Thursday, 25 July 2013

Clarks 100 things - writing to a penpal


You might have seen my recent post introducing Clarks new initiative '100 things to do before you are 10'. The first 50 things have been launched for summer and the next 50 will follow in the autumn.

We are busy working our way through some of the suggestions and having great fun as we go.

Our latest venture has been to get JJ to write to a pen pal (number 38 on the list), to be honest this is something we said we would start doing a few years back but it seems to have got forgotten. No better time to make it happen than now!

Back in 2005 my husband and I attended Spring Harvest, a big Christian conference held at Butlins each year and this was when we found out about Compassion, a Christian charity that helps people to sponsor individual children abroad. We knew straight away that we wanted to join in and the £21 per month was pocket change to us and could mean such an amazing amount to a child abroad.


At the time our JJ was just two years old and we said that is was really important for him to understand how fortunate he is and to know about the difficulties children in other countries face. I'm very pleased to say that we still sponsor Carl-Henri, the little boy from Haiti that we made a commitment to 8 years ago and we now also sponsor Priya, an Indian girl that we took on a couple of years back after dh returned from a mission trip to the country.

Carl-Henri is now 14 and we have watched him grow up in photos, the pictures he draws for us and the letters we receive. The children are read these letters and know about our sponsored children as there are photos on display in the house but now it is time for them to take their relationships to the next level. Today I sat JJ down and asked him to write to Carl-Henri to tell him what he has been up to and to be sensitive about what he shares, as Carl-Henri will not have access to all the privileges JJ has.

JJ chose to share that we had been on holiday and he had enjoyed playing in the sea and making sandcastles with his Grandad. He then talked about our move to a Christian centre in the countryside and his new love for football, something he shares with Carl-Henri. We then added a photo of JJ and his sisters having fun on the beach.


JJ tells me he enjoyed writing his letter and he is looking forward to receiving a reply back from Carl-Henri and one day he hopes to meet him - how awesome would that be?

Disclosure: I was provided with Clarks vouchers to take part in this initiative. I have not been told what to write and I remain honest.

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