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Sunday, January 21, 2018

Letters with Photos!

Last week, I hit the sponsorship jackpot! It's (usually) a rare occasion to get extra, special photos attached to a letter and for some wonderful reason, I got three letters with extra photos attached! Two of the kiddos sent family photos "just because" and the third letter had a gift photo attached due to a financial sponsor sending a financial gift. As you can imagine, I am so happy for these photos!

Let's start with a letter from Nicol. She wrote an extra long letter, trailing onto a second page and then sent me three photos; a family photo, a photo of herself, and a photo of her and her brother wearing their Halloween costumes. 

Her letter started on the Festivals and Holidays template. 

Nicol is 5 years old and lives in Colombia. Her letter is dated November 28th, 2017. 

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1. Our national festivals/holidays are: Harvest Festival & Joropo Festival (music celebration)

2. My favorite national holiday is: Independence Day 

3. My family celebrates my favorite holiday by: It is a special day and we raise the flag. 

4. My favorite foods to eat during our festivals/holidays are: Rice with shredded beef 

5. At the project, we celebrate Christmas by: By eating flan & bunuelos (a white dough with cheese that is fried). 

6. My family celebrates the New Year by: With the whole family and friends. We give gifts. 

I greet you in the name of Jesus, dear Kayla. Nicol is very happy to write to you again, even though she cannot do it herself. She wants to tell you many things. To start, she is very happy. Next year, she is going to start school in January. She sends you many hugs and kisses and sends you the verse John 3:16. She also thanks you for looking out for her. In her community there are integrations to collect money to improve the neighborhood and help the poor people. It is very beautiful because they are a very close community. She tells you that is not sick, she is healthy. She wants to know; How are the children you are caring for? How are you? She sends you some photos. 




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Now, onto the amazing letter from my sweet girl Brisa. She writes her letter on the My Holiday/School Break template and also included some wonderful photos! She sent a photo of herself with her big sister and then a full family photo, including her new baby brother, who was just 10 days old when the photo was taken! 

Brisa is 7 years old and from Nicaragua. Her letter is dated November 24th, 2017. 

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1. My school breaks are in the months of: April (Holy Week) and December (Christmas). 

2. During my break, I usually go: Visit my family or I stay home 

3. My favorite food to eat during my school break is: Stuffed chicken 

4. What I like to do the most during my school break is: Play with my friends 

5. The person I like to be with during my school break is: My parents and cousins 


Good Afternoon Dear Sponsor Kayla,

Hello! Every day I am praying for, so that our Lord keeps you safe. I also want to tell you that I now have a Christmas/New Year school break and I passed my school year with excellent grade. I am very happy because Christmas is coming up soon and at the project, they will give us a nice gift. I am also very happy because I am writing this letter to you and I am sending you pictures of me with my family. My brother is just 10 days old. My mom helped me to write this letter. 

With Lots of Love,
Brisa




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And we'll round up this post with a letter from Marilyn. Her financial sponsor sent her a large gift and I got the blessing of seeing the photo of what was purchased! 

She also wrote me a letter about what she is learning at the project. It's a lovely template with lots of space for writing. 

Marilyn is 7 years old and lives in El Salvador. Her letter is dated December 12th, 2017. 

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1. In my project I am learning about: 

     Socio-Emotional: Show love and respect to family
     Spiritual: God created the animals of the Earth. Jacob's Ladder. 
     Cognitive: Water sources & Contamination and the food groups. 
     Physical: Edible plants and healthy foods 

2. The attitudes you have learned about being polite and kind: I appreciate when someone gives me something. I help pick up things that fall. 

3. What I like to learn most in the project: Praying and learning Bible stories. 

4. Three things you have learned about taking care of your body: I have to take a bath every day. I have to clean my ears. I have to brush my teeth. 

5. Write what you have been learning in the project about: 

     Jesus: He is the son of God. 
     Church: The church is the people that serve and worship God. 
     Family: I must be obedient to my parents. 

Dear Kayla, 

Marilyn greets you in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. She hopes that you are well and being blessed by God. She wants to tell you that she has three stuffed animals: one is a white bear, the other one is a duck, and the last one is a red heart. The duck's name is Campire. The heart's name is Pukita. The bear's name is Bear. Also, she thanks you for the gift you sent her. With it, she bought sugar, rice, oil, and chicken soup. She asks your prayers for protection for her and her family. Blessings. 

Until Soon,
Marilyn


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Saturday, January 20, 2018

SHARE ALL THE LETTERS!

I had a moment with the title, haha. One of my favorite memes ever (probably because it describes my brain/life perfectly) is this one:




So today, I will share all the letters! Well...a few of them, haha. You know what? Just read them! ;)

The first letter I share is a very first letter, for that matter! My very first letter from m boy Kelvin. He wrote on the My Dreams template. He sounds like a wonderful boy!

Kelvin is 7 years old and from Indonesia. He wrote this letter on December 5th, 2017.

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1. When I grow up, I would like to be: A doctor 

2. Someday I would like to meet my sponsor because: I want to thank you and see you personally. 

3. Someday I would like to meet: The president of Indonesia

4. Someday I would like to see: The making of an airplane

5. Someday I would like to visit: Bali 

Dear Miss Kayla, 

Shalom. I'm so happy to be able to get your letter. I am thankful to know you, Miss Kayla. I ask for your prayers so that my father and mother can reunite again. I am in 2nd grade of elementary school now. I like riding my bike. I have seen your photos of your foster children and family. They are so cute and have beautiful smiles. My greetings to Gage and Chloe. I hope Gage will get well soon. God bless. 

With Love From,
Kelvin

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Now a letter from little Bryan, who lives in Nicaragua. his is the first letter he's completely written on his own! He filled the whole page with his adorable, loopy handwriting. :) 

He is 7 years old and wrote this letter on November 18th, 2017. T

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Hi Dear Sponsor Kayla, 

God bless you! I am so happy for writing to you! I love your letters. I want to tell you that my project friends and I will go to the dinosaur park. We will also go to the pool. I like going out. My favorite food is friend chicken. There are four classrooms in my project. I like to be my friends. I like December because my family gives me Christmas presents. My mother always cooks deliciously on Christmas. I feel happy because I am on school vacation. I am playing more with my friends. I have never seen an eclipse. I say goodbye with a big hug and kisses. I wish you many blessings. 

Bryan



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Another from another boy. My little man Baraka wrote his letter to me on the My Hobbies and Pets template. 

Baraka is 8 years and and is from Kenya. His letter is dated December 18th, 2017. 

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1. Some of my hobbies are: Playing, reading, riding my bike. 

2. My favorite hobby is: Riding my bike 

3. One hobby I would like to try one day is: Singing

4. I would like to have: A ball 

5. The name of my pet is: Tommy (dog) 

6. The favorite thing I like doing with my pet is: Playing 

7. My friend's hobby is: Reading and his pet is Tiger (dog). 

Baraka greets you in Jesus' name. He says he is good with his family members. He thanks you for his support. He says he has a pet dog by the name of Tommy. He wishes you a merry Christmas and a prosperous new year. 

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I will close out this post with a letter from a little girl named Veronika. She wrote this letter on the My School Break template. To be honest, I find this template a bit odd. Some of the questions seem out of place to me. But oh well, it's always good to hear anything bout kids, right? 

Veronika is 7 years old and lives in Haiti. Her letter is dated November 21st, 2017. 

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1. What are the months of your school break? June, July, August. 

2. During my school break, I often go: To the river 

3. My favorite thing to do during my school break is: Play

4. My favorite fruit to eat during my school break is: Avocado 

5. During my school break, my favorite person to spend time with is: My mother 


Hi! Today it is with joy that Veronika writes this letter to you. She greets in you in Jesus' name. How are you and all of your family doing? How are your activities going? She is doing very well with her family and her activities are also going well. She is happy to hear from you. What preparations have you done already for Christmas? She says, in her country it rains every day. It gets so very cold. She prays for you for God to give you more strength and courage and bless you always. Pray for her for God to give her more intelligence in school. She wishes you a merry Christmas. She loves you a lot. She shares with you John 14. 

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Friday, January 19, 2018

From the Field Friday: RW-533

Today's pastor letter comes from project #533 in Rwanda. It sounds like the people in this community are really seeing their livelihood threatened, and quickly! I am so glad Compassion has come to help them secure success as their lives change around them.

This is the project my boy Cedrick attends.



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Dear Kayla, 

Greetings to you in the precious name of Jesus Christ! I am Rev. Pastor Dusabumeremyi Donatien and I am partner with Compassion International in the Musambira Student Center. We minister to your sponsored child. Thank you for your sponsorship of Cedrick. I am al the pastor of the Presbyterian Church of Rwanda, Musambira Parish. The church and center are situated in the Kamonyi District of the Southern Provicne of Rwanda. 



I wish to express my sincere gratitude for the love and kindness you have demonstrated. The community served lives on the outskirts of the city that is slowly encroaching on their land. Agriculture used to be the main activity, but due to the construction activities of the rapidly growing and expanding city, the land for agriculture is drastically getting reduced. Further, the land the community used to depend on has lost its fertility due to land overuse and the severe oil erosion. There is also a problem of the high family birthrate that leads to land fragmentation. Due to cultural practices, each male child is entitled to a piece of land by his parents to inherit, to do his farming, settle upon, and start his own family. As a result, the land continues to diminish each year, rendering it less productive to those who own it. 



There is a big problem of insufficient food to feed the family, hence malnutrition, ore especially among infants and young children, who are the most vulnerable. This result is various diseases related to malnutrition. The problem of lack of clean water for domestic use is rampant in this community and many of the children suffer from all sorts of water borne diseases. In addition, school-going children take long walks in search of water for domestic use and don't have enough time to study and do homework. 



The church has a big problem of ministering to the community that is hungry, sick, and uneducated. The church, therefore in partnership with Compassion International, initiated this center of sponsoring children of poverty. Many sponsored children, with their parents and caregivers, are attending the church. 

The church has had a big impact on the lives of the sponsored children with their families through many aspects. Supported children are provided with school fee subsidies, school uniforms, and various other needed school materials. They further received clothing, shoes, and domestic items like mattresses. Also they received water filters that give them cleaning drinking water. This benefits not only the sponsored children, but their families. 



Many of the supported children's families now attend the church and have either converted to Christianity or renewed their Christian faith. During this past year alone, the church congregation is now raised to 734 faithful Christians and continues to grow. 



At the time of the first Compassion registration at the center, most of the parents were desperate and they had no hope of their children going to school. They now enjoy the benefits of their children being registered with this center and in school. We wish we could accommodate more children. 



Communication is the most important aspect of the child-sponsor relationship. Sponsored children are delighted to receive letters from their sponsors. Those who receive letters are very proud and feel loved and cared for. Those that do not receive letters are sad. Please write Cedrick a letter as it makes each child so very happy to receive mail. Thank you for your kindness and the love you have demonstrated. 



God bless you abundantly! 

Pastor Dusabumuremyi Donatien 

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Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Two Letters from Joel

I just love this young man and his big dreams! I really hope he can accomplish everything that his heart desires. He seems to have a lot of talent and motivation.

Both of these letters were written on November 10th, 2017. I am not sure why he wrote two letters in one day, but both letters are different (aside from a few things) so it was clearly intentional. I think perhaps he just had too much to say to fit in one letter.

Joel is 17 years old and lives in Mexico.


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Hello Dear Kayla, 

I want to tell you what is happening to me at this time. In school I have been doing well. I have now improved my grades because this year I will graduate. I am excited because it is now my last year. Also, I want to tell you about some of my dreams that I have, and also my hobbies. My hobbies are playing soccer and taking photos, which is what I like to do the most. This passion is recent. Only last year I started with this passion. To this day, it is the one that has given me the most desire to move forward. I have wanted to take a photography class here where I live and I have also asked for my dad's advice. I thank you for the present that you sent me. With it I was able to buy pants. Please pray that my dream to become a professional photographer comes true. Also pray for my family. I would like to ask you, what do you like? Do you like any sports? I want to thank you for being a great friend. 

Your Friend,
Joel

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Hello Dear Sponsor, 

In this letter, I will answer your questions. Thanks to God I have been doing. In school I've been doing even better. My grades are improving because this is my last year in high school, because entering university. I will graduate in July 2018. I am planning on entering university after high school. I will study a career in law and human rights. I will also take some photography courses, because it is one of my favorite hobbies. I thank God because the earthquake we had in Chiapas didn't affect my family much. We were only scared. I want you to know that I am passionate about photography. It is one of my dreams and, Lord willing, I will work as a professional photographer at the National Geographic Corporation. They show you all the beauty that God has made. Pray for my parents and my studies. When does it start to snow where you live? How do you celebrate Christmas? What kind of food do you prepare? I thank you for being a great friend and writing to me. 

Joel 

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Sunday, January 14, 2018

Letters from 3 Girls

As you know, I don't have too many girls in my sponsorship family, so letters from girls don't happen quite as often as letters from boys. But, I have three such letters to share with you today.

Let's go in age order, for old time sake. :)

I received a My Dreams template from Airin. She also writes a very nice letter with the help of her tutor.

Airin is 7 years old and lives in Indonesia. Her letter is dated December 8th, 2017.

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1. When I grow up, I would like to be: A Doctor 

2. Someday I would like to meet my sponsor because: Because meeting my sponsor is my dream. 

3. Someday I would like to meet: My sponsor 

4. Someday I would like to see: My parents proud of my success

5. Someday I would like to visit: Bali, to visit tourism spots. 

My dear supporter, 

I am happy to write to you again. I am in 2nd grade now. Please pray for me that I will be a successful child in the future and will be able to make my parents proud of me and be happy. I will always pray for you, that God will bless your ministry, work, and family. Yes, I have seen a total eclipse in my country. One of my favorite chores is helping my parents. I will always pray for your students. I will pray for you and your fellow teachers so that your work runs smoothly. Please pray for me that my studying goes well and I will be able to become a successful child. 

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Up next is a letter from Rujikorn. One of my favorite letter writers (I have several). She drew me another lovely picture; one of her family this time. 

Rujikorn is 13 years old and lives in Thailand. Her letter was written on November 15th, 2017. 

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Dear Kayla, 

Hello. I thank you very much for sending me a letter and your photo. I feel so happy for reading your letter and seeing your photo. My family and I are doing well. I hope that you and your family are doing well. My school is starting at this time. I feel so happy for studying at the school at this time. I will concentrate more on my studies this year. I always attend the project activities every week with my friends. I feel the love of God to me more through the project program. My friends and I lead the worship at church every Sunday. I hear the sermon at the church too. I feel very happy for attending the project. I look forward to the coming of the Christmas celebration. I wish you a merry Christmas and a happy new year. I draw a picture of my family for you. I would like you to pray for my studies and also for the health of my family. I always pray for you and your family. May God always bless you and your family forever. 

With Love in Christ,
Rujikorn 



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The last letter for today is from Jhojaira. She tells me a great story in this letter! This story is in response to a story I shared with my kids and then asked them to tell me a popular story from their country. I like this one! I've heard a variation of this story before. It always sends a good message. 

Jhojaira is 14 years old. She is from Peru. Her letter is not dated. 

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Dear Sponsor Kayla, 

I greet you in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. At the same time, I want to thank you for the letter and the beautiful pictures you sent me. I loved the story because it was a good teaching. I know I will consider it in my daily life. Now I will tell you a very common story in my school, church, and whole district. 

One day, a man and his friends went hiking to a very high mountain, because they wanted to be recognized as the best climbers. But they were going to a very high part and it was starting to get dark, so they decided to stop and spend the night there. One of them didn't agree so he decided to continue because he wanted to be the first one to arrive. When he was on a very high part of the mountain, he slipped and fell down from a high part on the hill, and became fastened on a branch. The man was desperate and started to ask God for help. He heard a voice that said, "Let go of the branch, trust him." But the man didn't trust and decided to stay there. It was extremely cold so the man got hypothermia and died. The next day, one of the men found the body only one meter off the ground. This story teaches us that we don't always have to be ambitious, but we always have to trust in God. 

Kisses and hugs,
Jhojaira

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Friday, January 12, 2018

From the Field Friday: UG-906

Now that's it's a new year, it's time to start up my From the Field series again! Most (if not all) project have a letter written either by a pastor or a project leader. When you sponsor a new child or receive a new child as a correspondent, you are sent this letter in the mail. Sometimes they come really quickly after the new child arrives on your account and sometimes, multiple letters show up in bulk for kids you've had for awhile. Either way, it's pretty great.

I am going to post one of these letters every Friday until I have shared all of the letters I received in 2017. To put that into perspective a little bit, I will be posting for the next 6 months. Whew!

We start today with a letter from Muzuro's pastor, who leads at the church attached to project UG-906.

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Dear Kayla, 

I am Reverend Aroo Eunice, pastor of St. James Church of Uganda and the Awindiri Child Development Center, where we minister to Muzruo. 



Thank you dearly for all the support you send through sponsoring Muzuro. The community where we minister suffers much in face of extreme poverty. The vision of the church is to develop a wholesome and mature Christian, thoroughly equipped for good work in the Lord. The vision for the center is to develop God-fearing and fulfilled children into responsible Christian adults who will impact their communities in Jesus' name. We believe that when we equip the children to share God's unconditional love, preaching the Gospel, disciplining, conducting community service, and more, we will have impacted our community for future leadership. We are doing this through the holistic development program at the center. 



The Compassion program has benefited and impacted the lives of children in a number of ways, as compared to those not in the program. Spiritually, most of the children have confessed Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior. They are also able to lead praises during their time at the center. The children have also learned life skills like catering and tailoring, baking and computers. Some are even sewing. These are all income generating activities that will help them in the future. The children have also benefited from a number of things like scholastic materials and fees, medical care, and good food. This keeps them focused on their studies. 



The sponsor-child relationship established through letter writing has built the children in confidence and self-esteem. From the letters they are also learning socialization and writing skills. The letters help them to feel care for, loved, and encouraged and they are always so excited to write back with news about their lives. Those who do not receive letters feel very sad and discouraged. This is why it is important for you to send letters and photos to Muzuro often. 



I am so glad and grateful to partner with you in this ministry and that you sponsor and love Muzuro. May the Lord God Almighty bless you over and over again. 

Yours in Christ's Service, 
Reverend Aroo Eunice

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Thursday, January 11, 2018

Daniel's Updated Photo: 2018

My boy seems to have really grown! And his face has really matured. They sure do change a lot in two years, don't they?

You can click on the photo to enlarge it, if you'd like to.



Sunday, January 7, 2018

First Letters of 2018

I have already received 5 letters this year! I'd say that I'm off to a pretty great start. My kids are rockstars!

My first letter of 2018 came from Maria, who is now signing her name with her middle name, Eduarda. It's time to start the adjustment in my brain of calling her by a new name!

Eduarda (see, I'm adjusting already) is 13 years old and lives in Brazil. She wrote this letter on November 29th, 2017.

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Hello Dear Sponsor Kayla, 

How are you and your family? Thank God, mine and I are fine. I'm on school vacation. I'm getting my grades next week. God willing, I'll pass. I love hearing from you. I loved the last letter and I colored all the pictures. How are the children you take care of? I love getting your news. I share 1 Chronicles 16:34, "Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good. His love endures forever." 

Love,
Eduarda 

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Now a letter from Erick. I thank God for this young man. My decision to sponsor him was a quick decision. One that I actually made at work, using the work computer for something besides work purposes. A friend of my was asking for some help finding sponsors for children. I asked if she had any older boys available. And the rest, as they say, is history. Erick is such a great guy. I love being his sponsor. 

Erick is 15 years old and lives in Honduras. His letter is dated November 30th, 2017. 

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Dear Sponsor Kayla, 

I give thanks to God for being alive. I hope you in good health. I give thanks to God for your letters, drawings, and photos. They are very nice and I am very happy to have news from you. In my free time, I like reading your letters, which are of much blessing to me. I want to answer the questions you gave me. In Honduras, the new school year starts in the month of February. Thanks to God, I got good grades and I passed 7th grade. Next year, I will be going to 8th grade. I wish to be a builder. I very much like to watch the things the builders are building. It looks very interesting. To achieve that dream, I have to work hard in my studies. I like to wear pants, shirts, and tennis shoes. Today I ate fish fillet, rice, and lettuce salad. My house is pink and white. It has 3 rooms. My 3 sisters, my grandmother, and I live in it. The project is really big. There is a temple where we sing and receive advice from the word of God. There are four classrooms and a backyard to play. There is a kitchen where they make meals and there are bathrooms. There is also an office where all our papers are. Also, there are two trees in the front of the project. If I had a free hour, I would play soccer with my friends. The funniest thing that has ever happened to me is when a friend told me a joke. My friends make me laugh. The last time I went to a party was on November 22nd, when we had a farewell party. What do you do on Christmas? Please pray for me so that each day I can serve God and get ahead. 

With Love and Affection, 
Erick

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Now we venture a letter from a little guy, a template letter from Rodrigo, written on the My House template. 

Rodrigo is 7 years old and is from Bolivia. His letter is dated September 22nd, 2017. 

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1. The walls of my house are made of: Wood
2. The roof of my house is made of: Metal 
3. The floor of my house is made of: Brick 
4. In my house, there are: 4 people: my mom, dad, brother, and me
5. In my house we have: Water & Electricity 

Dear Sponsor Kayla, 

I greet you with the peace of the Lord Jesus Christ. This is Paul writing, Rodrigo's tutor. Rodrigo wants to answer some of your questions. He enjoys wearing shorts and t-shirts. His house is made of wood and there is only one room in his house. Please pray for Rodrigo's entire family. 

Sincerely, 
Rodrigo and Paul 



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Onto a letter from Agness. This letter cracks me up because she mentions that I "ask many questions" and says she'll answer them, but then she doesn't actually answer any. Haha. Silly girl. 

Agness is 14 years old and lives in Tanzania. Her letter is dated December 14th, 2017. 

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Dear Kayla, 

I hope that you are doing well and are doing well. My family and I are doing well and are healthy. We thank God because he fights for us every day. In your letter, you ask many questions and I answer them. I am doing well with my studies and God is helping me. Thank you for the nice letter that you sent. I am happy with it. I am doing well with my home chores. My parents greet you so much. Thank you for your nice letter and I like it. Thank you for the nice Bible verse too. I wish you a merry Christmas and a happy new year. I don't have much else to say but God bless you. 

Yours,
Agness

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And we end this post with a letter from another one of my lovely teen guys. This letter from Gary also makes me laugh. Awhile back, I wrote a letter about the solar eclipse and how I viewed it. I sent photos of me wearing the special eclipse glasses. Gary responds and tells me about the last time his country had an eclipse. Then he asks me if I've ever seen one. Haha. Another silly kid. 

Gary is 17 years old and lives in Nicaragua. He wrote this letter on November 27th, 2017. 

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Hello Dear Sponsor Kayla, 

I thank you for your sponsorship. I hope you are healthy. I want to tell you that in my country, we last had a full eclipse in 1996. I had not been born yet. I want to tell you that on November 24th we had a spiritual retreat and we had a lot of fun. On November 27th it will be my birthday and I will have a great time with my family. I thank God for one more year of life God is giving to me. I am so grateful for all the blessings you have sent me. I got your gift and I bought a pair of shoes, pants, and six pairs of socks. I would like to know; When is the last time there was an eclipse in your country? Have you ever watched an eclipse? I always pray for you so that God will keep you and bless you in a great way. I ask you to pray for me and my family and the project, as well. May God bless you! I say goodbye with much love. 

Your sponsored child who loves you so much, 
Gary

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Friday, January 5, 2018

2017 Letter Stats

Whew! Alright, you guys. As you can probably tell, I don't normally put a lot of background work into my blog posts. As a huge majority of my blog posts are me just typing up letters I get from kids, it's basically just showing off my typing skills. ;)

But, this post, that I do every year, takes a lot of work! As the year passes, I get a tally document of each letter I receive from my kids. Then, when I do posts like this, I go through that document and count, sort, and calculate. Then I make photo collages to represent each set of data. It takes quite awhile, but it's totally worth it when it all comes together.

There is just something amazing about counting up how many letters I receive in a year. It's really a great way to see just how blessed I am.

If you remember from past years (or if you're a Compassion sponsor yourself), the magic number with Compassion is 6. Sponsors that write to their kids at least monthly, should receive 6 letters per year from their kids. With that being said, it very rarely works out that way. Kids are absent from letter writing day, projects still haven't updated to writing that often, mail gets delayed, etc, etc, etc. With that being said, my average number last year was 4. A majority of my kids wrote me 4 letters. This year, that average is up to 5 letters! Whoo hoo!

But, I have two champions this year! I received 8 letters each from Kwizera and Sunrei. You go, kiddos!



Another above average friend of mine is Daniel. He wrote me 7 letters!



I received that "magic number" 6 letters from Acram, Airin, Ayling, Jhon, and Jhoyra 


My largest group of kids all wrote me 5 letters each. That includes Celeste, Enmanuel, Bryan, Eric, Line, Carlos, Nicol, Rebecca, Brian, Marinelis, Ronaldo, Tern, Daniel, Prity, Faith, Carolin, and Rujikorn.



Moving on down to 4 letters. That's how many letters I received from Djimitri, Joel, Maria, Jhojaira, Nikko, Sevenson, Jhonrex, Jonatan, Gary, Rodrigo, Tamire, Agness, Dagim, Jule, and Mulwa. 



The next group of kiddos all wrote me 3 letters this year. That includes Mariela, Tumbu, Jonathan, Veronika, Joseph, Marilyn, Zenebu, Kamaldine, Muuo, Emanise, Lemayian, Baraka, and Hillary. 



The kiddos that wrote me just 2 letters in 2017 were mostly new kiddos. However a few of them are kids I've had more nearly a year or even for several years. I'm not sure what the hold up is on their letters. This group includes Dedilhomme, Ernest, Anju, Mor-Mi-Say, and Brisa.  



The kiddos that wrote me 1 letter each are brand new and I've only been writing to them for a few months. Some even less than that and their first letter came really fast. Those kids are Cedrick, Lenin, Milkias, Muzuro, and Yohannis. 



I have a handful of other brand new kids, who I have yet to hear from. I am looking forward to hearing from these kids in 2018. They are Shakilla, Joshua, Sandra, Nico, Keyla, Kelvin, and Samirul. 


There were 23 other letters that I received in 2017 that I will not include with the other kids. I am keeping these writers separately because I said goodbye to them in 2017. Some of the kids graduated, others moved, and others were dropped by their financial sponsors. I said goodbye to Derrick, Emanuel, Jose, Chokchai, Eric, Yahoska, Haji, and Brenda. 



And outside of Compassion, I also received letters from my Manna boys! I received 18 letters in total. Most of my Manna boys are very new. I've only had two of them for a whole year, so I know that I will receive many more letters in 2018. My Manna family includes Carlos, Brayan, Angel, Ivan, Noel, Antony, Defer, Yesbin, Levi, and Jarlen. 



If I counted correctly (I probably didn't, but you don't have to double check), I received a total of 293 letters in 2017. 

Wow! 

What a great year it was!