Writing letters still has the same magic as it did back when it was the only way of communication!
Receiving a letter puts the broadest smile on your sponsored child’s face! When you write to your child you show them how much you care! So, here’s a few pointers to help you each month as you write a letter to your sponsored child.
A good place to start would be to understand your child and his/her context:
Love One More gives you detailed information about your sponsored child and the context in which they live. A deeper understanding of your child and his/her context will go on to strengthen your relationship with this new member of your family. So, take time to understand your child’s culture, regional feasts, holidays and celebrations, geography, community structure, and social beliefs to give you a better understanding of your child’s background and context. You could even learn a few words in your child’s local language!
So, what actually makes for a great letter to your sponsored child?
- Keep it short and simple
More often than not, it is likely that your sponsored child is not yet fluent in English. So, keep your letter short with simple English words. This would help them to easily understand your letter. In other cases it would also help the staff with easy and quick translation to your child’s local language.
- Be Positive
Children grasp the tone of your letter. So, be sure to stay positive and friendly in your letters to them. Be sensitive to your child’s family situation before asking them any questions. Try to avoid any photos of your material possessions. This again, is as a result of being sensitive to your child’s living conditions. You could focus on discussing topics such as favorite stories, age-appropriate trivia, profession or hobbies, how you celebrate holidays, life in your town, favorite memories, etc.
- Lavish encouragement
Writing itself could be a big task for your sponsored child. So, go ahead and be generous with the encouragement. You could comment on any progress that you have learned or observed in your child – such as in schoolwork, in a performance or even in his/her letter-writing. Be generous with genuine compliments and praise your child’s talents or skills that you may have discovered or been told. Remember your child, most often, lives in a setting that does not even take the time to notice him/her, let alone being appreciated and encouraged. Your words of encouragement are sure to boost your sponsored child’s self-esteem and serve as a powerful reminder that someone cares.
- Ask and tell
You want your child to know that you’re interested in knowing about them and hearing all that they have to say. So it is important to strike the balance between telling about yourself and asking questions to get to know your child better.
Many times, children being chatty and talkative, love to describe things and share experiences. You can ask open ended questions to get started. Some examples could be:
- What do you do on a normal day?
- What games or activities do you enjoy?
- What is your favorite way to spend an afternoon?
- Tell me about someone that has made your life better.
- Will you send me a drawing of your home or village?
- What are your favorite holidays? How do you celebrate them?
- What are your favorite subjects in school and why?
- Tell me about your favorite places.
- What are your hopes and dreams?
- What are they good at doing?
- You could also ask questions on his/her favorite sport, food, etc.
It is good to keep in mind that discussions and questions about material possessions should be kept to a minimum. Writing letters frequently to your child helps him/her to know that you are thinking about them and love them. So, asking just a few questions, probably two or three at a time will be better to keep the communication going.
- Keep the surprise element
Who wouldn’t love surprises? Go ahead and add to the magic by surprising your child. All it takes is sharing with them a photo of yourself or something you may have drawn from him/her. Stickers, postcards, birthday cards, coloring pages also make for great surprises.
When writing to your child, keep this mind:
S- Short and simple
A- Ask and tell
K- Keep the surprise
You can always get in touch with us if you have any further questions on how to write to your child and we’d be happy to help!