Thinking of her childhood home, one thing stands out for Jéssica.
“We could see the stars at night,” she said.
That was only because the roof on her home was so bad she could see the sky through the holes.
Jéssica, now 24, lives with her parents and four siblings in Mexico. And she remembers finances were tight at home.
“I could not have things that I wanted and needed,” she explained. “I recycled notebooks, school supplies, school bags and anything I could for the following year.”
While her friends were out having fun, Jéssica could be found packing groceries at the local supermarket, earning $6 USD on a good day, to help her parents make ends meet. She was just 13.
But something changed six years ago.
David became her sponsor.
By Elizabeth Alex
From the distance, Manchay, Peru appears dirty and desolate.
Small and sometimes rickety houses, cheerfully painted in lilac and blue sit at the base of what appear to be mountains made of dust and rock. Manchay is covered in haze.
But what Manchay lacks in aesthetics, it makes up for in smiles.
Like the big grin on 5-year-old Carlos’ face.
Q. I sent my sponsored child some gifts in the mail (using a CFCA-approved mailing package and everything), but I never received any thank-you letters from her or any acknowledgement of my gift. How do I know she received it?
A. Depending on when you sent the item, an acknowledgment letter may have crossed in the mail.
If much time has passed, however, and you still havenít heard from your friend, try sending a letter asking her to let you know if she received your gifts. Make sure you describe the items and when you mailed them.
It’s also important to remember that cultural expectations for correspondence vary from country to country. CFCA works in many areas where oral traditions are the main way of communicating. Your friend may not have grown up with thank-you cards or other kinds of written correspondence.
Read the answer to a related Ask Sponsor Services question: Why do my child’s letters sound so impersonal?
A good tip when sending a gift to your friend: Include a note asking her to write you and let you know if she received your gift.
And remember, by following CFCA’s mailing guidelines, you lower the risk of the item becoming lost or stolen in the mail.
For some small gift ideas, check out 18 small gift ideas to send to your sponsored friend.
The post is titled “Blogging for a Purpose” by Leslie Reese.
After six years of CFCA sponsorship, Leslie has graciously shared her experience on her blog and plans to dedicate a page to CFCA. Here’s an excerpt from her post:
I decided to sponsor a child from Guatemala. She was 12 years old at the time. At that moment, I felt like I had done my good deed for the day. Little did I know, I was not just changing the life of this child, but my own life as well. It wasn’t long before I was receiving letters and photos of my newly sponsored child. It was wonderful to watch her progress and I was overwhelmed with the gratitude that she expressed in each letter that was sent. I knew I was making a difference.
I am extremely impressed by the work that CFCA does and I am thrilled to be a part of such a wonderful organization. In an effort to collaborate with the CFCA community, I will be dedicating a page on my blog specifically to this foundation. I plan to bring you inspiring stories and information about the many people involved. I will be sharing special recipes from the countries where our sponsored friends live.
Read the full blog post ó Leslie Reese: Blogging for a Purpose
Thank you for your support, Leslie.
We invite you to click on Leslie’s post and leave a comment for her. This helps show our support for her efforts to tell others about CFCA’s work!
My name is Andres, and I have been sponsored for six years through CFCA in Colombia.
My father works as a bricklayer and my mother is a housekeeper. My father works by seasons, and sometimes we do not have any income to sustain our family.
One day I had a great idea. I went with my mother to the CFCA office where she met with her mothers group. I like to go and help her during the meetings. At the meeting, I met a mother who knows how to make crafts. She was making many things with plastic, and I was very curious about it. Read more of Andres’ story
Recently we invited our readers to vote on which was our best blog post of 2012.
All of the posts were wonderful, but as always, there had to be a winner.
ëWhy I believe in sponsorshipí by Kristin Littrell, CFCA correspondent, came in first place.
A close second (with only 4 votes making the difference) was from CFCA writer/editor, Veronica Batton with 18 small gift ideas to send in your Christmas card.
In third place was Diego in Colombia gets his bicycle.
Thanks, again, to everyone who responded to our survey.
Happy New Year, and we hope 2013 brings more and even better stories to the CFCA community!
Patheos.com – ‘A Good Measure’ by Lisa Hendey
It has been such a blessing to partner with Lisa Hendey, who began featuring a monthly invitation on CatholicMom.com in 2012†to consider sponsoring a friend through CFCA. Here’s an excerpt from her recent blog post about this partnership:
In sponsoring a CFCA friend, you donít simply throw a dollar per day at a problemÖ you enter into a real dialogue with a real person. The family who adopts little Joseph this month will provide for some of his financial needs, but they will also pray with him, hear regular updates from him via personal letters and photos, and hopefully build a relationship that will bless their own family as much as it blesses Joseph.
We’ve told you the stories and showed you the pictures, but it’s still hard to translate the actual joy experienced on a CFCA awareness trip.
Zena Weist is a digital marketing professional, blogger, mom, CFCA social media advisory board member and now a CFCA awareness trip traveler!
On Dec. 26, Zena will embark on a weeklong trip to Guatemala to meet her 18-year-old sponsored friend, Angelica.
This is Zena’s first trip to visit her sponsored friend, and she plans on sharing as much information as she can with us while she is there. Read more
We want to hear from you! Out of these top blog posts for 2012, which would you consider the No. 1 post?
The nominations are:
“That, in a nutshell, is why I believe in sponsorship. Because thatís what sponsorship does: It creates relationships that defy geographic, cultural or socioeconomic boundaries. It connects a mom in the U.S. with a young girl in Haiti in such profound ways that my friend was remembering and bragging on Nirhva’s birthday, just like she would her own daughter’s.”
Veronica from CFCA explores creative ways to send a little something to your sponsored friend, something that fits in a package no larger than 9 by 12 inches, weighs less than a pound and is less than an inch thick.