How they write

I sponsor two children and recently it’s struck me how differently the two of them are in their ‘writing style’.

My little girl in Thailand is nearly 12 years old, I’ve probably heard from her three times this year, and we’re starting to reach the point where I’ve sponsored her long enough that we’re starting to form a conversation, a bit of flow between the letters, which I’m really enjoying.

For example, she has been telling me about her visit to a national park with her family; how they saw a bear, and she asked if I have national parks near me, so I sent her a photo of some New Forest ponies.

My little boy in Tanzania is only seven and only ever puts two or three sentences in a letter, like “receive my greetings wherever you are,” and “My family and I are doing well”. And yet I’ve received so many this year I’ve started to lose track! 


In both ways I really enjoy how they write. I love how the little boy wants to write to me so often, and I love how the little girl writes so much.

In their own way they each have lots to say and it’s as though one Tweets and the other blogs!

How does your sponsored child write to you?

Have you managed to strike up some sort of conversation with them?

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16 Responses to How they write

  1. Midori 22/10/2011 at 2:02 pm #

    It’s lovely how each child is so unique in how he or she writes. It really is a wonderful display of the diversity of the world. Most of my sponsored children are older now, so in some ways that makes writing a bit easier. Our conversations really got started when I began sharing more of my life with them. Just little things like what I do at school, what I do with friends and challenging classes went a long way. I also got conversations going by really reading the child’s letters and bio closely, and then asking them questions about their interests.

    • Ineke Clewer
      Ineke 26/10/2011 at 6:44 pm #

      Hi Midori – I’m really looking forward to when they get older and our conversations get even deeper! For now I talk about the weather, things I liked at school, and things like that :) Thanks for the tip of looking more carefully at the letters and bio’s though – I’ll be doing that!

  2. rebecca garnett 22/10/2011 at 4:37 pm #

    I sponsor a little 4 year old boy from Bolivia..he doesnt write but his tutor does and he draws little pictures..I dont feel there is any real dialogue but I do send family photos and write regularly to give him a bit of news. I look forward to the day when he can write by himself! Rebecca

    • Ineke Clewer
      Ineke 26/10/2011 at 6:45 pm #

      Hi Rebecca – My youngest doesn’t write his own letters, but I like to think of him sat there dictating to someone what he’d like to say. Just like yours though, he always draws me a page of pictures, which over 2 years I can actually see improvement in, makes me feel proud of him :)

  3. Louisa 26/10/2011 at 11:37 pm #

    I have two sponsor children, the child from The Philippines amazes me immensely, I am shocked at how God is using him in my life as he is so far away and small still. I suffer with anxiety since my mum died and God has been working through this with me i was advise one day to await on a scripture that would really speak to me. I found the scripture in a Philippa Hanna’s book, it felt right everything i felt slotted in. And at the beginning of September I carried round Joshua 1-9 in my bag. Last week on the back of the letter from my sponsor child whose family writes English, was Joshua 1-9! I feel such a strong bond and I thank God for the opportunity. I may be assisting in his financial situation but this little child is making a difference to me spiritually,richly letting me discover my God through this simple sharing of letters of love
    sponsor a child

    • Joe
      Joe Henegan 27/10/2011 at 12:18 pm #

      Wow, Louisa that’s amazing! Thank you so much for sharing

    • Ineke Clewer
      Ineke 08/11/2011 at 9:44 pm #

      Hi Louisa, I echo Joe – that’s really incredible! :) I love that it’s so much more than the money we send them!

  4. Darren Allwright
    Darren 04/11/2011 at 9:26 am #

    Lovely blog Ineke! I love the comment at the end about one tweeting and one blogging! When we see child letters from the children’s point of view, it becomes less about what WE want to hear but more about how they are expressing their thanks.

    • Ineke Clewer
      Ineke 08/11/2011 at 9:45 pm #

      Thanks Darren! I wish I’d noticed the tweeting/blogging thing, but credit must go to a friend of mine for that!

  5. Steve Bunn 08/11/2011 at 9:39 am #

    I really enjoy the letters I get from our children but what I really like is when they draw for pictures for me..

    • Ineke Clewer
      Ineke 08/11/2011 at 9:46 pm #

      Hi Steve, that’s something I totally missed out in my post – the child who writes more doesn’t draw me pictures, but the one who writes short letters always sends me a full A4 page of drawings – mainly of aeroplanes! I should ask him about that!

  6. Sarah Tummey
    Sarah Tummey 11/02/2012 at 9:57 pm #

    When I got my last letter from Graham Russel in the Philippines, the whole of it was in English (no translation needed) and he’s only 9!

    I’ve sponsored Jennylyn the longest and we do conversation now. I can tell she takes in my letters. When we first started writing, I didn’t imagine I would have explained the rules of Scrabble to her!

    • Ineke Clewer
      Ineke 12/02/2012 at 12:19 am #

      Hi Sarah
      that’s so exciting that’s he’s writing English already, and I love that one of them wanted Scrabble explained – I can’t wait till my letters get to that level of detail :)

  7. Chris 25/03/2012 at 7:16 am #

    Hello! this is my 1st visit to the blog and I am new to Compassion UK too. I was encouraged and really felt it was right for me to have a sponsered child after a Mothering Sunday talk last week at Church. I have just sent a letter online to my sponsered child and wondered if I had pitched it right! So hard to know but can only trust it will reach her quickly and be some encouraging words to her. I have something to send as well because I enjoy working with paper and so have tried to be creative to encompass the rules of it only being paper but something possibly to treasure in some way. Really look forward to hearing back one day and hope as things progress we too can have some special and meaningful dialogue soon enough. Thanks for sharing – it really has helped me as I pray for the right contact with E.

  8. Daphne Clark 26/03/2012 at 9:51 am #

    I love receiving letters from our two sponsored children……one in El Salvadore and one in Togo. It’s great to see their sense of humour developing too! I love to see their drawings and put them up in the kitchen with those of our own grandchildren. I prefer not to write on-line as I enjoy thinking what small thing I can send in with my letters.I thank God for Compassion….making it possible to help lift these precious children and their families out of poverty


  1. Feeling Inspired « Shelley Moore - 11/11/2011

    […] I love sharing life with these two beautiful children and their families, as well as with other Compassion sponsors through the Our Compassion website. I want to encourage you – if you can get involved, even if it’s just choosing a child on the Compassion website and praying for them – do it. It’ll change your life. (The inspiration for this came from a blog I read on the Compassion UK blog, which you can read here.) […]

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