Compassion Tuesday: Spotlight on Sakthi


As I mentioned last week, I’ll be introducing you to my current sponsor children over the next few weeks. We’ll be meeting them from oldest to youngest. Today, I would like to introduce you to Sakthi.

However, in order to do that, we first have to start with Soumya.



Soumya was my second sponsor child and my first girl. She lives near Trivandrum on the southernmost tip of India. I sponsored her for approximately 13 years until she graduated from Compassion’s program at the age of 19. I plan on giving Soumya her own post at a later date.


When Soumya graduated, Compassion sent me another little girl from India for me to consider sponsoring. For me, there was nothing to consider, and so I immediately began my relationship with a little girl named Sakthi.


Sakthi was five years old when I began sponsoring her. In the five years since, she has grown up a lot!



In her most recent picture, which I received this year, Sakthi had traded her Western attire for a traditional salwar-kameez.


I’m not sure when it becomes customary for girls in India to make this change, but I remember when Soumya did the same thing.

Letters from Sakthi are unique as she is the only child I’ve had who writes to me in English. It’s kind of nice, but because she is still so young, and English is not her first, or even second language, I often wonder if she would be able to express herself better in her own tongue.



Her handwriting is improving. That’s fun to see. šŸ™‚

In one of her earlier letters, she answered a questionnaire about her favorite things. Take a look at her best friend’s name.


Isn’t that cool? That just served as confirmation to me that we were meant for each other.

I am looking forward to many more years as her sponsor.


There are many girls in India waiting for sponsors. Perhaps one of them is waiting for you.





Compassion Tuesday: Meet My Kids


Today almost got away from me completely. With the holiday, I’m all discombobulated. Since it’s so late in the day, this will be a quick post.


Last week, I introduced you to my first sponsor child, Rio. This week, I thought I’d introduce you to my current sponsor children. I’ll highlight them individually in the weeks to come.


Clockwise from the upper left:

Sakthi is 10 years old and lives near Chennai, India.

Gabriela is 9 years old and lives near Oruro, Bolivia.

Theleza is 8 years old and lives near Lake Victoria in Tanzania.

Aldo is 6 years old and lives near Medan, Indonesia.

Abise is 4 years old and lives near Woliso, Ethiopia.

Estefania is also 4 years old and lives near Tulancingo, Mexico.

I’ll be highlighting Sakthi next week.


In the mean time, consider checking out some of the children waiting for a sponsor at



Compassion Tuesday: How It All Began

Today, I’m launching a feature I’ve had in my mind since I started this blog: Compassion Tuesdays. I have been a sponsor with Compassion for 20 years and a volunteer Child Advocate for over a decade. In this feature, I hope to introduce you to Compassion through my own sponsor children. Today, we’ll start at the very beginning of my Compassion journey.


I first became aware of Compassion International through a little insert in my Michael W. Smith cassette tape when I was in Jr. High.Ā Michael spoke about the plight of children living in poverty and of a solution: child sponsorship through Compassion International. HeĀ introducedĀ me to his beautiful sponsor child, Gavi. Each new album brought a new update. I was hooked! I looked forward to those updates almost as much as the albums themselves. I determined that, when I was old enough, I would sponsor my own child through Compassion.

That time came in my third year of college. A friend had done a Compassion presentation at his church and had two children left. One of those was Rio, an adorable five year-old boy from the island of Java in Indonesia. I fell in love immediately and sponsored him on the spot! Thus began a wonderful relationship.


Watching Rio grow up was a unique experience. Every few months, I received a new letter. I vividly remember the point he started writing his own vs dictating them to his teachers. The careful, neat adult writing gave way to an adorable childish scrawl. I watched him grow mainly through his handwriting as it slowly returned to a careful, neat script.


Of course, there were occasional photo updates as well.


I sponsored Rio for 17 years until he graduated from Compassion’s program at the age of 22. His letters and photos are some of my greatest treasures.


Rio was my first Compassion child, but he wasn’t my last. In all, I’ve sponsored thirteen and currently sponsor six. I’ve been a volunteer Child Advocate with Compassion for a decade or so. It’s a program I truly believe in.

When you sponsor a child with Compassion, you have a relationship with a living, breathing, dreaming, playing, very real child. You are their only sponsor. It’s a relationship that changes you both. I hope you will consider starting a relationship of your own.


Children in Indonesia

Children in Indonesia