As a State Representative, when I visit your churches, I get asked a lot of questions. One of the most common is: “Do I have to write letters to my sponsored child?”

Honestly? This is a question I, myself, have asked!

If you’re familiar with our sponsorship program, then you know that your generosity helps a whole community… not just the child you sponsor. So, what does that mean for letter writing?

On a recent trip to the Philippines I discovered the answer to this question.

When I arrived in the first community a child club meeting was in full swing. After they welcomed my group and we prayed together, they announced their main activity for the day… letter writing.

They got straight to work.

I watched as a group of teenagers agonised over phrases, wording, and handwriting as they painstakingly crafted letters to their Australian sponsors. I asked them what they knew about the families they were writing to, I asked them how it felt to receive a letter, and I listened to their excited responses.

I moved to a table of younger children. Here, parents and community volunteers helped with reading and writing and answering questions. These children pored intently over every word, desperate to get things right.

I learned that the children who do not receive letters (those without sponsors and those whose sponsors do not write) were also taking part in the activity. They regularly exchanged letters with other child clubs in the project area – an initiative organised by our Christian partner in the field!

The effort and enthusiasm I witnessed that day told me one thing: children care about their letters.

So, if you can, please write your sponsored child a letter… because they take the care to write to you. Just a few lines in response can bring a BIG smile to your sponsored child’s face!

The children love getting to know you and sharing about their lives in return… and it will help you to remember that poverty is personal.

And if the thought of letter writing is stopping you from sponsoring a child, don’t let it. We work with our Christian partners in the field to make sure that no child is left behind.


John Lewis
NSW State Representative

P.S. If you sponsor a child, and haven’t written to them in a while, it’s easy! You can even do it online here.