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Girls reading letters in Togo

When will I receive a letter from my sponsored child?

Your letters are important. They have the power to communicate, “You are known and loved.” They hold the power to build a relationship between two people on opposite sides of the world. Because your letters are cherished, we want to make sure the processing and translation is done with excellence.

how to write a letter to your sponsored child

One of the greatest frustrations amongst sponsors and their sponsored children was the length of time it took to receive a letter. This was because the average letter was taking three months to arrive.

To resolve this, we launched a new digital letter system in 2016. Despite some challenges along the way, we’re excited to see digital letter delivery become increasingly faster. Today, the average digital letter takes 30 days from being written to arriving in your inbox. In some cases, letters are reaching sponsors within 7 days!

Why do the physical copies of my letters take longer?

Currently, your sponsored child’s letters are scanned and a digital copy sent straight away. This is followed by the original letter which is posted from the country where your sponsored child lives. Shipping letters internationally takes time, meaning there are often delays between the two.

How often will my sponsored child write?

Like us, sponsored children become discouraged if they don’t receive a reply when they write a letter. To help manage this, children are asked to write two letters per year.

When you send a message to your sponsored child, they’ll also write back. We call these reciprocal letters and you may receive up to six replies per year, depending how often you write.

If you haven’t heard from your sponsored child recently we’d love to encourage you to send them a message if you haven’t done so for a while. This may help ensure you receive a letter soon.

What difference do my letters make?

Your letters make a powerful difference to your sponsored child. Independent research shows that receiving two letters a year boosts your sponsored child’s self-esteem.

But don’t just take our word for it, let’s hear the difference your letters make from the children who receive them.

Joan, Uganda

“What my sponsor has told me has changed my life… they have encouraged me to read the Bible; this has changed my life! Even reading books so that I can improve on my academics which has also helped me.

“Children include me, we feel happy when our sponsors write letters to us because it lets us know that they care about us and they also love us. I encourage those who don’t write to their children, I encourage them to write to them because they also want to feel special.”

Victor, El Salvador

“My sponsor sends me so many letters and photos they can’t fit in two hands!”

Maria, Peru

“[My sponsor’s] words were so timely they lifted me up... I am thankful to my sponsor because they make my heart really happy. Every time I receive a letter from them, I thank God for their lives.

Maria helping with cooking

Through their letters, they have taught me many things; for example, I didn’t use to pray as I pray now. My sponsor always prays for me, and I have learned to pray for my dad as well. I prayed that my father will come to Jesus.”

Project staff and volunteers who help distribute the letters also testify to the difference they make. Pastor Gad, pastor of Kabindi Church, Uganda, explains:

“We thank God for supporters who are so loving, who keep writing to their supported children, giving them encouraging words, scriptures and assuring them of their love. Children become excited whenever they receive letters from their supporters. They look forward to receiving the letters. They look forward to the time of writing back and sharing how they feel about them.”

What should I write in the messages I send?

It’s easy to turn letter writing into a big thing for which we need to set a lot of time aside. But this means we never get around to it. Instead, think about sending a simple message, which is full of encouragement. Here’s some ideas of what to say:

  • Tell your sponsored child what you, your family or friends are up to.
  • Share your favourite Bible story or verse.
  • Mention where you live, what the weather is like or what season it is.
  • Remind your child that you pray for him or her regularly.
  • Share your prayer requests and praise reports.

Visit our blog and discover more awesome ideas to help you overcome writers’ block

 

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