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What I Learned from My Compassion Experience


The Compassion Experience will be in Apopka this weekend.

REVIEW By Dale Fenwick

I had the opportunity to "preview" the Compassion Experience last weekend while it was in Winter Garden. The Compassion Experience provides the visitor with an interactive tour of life in a developing country.

Having been to several developing countries I thought the tour would be familiar, and in some ways it was. I was reminded of the time I visited a small village in Jamaica where the homes were built entirely of scrap corrugated metal. And my time in Rwanda where all of the cooking is done in outside kitchens using charcoal.

But this tour was different.

The guide gave me a headset and an iPod, and when I went through the door on the left I entered the world of Jey, a nine-year-old boy growing up in Kenya. The tour was narrated by Jey.

He told me what his life was like and how his mother made and sold illegal moonshine to feed him and his siblings. He described how his life on the streets got worse before it got better. And it got better when he started attending a school funded by Compassion International. And it got even better when a family in America began to not only sponsor him financially but send him encouraging letters.

But eventually Jey "graduated" from the Compassion program and was now on his own and back on the streets. I knew I was in the last room of Jey's tour and things were not looking good for him. I will not spoil the end, however.

The second tour took me to the Dominican Republic and the world of Yannely. Her story did not start the same way as Jey's, because she was already sponsored by a Compassion sponsor in America. In fact she introduced her sponsor, Dorthy, as a member of her family.

Yannely had never met Dorthy, but she knew her because of the letters she regularly received from her. Like Jey, Yannely's life, even with Compassion's influence, still had its ups and downs.

And that leads me to the lesson I learned. My wife and I sponsor two Compassion children. Kimberly lives in Ecuador. Angel lives in Guatemala. It is very easy to sponsor a child. $38 is charged to my credit card each month for each child. I get regular reports on their progress.

And I get occasional letters from each.

But I have not regularly sent letters to Kimberly or Angel. That will change. Jey and Yannley both stressed how encouraging the letters from their sponsors were. I left both tours with wet eyes thinking of the difference those letters made in the lives of Jey and Yannley.

I am now determined to do the same for Kimberly and Angel.


To learn more read this article: The Compassion Experience Comes to Apopka

This is a great event for families. Walk-ins are welcome, but it is best to make a reservation. You can do that using this link: Compassion Experience in Apopka

To sponsor a child, go here.


Dale Fenwick is the Publisher of The Apopka Voice.



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