GWAS Bulletin Board: Compassion Day!
|Tigertown's Chris and Charlie Collins|
I was convicted to sponsor a child on a Compassion Day while sitting in my cosy glossy office four years ago. Since then, Ana, who lives in Honduras – a nation wrecked by corruption and disaster and poverty – and has asthma, has become an important part of my life. Her family survives on very little money; her home has no running water. But like other little girls, she likes playing with dolls and bike riding and applies herself to her school studies when she's not absent with her asthma.
Ana's Compassion card sits on my work desk; her letters light up my drearier days; writing letters to her take me out of my first-world fug. The benefits of child sponsorship are manifold. It gives life more purpose. It gives earning money more meaning. It expands our world view. It puts us in touch with our humanity. And it helps to put things right in the world.
Child sponsorship can not only prevent young ones in developing nations from dying from curable disease and malnutrition, but it can help fund the education that will empower them to break through generational poverty and lead them to living fulfilling lives. It also helps instill value in girls. And women.
"Compassion is transforming lives of people that go from thinking they're worthless and have no hope to having a future and a bright future and becoming somebody and knowing they'll be okay and getting good jobs," says Kara, a nurse and child ambassador who recently visited India.
This year's campaign focuses on the Child Survival Program, which aims to support women before, during and after their pregnancies. You, or your office, can choose to sponsor a program supporting 50 women and their bubs in one of 17 countries.
I know we are all financially over-stretched, and that GWAS readers are a socially aware bunch already committed to many worthy causes. But I also know how much Ana has given to me, and that the world would be a sadder place if there wasn't little girls with promise like Ana in it.
You can follow the progress of Compassion Day via Facebook, Twitter or at the Compassion Day website. And, of course, you can sponsor a child at Compassion.com.au. And check out the Compassion crew's video below!
"I believe it's meant to be, darling; I watch you when you are sleeping, you belong with me; Do you feel the same? Am I only dreaming? Or is this burning an eternal flame? Say my name, sun shines through the rain, a whole life, so lonely, and then you come and ease the pain. I don't want to lose this feeling..." - The Bangles, "Eternal Flame"
Girl With a Satchel