How does Compassion choose which children to register into the programme?
We work in partnership with local churches in some of the world’s poorest communities, to identify and support children at the greatest risk. We work with children from all faiths and backgrounds.
We’d love to sponsor every child, but our resources are limited, so we focus our support on the poorest families. The beauty of working through local churches is that project staff understand their communities better than anyone. They are in the best place to identify children with particular needs such as chronic illnesses or malnutrition and those who are orphaned or currently unable to attend school.
Our project staff meet with the families to better understand their circumstances and to ensure they are happy for their children to participate in a programme run by the local church. Compassion projects will usually register only one child from each family as this enables us to reach out to as many families from the local community as possible. In exceptional circumstances as many as three siblings can be registered. To gain maximum benefit from the programme, all the new children we register must:
- Be between three and nine years of age
- Be able to walk to the project from their home
- Have the consent of their parents to attend the project.
Because all our programmes are run through local churches, there are plenty of opportunities for families to access things such as health screenings, nutritional advice and support, parenting workshops and other church activities. Sponsored children often share what they learn at the Compassion project with siblings and many lead their entire families to Christ, too. Sponsors are also able to bless the family of their sponsored child directly with family gifts that can be used to improve their lives.