Experts predict that up to 30 years of development progress could be wiped out because of the ripple effect of COVID-19. Our church partners have worked heroically to meet the needs of children and families in these unprecedented times.
On this page, you can find answers to frequently asked questions and the most up-to-date reports from each region where we work.
Video: A global update on Compassion’s COVID-19 response
How has Compassion responded to the pandemic, globally?
Since the global shutdown, Compassion Canada, with its international partners and the local church, has provided urgent care to communities most impacted by the pandemic. Together*, we have:
- Delivered more than 19.1 million food packs
- Given over 13.1 million hygiene kits
- Assisted more than 2.1 million individuals to access medical care
- Delivered more than 480,000 cash transfers to families in need
* numbers updated December 21, 2021 and reflect COVID-19 response from April 2020 to October 2021
Because of lockdown measures and other public health measures which are still ongoing, the nature of how we deliver program had to change. In most communities where we work, Compassion is not currently able to deliver our program to sponsored children as we would in normal times, but that does not mean that sponsorship or child development has stopped.
Sponsorship during COVID-19 enables us to meet the very real and very urgent needs of children and their families:
- It empowers the church to serve the children we love, ensuring they have the hygiene, medication and health supplies they need to make it through the pandemic.
- It ensures they have the food and housing security they need as their nations deal with the ongoing impact of COVID-19.
- And it also enables our local partners to share encouragement from the Bible, tutor and deliver programming and deliver trauma counselling in these unprecedented times.
So, while the delivery model for sponsorship has been disrupted, we’re finding every possible way to ensure continuity of connection and the health and safety of each sponsored child.
The need for sponsorship is greater, now more than ever. Your monthly sponsorship dollars are now being used in a very specific ways. Delivery depends on the local laws and public health mandates in each community during the global crisis and according to the child’s exact needs.
While children are not coming to the Compassion centre or church building where they normally receive program, the church is going to them.
Our staff members and volunteers in each country visit children at home and check in with children on social media, deliver Bible lessons over mobile devices and even broadcast radio messages into communities.
By staying connected in these ways, we can understand the specific needs of your sponsored child and their family.
Our commitment is that we won’t stop. We will serve children in need. We will find new ways for program delivery and education. We will continue to ensure that children are known, loved and protected when they need us most.
We know it has been frustrating and worrisome for many of you who have not received the normal frequency of letters from the child or children you sponsor. Many countries where we work are still experiencing significant impacts due to the pandemic, and as a result, the delivery of letters continues to be delayed. You can see a full update on the status of child letters from our Supporter Services team here.
Compassion has always responded to urgent needs as they arise in the communities where we work.
When disaster strikes, our church partners are there to help because they know the names, the faces, and the needs of the communities where they live and work.
In March 2020, disaster struck the whole world when the WHO declared COVID-19 was a global pandemic. Beyond this, many countries experienced layered crisis, such as in Haiti, where a devastating earthquake struck in August 2021.
Compassion’s more than 8,000 church partners are responding heroically to alleviate the devastating effects of COVID-19 and other crises through short-term relief and long-term recovery. This is a powerful testimony of the global church rising together where the need is the greatest to provide survival and stability through a unifying moment in history.
There’s so much good news
Thanks to the generosity of Canadians, we are excited to announce that together, we have raised over $3.2 million to provide desperately needed food, housing stability and hygiene supplies to those impacted by COVID-19! We are so thankful for how God is using His people to bring tangible help and hope to those who need it most.
How does Compassion’s program work to prevent disease?
We are grateful to report that staff at Compassion centres around the globe already actively teach children about hygiene and disease prevention — especially hand-washing! As Public Health Canada outlines, this is one of the best ways to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and other similar viruses.
Access to clean, running water is a key factor in disease prevention. Alongside our local church partners, Compassion is a leader in providing clean water to communities around the world.
How to Pray
- Prayer for a Hurting World: a 3-day devotional on YouVersion
- A prayer guide for World Children’s Day
- The Lord’s Prayer: for a pandemic
We are deeply saddened that within the global Compassion family, children, family members and staff members of local church partners have passed away from COVID-19. Please pray that God would comfort these affected families and communities they grieve.
Please also continue to pray for those who are impacted by this pandemic. Medical professionals predict the worst may be yet to come for the developing world, which is under-resourced for testing and caring for COVID-19 patients. This means that tracking the full impact on Compassion, particularly the children and families we serve, will be increasingly difficult as the pandemic continues. We are doing our best to keep you informed of the effect this crisis is having on Compassion’s ministry while also continuing to respect the privacy of children, their families and our local church partners. Thank you for your continued understanding, support and prayers.