You are 7 years old. Your father died from AIDS and your mother works in the fields trying to make what little money she can to support you and your 2 sisters. You see struggle. Your mom can't afford to send you to school and while your mom works in the fields you are required to watch your 2 sisters. Leaving any hope of a childhood out the window. All you think is "This is my life. I will be working in the fields just like my mother." there is no hope. No dream. You go many nights hungry. But, then a man comes to your village and says to your mom, "We are looking for a child to register at our Compassion project, we want to register your daughter." You get excited. You hear that you are getting a sponsor. That sponsor sends you letters saying "I love you" and "You can do it" and "What do you want to be when you grow up?" and you can dream of one day being a doctor. You have loved taking care of your sisters, and you want to help others as well. And because of your sponsors letters, you have hope. You have had the same sponsor for years now and now its time to graduate the Compassion program. You are saddened by loosing your sponsor, but you can read the letters that your sponsor has written and you know now that poverty was your past, and now it will no longer be your future.
That is a fictional story, but one that can be mirrored by many kids living in poverty. To read a real letter that a former child wrote to her sponsor right before she, herself, graduated from the Compassion program in March 2012, go here.