Greeting cards spell joy for sponsored children

Recently, while working on a video project in Malawi, I had the chance to see a group of young children eagerly waiting as World Vision staff members delivered their sponsors’ greeting cards to them.

If you’re a child sponsor, you’ve most likely seen these cards in the mail. World Vision sends them to you throughout the year for special occasions -- Christmas, Easter, your sponsored child’s birthday, etc. -- so that you can sign them and mail them back to us. As they come in, we package them and send them to the appropriate World Vision sponsorship programs around the globe, where they are distributed to the children.

At times, I’ve wondered whether it’s really a big deal for me to remember to send a card back. Would my sponsored child really care whether she got one or not?

Then I saw how the cards are handed out. Because World Vision distributes over 1 million of these to sponsored children every year, our staff often give them to the children when they are at school or in other group settings. It's an efficient way to pass out the cards.

And this is what I saw at a school in Malawi: Expectant, even anxious little faces with eyes fixed on the mail bag as a large group of sponsored children waited and hoped their names would be called to receive a card or letter. Joy lighting up faces and shouts of delight as names were called and the luckiest children began examining the cards and playing with the stickers and other activities inside.

Greeting cards spell joy for sponsored children | World Vision Blog

These children in Southeast Asia are thrilled to receive greeting cards from their sponsors.

At this particular school, a bright-eyed little girl named Naomi shyly asked the translator if I would deliver a message: “Will you ask my sponsor to send me a card? The other children get them, but I never have.”

One of the first things I did when I returned to the United States was to fulfill my promise to Naomi to write a letter to her sponsor with just that message. But, then it occurred to me -- why stop there?

So, I’m asking you today: Please watch for the next World Vision greeting card in the mail, sign it, and send it back to us.

Every sponsored child wants to hear from his or her sponsor. Greeting cards are treasured. I’ve seen them carefully stored in small boxes and proudly posted on walls in homes.

Poverty has a way of sending children the message that they don’t matter. With the simple act of signing and mailing back a card, you offer your child the tremendously encouraging reminder that someone far away thinks they are important and cares very much about their hopes and dreams.


When you return your greeting card, you can include a $5 donation to help pay the cost of international shipping and handling if you wish, but this is optional. What's most important is the encouragement you’re giving to your sponsored child. If you are a sponsor who has not received World Vision greeting cards, but would like to do so, please call us at 1-888-511-6534.

Not yet a sponsor? Find a child today who is waiting for the love and support that will build stability for the present and hope for the future. Other lives will be changed -- and so will yours!

Read more on the World Vision Blog about: Letters

    Comments

    I will definitely be more prompt in sending my cards now that I know. It did seem to me in the past that World Vision was just trying to drum up a few more dollars by asking for a $5 donation. Also, I do not like how the cards are distributed. If it is in a group setting as described, then World Vision should provide some extra cards for children whose sponors did not send their card in on time....it's like taking candy to school and only giving it to some of the children.

    Hi Juanita! The greeting cards are automatically sent out to sponsors so they can correspond with their sponsored children. If you are sponsoring a child and have not been receiving these cards, give us a call at 1 888.511.6502.

    If you want to sponsor a child, visit http://bit.ly/Sponsorachild

    Thanks for asking!

    -Jonathan, WV staff

    I would love to sign up and do this how can I send a greeting card to someone?

    Wonderful to read how special these cards are to the sponsored children! I have sent my little girl two letters and one card since sponsoring her in October. I anxiously await receiving a note back from her... but that's clearly not what it's about. The joy I have in praying for her and sending her cards and small items has been one of the greatest blessings of my life.

    I AM A SPONSOR (several years now) OF A CHILD IN ETHIOPIA- LITTLE GIRL, Whose BIRTHDAY IS IN MAY, and I AM SO HAPPY MYSELF WHEN I RECEIVE LETTERS, etc. FROM HER, or THEY (World Vision) SEND ME a COPY of her REPORT CARDS, PICTURES (with family)or of her WITH SCHOOL CHILDREN. She has UNIFORMS NOW, and ATTENDS School REGULARLY, ( the ONLY child in family WHO CAN) SINCE MY SPONSORSHIP.I SEND LITTLE PACKAGES All year through. HOWEVER, I AM SAD THAT I CANNOT afford to PURCHASE a few HENS (Chickens) or a GOAT or a COW for them. THIS WOULD ENABLE THEM TO HAVE EGGS and MILK daily for family and to SELL, as NEEDED INCOME to aid FATHER (farming is ONLY INCOME).
    I lost income at DEATH of HUSBAND and DAUGHTER. I WANT TO DO SO MUCH MORE. Will you all PRAY for me FOR INCREASE and Blessings, that I MAY PURCHASE for FAMILY WHAT THEY NEED to SURVIVE, and NOT REMAIN in SUCH an IMPOVERISHED state.? Thanks, JB

    When you said Malawi, my eyes started scanning the picture to see if my boy was there. Exciting to think he might have been!

    Hi Donna. Thanks for asking! The cards are specifically for sponsored children. If you do sponsor a child but aren't receiving the calls, give us a call at 1 888.511.6502. If you'd like to sponsor, choose a child here: http://bit.ly/Sponsorachild! -Jonathan, WV staff

    Great piece! In this day of electronic mail, a handwritten letter says "I care enough to send the very best"...a part of me. I would like to correspond more often, but am uncertain to what is appropriate with the language and culture barrier. But our God breaks the barriers of my prayers for her (in Haiti).

    woah! i was just thinking yesterday about this!!!! i rarely send them. and was thinking i wonder if they get one thats not signed, or if all the other kids get one and they dont! and felt awful. then today this message!!! God is amazing. Time to send a card to my child : )

    I did not realize the cards are that important. I will be more prompt about sending the cards back

    Please do not make your child be just another monthly bill. I have sponsored a boy in Albania since 2001 and we have built such a wonderful relationship through the cards and letters we have written to each other, that I consider him part of my family. See your child through your heart. It's not about the money, it's about showing loving a child, as Jesus loves us.

    Glad I read this. Thanx

    Thanks for the reminder. I write to my child often but haven't always taken advantage of the cards you mail out. But I certainly will now. I love corresponding with my sponsered child and know the joy I get when one of her letters arrives in the mail.
    Thank you to World Vision for the marvelous job they do keeping the child and sponsor connected and nuturing a relationship between the two.

    Would like to know how we can just send a regular letter and perhaps a photo or two to our sponsored child.

    If you would like to know about how you can send a letter, go to worldvision.org. This wonderful organization is always looking for ways for sponsors to connect with their child in these busy times! We can now email, send letters, ect on line. My child is now 18 and these cards and letters are stll a joy to him. call 1-800-472-7863 for more info.

    Thank you for letting me know how much this means to a child. I will try to do a better job of communicating with Lydia.
    Barbara Bell

    I'm a first time sponsor, my child's Birthday is the same day as my Father's. I have not received a card for her...do you have e-cards...can they receive those?

    Hi Susan. In most cases, sponsors receive birthday cards to send back for their sponsored children well in advance of the child’s birthday. However, as a new sponsor and depending on when your child’s birthday falls, it’s possible that you might receive the card a bit after their birthday. (By next year, you will be in our system for sending cards and that won’t be a problem.) To receive a birthday card right away, you can give us a call at 1.888.511.6502 to request that we send you one. Although we don’t have e-cards at this time, you can quickly send an email note to your child by visiting http://my.worldvision.org/send-email. -Jonathan, WV staff

    Sometimes I don't send the cards because my sponsored child, in Rwanda, even though in an elementary grade, is now 17 years old and the cards seem as if they are for younger children.However, I don't want him to feel left out. Also, can you advise me as to what I can send him on my own? I used to squeeze tee shirts into the small envelopes, but now he's too large.

    Actually for Rwanda, I know that there is no longer a size limit for packages, so you can put a t-shirt for him in a larger package. Or you can always pick out a card that is more age appropriate and send it to him :)

    I appreciate these fun cards that were specifically designed to bring a smile to my sponsored children!

    Because some of the cards seem designed to appeal to the younger children I simply find (purchase or make) and send a card that I think would be more age appropriate for that individual child.

    Purchasing colorful paper at the local craft store on which to write your letters is another fun way to bring a smile to your child!

    Just please, for your childs sake - write to them regularly to let them know that you cherish the opportunity to be a part of their lives!

    Keep up the great work World Vision!

    Boy, did your letter hit home! I have sponsored many children for the past 5+ years and have never sent a Card. Shame on me!!! Never again will I not send my children their cards.

    amen. I will be more intentional about sending my cards back.

    I was very excited to read your blog. Since I've been a sponsor to a boy in Kenya, I have always signed a message on the cards and put them in the mail right away. I've always thought the children love receiving the cards, and when I read your blog and saw the photo of those joyful faces, I could see how much the correspondence means to them.

    I realize now that sending a message of love on these special cards seems like a small gesture for us, but to our sponsored child, it's a link to a world they could only dream about. Thanks so much for your communication with us, the sponsors, and showing us a personal glimpse of the children's hopes.

    I was glad to read that the children look forward to receiving the cards. I enjoy sending them to my sponsered child.

    I have had a concern however that envelopes with gifts I have sent,have not been received. At times I have gotten an acknowledgment but once I even received something that had the wrong childs name on it. I am not looking for appreciation but I worry she may not even be receiving the gifts.

    Hi Karen,
    Thanks for sharing your concerns with us! Your experience is very important to us, and we will be happy to follow up with you if you would give us a call at 1 888.511.6502. After sending a gift or letter to your sponsored child, it may take three to four months before you receive a reply, but if you don’t hear back, please don’t hesitate to give us a call. -Jonathan, WV staff

    I admit I have not sent many cards back because it makes little sense to me how these children benefit from "projects/lessons" that are in English. <aybe you should address that issue in your reminders/pleas to send back cards.

    Even if they cannot understand the language, the act of love you send to them speaks a thousand words.I hope you will take the time to send your cards to your child. It means the world to them.

    Hi Holly. Great question. Messages on greeting cards are printed in at least two languages: English and the most appropriate language for your child’s country—French, Spanish, Portuguese, or Swahili. In cases where English is an official language of a sponsored child’s country, English may be the only language on the card. The cards also usually include a greeting (such as “Happy Birthday” or “Hello”) in the child’s unique language (over 100 languages are used). If a sponsor includes a note to their child in the card, staff members will translate the note before giving the card to the child. -Jonathan, WV staff

    How rewarding it is to know that our letters and cards bring such joy to the children. I sponsor two girls, one from Sri Lanka, and the other from the DRC, and I too feel such joy when I receive a letter or card from them. God's work is so amazing.

    Im glad to hear that the children get excited over the mail they receive. I wonder if they can only receive the cards you sent to us on special occasions or can we randomly send an additional card that we buy from Walgreens, etc.

    Thank You so much for bringing this to my attention, I definitely want my sponsored child to know how very special and important he is to me. I have his latest picture on my dresser with all of my children and grandchildren. I have never received any of the cards. That is a wonderful idear. I will call today and ask to receive them.

    Thank you for taking the time to remind us to sign and return our children cards. God Bless

    Please send me some cards.

    I would love to receive the greeting cards. Thank you. I will send donation when I receive the cards.

    Please let me know how to get these cards. Thanks.

    Hi Patti. Thanks for asking! Your question is similar to Donna's below so I'll give the same answer:

    The cards are specifically for sponsored children. If you do sponsor a child but aren’t receiving the calls, give us a call at 1 888.511.6502. If you’d like to sponsor, choose a child here: http://bit.ly/Sponsorachild! -Jonathan, WV staff

    Am I only able to sign the cards or can I write more? I just recently sponsored a child in the philippines and I hope to actually talk to my sponsor child.

    Thank You,
    Chris Jellum

    I have been a sponsor for about 7 months now, and I absolutely love it.
    I have been thrilled with the opportunity and blessing to bless others who are in need.
    The response that I have received from my sponsored child and family are overwhelming, and satisfying and a true blessing on how God moves toward helping others.
    every time I receive correspondence on my sponsored child, it warms my heart knowing that I am able to help change the lives of those in their community and directly for the family.
    Praise God, Jesus Christ in all things good.
    Tom Tanglos

    Hi Tom,

    I am so glad that sponsoring a child has been such a blessing to you! Where does your sponsored child live?

    Thanks,

    Lindsey, WV Staff

    my sponsored child live in Guatemala, I am thankful World vision has been playing a role there. I have viewed youtube and have seen many unfortunate areas, I continue to pray that the villages in areas most needed are for filled.

    Best,
    Tom Tanglos

    Bless you for telling the story of Naomi, just to imagine the joy on my boys face as he opens his cards or letters is motivation. I don't know that people know or realize that this is how the mail is delivered.

    (1) My sponsored child's birthday is December 18. Will World Vision send out a birthday card for me or I have to send the card myself?

    (2) I am grateful that the child's family has spent the money I donated on the clothing and a calf. I was surprised that a pair of shoes(sneakers) cost 1/4 of the calf. I am not questioning the spend, but it will be greatly appreciated if anyone may shed some light on the cost of living in Ethiopia.

    (3) will the donation for my sponsored child's birthday go to her and her family prior to her birthday or just a community birthday party? If it is a community birthday party, how often and is it held regularly?

    Thanks to anyone who response to my questions in advance!!

    Hi Sue,

    Thanks for sponsoring a child and being so involved in their life! Since you have questions about your specific sponsored child, why don't you give us a call at 1-888-511-6548? Let me know if you have any other questions.

    Thanks,
    Lindsey, WV Blog Manager

    Why not pay a village person to return the childs message by email? It should be far cheaper then sending the reply thru the snail mail. I'm sure that the 4 month wait to get an answer to questions is a big problem for many potential sponsors. Also I never received a card for Easter and the birthday card needs to arrive very soon to be sent back on time.

    I sponsor children in Albania, Peru, and the Phillipines. I have thought of sending them t-shirts from my state, but the envelopes are too small. It was mentioned on one of these posts that Kenya does not have a size restriction. What about my sponsored children' countries?

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