Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Emanuel in Peru

February 11, 2005

My sponsorship story of how Emanuel came to be part of our family is one of my favorites! In August of 2010, I traveled to Peru on an advocate tour with Compassion. This was my first Compassion trip and I actually didn't sponsor any children in Peru prior to the trip. I corresponded with two, whom I would meet on sponsor fun day, but didn't sponsor any. When my husband dropped me off at the airport, he said something along the lines of, "make sure you find a child to sponsor while you are there!" I had ordered a few child packets from the centers we'd be visiting prior to the trip, and took them with me in hopes of being able to meet these kids and then advocate on their behalf.

Our first morning in the country, we attended a church service at PE 427. As all the kids were leaving the service to go to children's church, I grabbed a Compassion staff worker, showed her Emanuel's photo and asked in my broken Spanish if she knew this boy. She looked at the photo and then at me...."This is my son!"

Someone set off to find Emanuel, someone else set off to find a translator, and soon I found myself surrounded by the entire Silva family.
I began explaining that I wanted a photo of Emanuel and that I would share his story and photo with my friends and family, in hopes of finding him a sponsor. And then I remembered my husband's words - his blessing for me to sponsor another child - and realized what an incredible opportunity this was. I committed to sponsoring Emanuel right then and there.

When I returned to my hotel room later that evening, I realized that I had brought along and extra backpack filled with shoes and gifts that were perfect for a 5 year old boy! I was able to give them to a Compassion staff person the next day and they were later delivered to my new boy.

Here are some more blog posts that I have written about that day:

Emanuel lives on the coast in Lima. They live in a brick house that is located near the school, hopsital, church and park. Their home does have phone, water, toilet and electricity. His father is Ronald and his mother is Elisa. His older brother is Pablo, and his sisters are Alexa and Kristy.

Filadelfia Student Center
PE 427 

greeting our bus as we arrived

the wonderful staff of PE 427

top left - with the backpack, shoes and gifts I had brought with me to Peru / top right - used $ we sent to buy a desk
bottom pictures - with gifts and supplies we were able to send

Other gifts he has received because of sponsorship include: shoes, clothes, bedspread, school supplies

food - quinoa, ceviche, chicken
color - green/blue
sport - soccer
story - Solomon
holiday - Christmas
place - beach

At one point we received this "photo album" from Emanuel. It was a collection of photos from his early years. How fun to see him as a baby and really young child! We've actually received several extra photos throughout the years.

a family photo

Miscellaneous info from letters:
  • wakes up at 7am / goes to bed at 8:30 pm
  • goes to school Monday - Friday / goes to project Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Sunday
  • attends and ecological school and learns to care for the environment
  • wants to play guitar
  • shares his outgrown clothes with other kids who have less than him
  • at the project: sings, reads Bible, does homework, plays with friends
  • in 2017, chosen as best goal keeper at soccer club
  • Aug 2017 traveled to Arequipa (white city) to visit uncle and grandparents

So many of Emanuel's letters have beautiful, colorful drawings on them. As I went through them all recently, I noticed that he would often draw a similar picture for several letters.

This one is Emanuel and his best friend Alex

"Thank you for teaching me in God's word."

"I say goodbye with a strong hug and kiss."

In this letter he had told me of a recycling program he had participated in,
and the drawing is representative of what he learned.

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