Pedro, who grew up in the Dominican Republic, was so poor that he thought about running away so he wasn't a burden to his mother. He used to cry out to God, asking Him why he and his family had to suffer such hardships.
Then a Canadian teenager named Ashley talked her parents into sponsoring him. Ashley's parents were able to afford the $41-a-month fee by cancelling their second phone line. As Pedro said: "I am more important than a second landline." The money went towards Christian teaching, learning opportunities, nutritious meals, medicare, life skills and vocational training for Pedro. The young Dominican was able to train to be a computer software technician and now holds down a steady job.
One day his Mom came to him with a problem: "Son, you are making me fat. For the first time, Pedro and his family were able to eat meat, a rarity in the past. Pedro is able to provide for not only himself but his family.
Pedro's story moved us that night. We have always given to charity, but it was nice to be able to put a face and a name to charity. Rob and I decided that next Christmas, rather than going overboard buying gifts that we don't need, we should sponsor a child like Pedro. Afterall, a child is more precious than any gift under the Christmas tree.
Note: For more information about Compassion Canada, visit www.compassion.ca.
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