Why I speak up for children in poverty

"3 reasons why I'm using my voice to change lives."

We caught up with Compassion Volunteer, Angela Axelby, to hear why she’s passionate about advocating on behalf of children in poverty: 

Meeting mothers from the Child Survival Programme

1. I’ve seen the difference sponsorship makes

Last year, I visited Uganda and I was blown away by the quality of Compassion’s work – I was so struck by the completeness of care the children are given.

We saw it over and over again with those we met. We had an evening with a Compassion graduate called Richmond. I asked him about the difference sponsorship makes and he explained this: When you’re 9-years-old and you get a sponsor, you think that the biggest difference is physical. Suddenly you have food, schooling and you’re taken to the doctor. But reflecting now, the greatest difference is spiritual. So many of the children come to know Christ through the Compassion programme. This changes you in the long term! When people are given a physical release from poverty, the human instinct is to get as far away from your background as you can and go and achieve. But if you come to know Christ, you gain a heart for the local church. Huge numbers of Compassion graduates are changing their communities. It’s an incredible ripple effect.

2. I felt compelled to do more

Returning from Uganda, I felt compelled to do more to help children in poverty. I had the verse from Proverbs 31:8 on my mind! “Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute. Speak up and judge fairly; defend the rights of the poor and needy.” I knew I needed to speak up and speak out.

3. It’s easier than I thought

When I was reflecting on wanting to do more, I thought, I don’t have time to go to exhibitions, but I can stand up in church. I’ve since spoken about Compassion in a main service and at a mission evening. And I’ve actually found it easier than I thought. You just explain from the heart why you sponsor and what it means for your sponsored children.

You’ve got the backing of Compassion and the prayer support. Plus you don’t need to plan much as Compassion has done it for you. The video clips are excellent. I find you just need to show one and then introduce children who need sponsoring. God speaks through those photos!

Angela Axelby

Words by Angela Axelby


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