Your letter writing struggles solved—and letter templates for you to copy!

One of the most unique and beautiful parts of child sponsorship is the opportunity to build a relationship with the child you sponsor through letter writing.

But many sponsors find it difficult to write for a wide variety of reasons. It can be hard to find time to write. What should you say? Isn’t letter writing a bit outdated, anyway?

Project director hands out letters to group of excited children.

Children at a Compassion centre in Ethiopia excitedly receive their letters from their sponsors.

Here’s what you need to know: Letters really do mean the world to the kids in Compassion programs around the world. Judith Akwol, a director of a child development centre in Kampala, Uganda, puts it this way: “If you could just see [the children’s] reactions when they receive a letter from their sponsor, you would know how they feel about it. They are just filled with joy.”

We don’t ever want you to feel guilty—trust me, every sponsor I’ve ever spoken to has a story about letter writing struggles. But we can tackle those struggles together!

We want help to tear down three common letter writing barriers by equipping you with a few tools and tips… (And read until the end for some letter templates that you can copy, fill-in-the-blank style, to help with your next case of writers’ block!)

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Letter writing barrier #1: I don’t have time—and when I do, I forget!

In the midst of everything else on the go, it can be understandably difficult to carve out time to write on your own—so why not make a date out of it? Put “letter writing night” into the family calendar! For younger families, kids can draw a picture while adults write a message. If you sponsor multiple children as a family, rally together and each write one letter (or do so in pairs)—you’ll be done in no time!

A boy in Nazareth, Ethiopia reads a letter from his sponsor as a friend peeks over his shoulder.

If you’re up for a bigger endeavour, organize a letter writing party for some friends and fellow sponsors! Share some treats and write letters together. Encourage your guests to bring stickers and photographs to send along with their letters.

Whatever you choose to do, I’ll bet that you are less likely to forget or put it off if it’s a set date in your calendar with your family or some friends.

Letter writing barrier #2: It’s old-fashioned!

Old-fashioned isn’t necessarily bad, and for those who prefer it, sending your letters to us via snail mail is still an option! But it is true that finding an envelope, a stamp and a mailbox can prove challenging for some of us. That’s why we have MyCompassion, an online tool created to enhance your ability to connect with your sponsored child.

Justin, in El Salvador, proudly shows off a stack of letters from his sponsor.

Justin, in El Salvador, proudly shows off a stack of letters from his sponsor.

If you’ve never logged on before, creating an account takes just a few minutes—and you will be all set up to write letters, access information about your child and so much more. You can choose to send a card, bookmark, colouring page or poster along with your letter, and attach a personal photo of your choice to share with your child.

Thanks to technology, writing a letter has never been easier—and because they are now digital, letters are arriving from your child and into your hands, and vice versa, faster than ever before.

Letter writing barrier #3: I don’t know what to write!

It can be hard to know what to say to a child who lives in a very different context from your own! We’ve compiled a list of letter writing prompts in the past, but today we’re taking it one step further and providing some letter templates that you can copy. That’s right—you have full permission to copy, paste and simply fill in the blanks! Here are four options…

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1. For the studious sponsor:

Dear {child},

 Thank you for your letters and beautiful drawings! I love to hear about what your life is like in {country}! I hope you and your family are doing well.

I am a student, and I am currently in {grade/year}. I am studying {major/field}, which means that we focus on {subject matter}. My favourite subject is {subject} because…

Do you like to go to school? What is your favourite subject? Do you know what you want to study or be when you are older?

Remember to keep working hard in school, by God’s grace! Here is a verse that encourages me: “And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.” Colossians 3:17

Thank you for praying for me! I am praying for you and {specific prayer request that your child wrote to you about}. Always remember how much God loves you—and I love you too!

With love,

{Your name}

Débora, a tutor at a child development centre in Honduras, assists a child in writing a letter to his sponsor.

Débora, a tutor at a child development centre in Honduras, assists a child in writing a letter to his sponsor.

2. For the sporty sponsor:

Dear {child},

Thank you for your letters! I love hearing from you and seeing your creative drawings! I hope you and your family are doing well.

Do you like to play any sports? I love playing {sport}! I play {position}, which means that I… I play on a team {at my school/in my community/with my church} and my teammates are my really good friends! We have a lot of fun together. My favourite part about playing {sport} is…

I also like watching {sport}. My favourite team/player is… because… Do you watch any sports? Who is your favourite team or player?

Thanks for praying for me! I will be praying for you too. How can I specifically pray for you?

Before I finish my letter, I’d like to share my favourite Bible verse with you. It is {verse}. I hope it encourages you as much as it encourages me!

I hope to hear from you again soon. Always remember how much God loves you—and I love you too!

Love,

{Your name}

Arisleisy happily responds to a letter from her sponsor at her child development centre in the Dominican Republic.

Arisleisy happily responds to a letter from her sponsor at her child development centre in the Dominican Republic.

3. For the animal-loving sponsor:

Dear {child},

How are you? I hope you and your family are doing well! Thank you for your letters and drawings! I love hearing from you. I was also very happy to receive a new photo of you. You have grown so much taller and you look very healthy and strong!

Do you like animals? What kinds of animals live near you? I have a pet {animal} named {name}. Here’s a picture of him/her! {Pet} really likes to… I also like to take {pet} to the… because…

I love to think about how creative God is, that he created all the plants and animals and everything in the world! One of my favourite verses is Genesis 1:31: “God saw all that he had made, and it was very good.” Did you know that includes you? God created you and you are ‘very good’!

Thank you for praying for me! How can I be praying for you?

Always remember how much God loves you—and I love you too!

Love,

{Your name}

*Don’t forget to attach the photo of your pet!

Maria sits in her home in Peru, clutching an armful of beloved letters from her sponsor.

Maria sits in her home in Peru, clutching an armful of beloved letters from her sponsor.

4. For the musical sponsor:

 Dear {child},

How are you? Thank you for the letter that you sent to me! I was so glad to hear that {some news they shared}.

One of my favourite things to do is play the {instrument}. I also play {other instruments}. My favourite kind of music to play is {genre}, and one of my favourite songs is {song} by {artist}. Do you play any instruments or know anyone who does?

I also play on the worship band at my church. My favourite worship song is {song} by {artist}. Have you heard that song before? I like it because…

One of my favourite verses in the Bible is Psalm 96:1–2: “Sing to the LORD a new song; sing to the LORD, all the earth. Sing to the LORD, praise his name; proclaim his salvation day after day.” It is such a beautiful thing that we get to praise God with songs and music. I love worshipping God in this way. How do you connect with God?

Thank you for praying for me! I will be praying for you too. I hope your family is well. Please let me know how I can be specifically praying for you.

Always remember how much God loves you—and I love you too!

With love from Canada,

{Your name}

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We hope this helps you get inspired to write a letter! Thank you for the time you take to write—it would be difficult to overstate the impact your words have in the life of the child you sponsor!

Do you have some letter writing tips, or a letter template to share? Leave them in the comments!

Write Today

Written by: Alyssa Esparaz

Alyssa brings her passion for youth, justice and Jesus to her role as Compassion Canada�s Advocacy Associate, as she works to inspire and equip the Church to live compassionate lifestyles. Her favourite things in the world include her family, basketball, ice cream and riding on airplanes.