed that little bit more.

Words by Roz Walsh with Cecilia Yepez

WORDS : Roz Walsh

PHOTOS : Compassion UK

Article Comments


Leave a comment

Leave A Comment

Leave A Comment



Sponsor Selfie Day: Live Feed

This Saturday, Compassion sponsors are uniting to share stories about the difference they’re making to children in poverty. Be inspired and join the global movement today!



My Alopecia Story: How Poverty Led to Hair Loss

“I had a weakness which became my strength.”


10 Friendship Quotes To Share On International Friendship Day

Friendship quotes to enjoy and share with loved ones.


Liseth’s Story: “I Was Blind But God Gave Me New Eyes”

Doctors told Liseth she was going blind. But then her Compassion project stepped in to provide sight-saving medical care.


Lift Up the Hopes and Dreams of 3 Children Who Need Your Prayers Today

Take a moment to pray for Emilda, Julius and Brisa, three children who are working hard to achieve their hopes and dreams.



35 Children Quotes to Warm Your Heart

Enjoy this collection of famous quotes about children. Let these wise words remind you how precious kids are!



9 Photos of Children in Poverty With Their Most Prized Possession

From a buffalo to a Bible, we asked children what items they valued most.


Sponsor a Child in Africa: Empower Them to Overcome Poverty

You can give a child in need vital stability and security.


What is Poverty? The Definition of Poverty and How You Can Help

Poverty is far more complex than a number. Poverty has a face and a name.



The Boy Who Was Bullied Because of a Lack of Water

Imagine living without running water. Could you survive a day, a week, or even a month? How about 19 years?


Modern Day Miracles: 5 Stories of Healing and Hope

Enjoy these stories of remarkable children overcoming the odds.


How Relentless Love Stopped a Family From Falling Apart

Victor’s Compassion folder kept his family together during a time of crisis.