Let’s face it, it’s always tempting to sponsor that adorable looking toddler with the toothy smile. But what happens when that toddler becomes a child and then a teenager? With young people in the UK seeming to grow up faster and faster, it’s easy to presume that the young people in Compassion’s programmes don’t need the help of a sponsor when they reach their teenage years.
But as Sidney Muisyo, Vice President of Africa Region comments, “Development by nature is a slow process. We must persevere in the individual journeys of each child in our programmes.”
Here are 6 reasons why sponsoring a young person as they grow and mature into an adult is hugely important…
- You’re giving them the opportunity to stay in a programme that works.
Independent research has shown that Compassion- sponsored children are more likely to finish school and gain salaried/white collared jobs. To give your sponsored child the best possible opportunity to reach these outcomes, they need to stay in the programme.
- The curriculum lessons teenagers are given at their Compassion project are brilliant.
These lessons are part of the culturally adapted Compassion curriculum which has been developed over Compassion’s 60 year history. Over the age of 12, sponsored children learn topics such as Good spiritual disciplines, Biblical perspectives on marriage and relationships, Entrepreneurial skills and How to find and keep a job.
- Every sponsored child over the age of 12 is taught a vocational skill at their project.
By supporting your sponsored child as they get older, you’re giving them the opportunity to become more proficient in a skill that will help them in the future. For example, Compassion graduate Sameson has set up his own woodworking business using the skills he learnt at his Compassion project. Sameson explains, “I am most grateful that through Compassion I studied woodworking. God sent Compassion to brighten my future.”
- Sponsorship gives a young person the opportunity to continue in their education.
Children in the countries where we work are often behind in their education. Due to the challenges poverty has placed in their path they may have begun their schooling late or had to retake school years. Compassion sponsorship enables a child or young person to receive at least a basic education. Supporting them as a teenager ensures they have the time to complete this education and receive as much educational support as possible.
- The Compassion programme provides vital role models to teenagers growing up in unstable environments.
Many of the young people in our programmes live in communities plagued with drug and gang culture. Through sponsorship they are provided with good Christian role models. You the sponsor offer encouragement and discipleship in letters and Christian project staff mentor young people on a weekly basis.
- Sponsoring a teenager is a strategic way of bringing change to a community.
Every year a young person is in the Compassion programme is another year they will receive regular teaching and challenges to grow in their faith. Older sponsored children are given increased responsibility in their projects, often going on evangelistic campaigns or mentoring younger children. Sponsored child Rodelin disciples a group of children from her village using the teaching she receives at her Compassion project. Again, independent research has shown that young people who go through the Compassion programme are 30-75 per cent more likely to become community leaders and 40 to 70 per cent more likely to become church leaders.
To find out more about sponsoring a teenager call 01932 836490 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org