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PLUSES AND MINUSES OF SPONSORSHIP
8 January 2011
I received this cool photo of Anjali today. Her birthday is in September and I had sent a check as a gift. She writes that she bought "two frocks" and that she likes yellow and white.
It's strange to realize that I have been sponsoring this little Indian (from India) girl for nearly three years. Two and a half years, actually.
What is odder, I guess, is that of the kids I either sponsor or write to because their sponsors don't, she is one of the kids that I know the least.
Writing is obviously not her strong suit. At first I attributed it to her age, but she's 11 now so that should not be the problem.
I think part of it has to do with the person who translates her letters, who writes as if she were transcribing an interview. I think every letter I have received from her has been pretty much the same. And every sentence begins with "She says..."
Nonetheless, the purpose of sponsoring a child is not to make me happy, but to help better that child's life.
For a relationship with sponsored children, I have Fred and Shallon, both of whom are not children for whom I contribute money, but children to whom I write. Fred doesn't write his letters, but his mother writes long newsy letters and we have as much of a dialog going as you can get when it takes 3 months for each of us to get the other's letter. It also helps that Lydia (Fred's mother) writes in fluent English.
Shallon, from Uganda, is also someone with whom I am beginning to make a deeper relationship. She also writes in English, so the letters don't have to go through a translator. She writes very long letters and our corrrespondence begins to sound like...well...a correspondence.
Pablo, from Brasil writes rarely. His letters are fun, but I almost never hear from him. He's a Brasilian boy. No surprise here! I have dealt with Brasilian males for a very long time.
And I also almost never hear from Briana. But she is in Haiti and I don't even want to think about the problems that groups helping children are going through in Haiti. Fortunately, Briana is in the north of Haiti, which seems to have escaped earthquake, hurricane and cholera problems, but I think that letters go through the main office Port au Prince, which is ground zero for all of the social and health problems in that country, so I'm just happy if anything arrives.
And then there is Esther, from Indonesia. She's kind of half-and-half about writing, but I don't yet have a feel for her, as she was the last of the children to be added to my correspondence roster.
A disappointment is Clarisse, from Rwanda, whom I am sponsoring through Women to Women. I was under the impression that I would hear something from her so I would know something about her, but it's been months and emails to the group have been yielded nothing. I have no concerns about where my funds are being spent. I believe Women to Women is a reputable organization, but I've been disappointed.
Again, the purpose was not to make me feel good, but to
provide support to women who have been affected by war in their countries so that they can
move forward and be able to live independently and support themselves and their families.
I continue to write what I hope are supportive messages to her, but I am
disappointed that it seems like I am writing to a brick wall. When my period of
support for her ends, I may use that money to support another child at Compassion, Intl.
PHOTO OF THE DAY
I just got this post card through Postcrossing.