A Father’s Perspective on Child Sponsorship

10/14/14

As Tim Pelczar listened to his friend describe the struggles of the children he’d met in Malawi, Tim couldn’t help but think of his nine-year-old son, Christian. What if Christian didn’t have enough food? What if he couldn’t go to school? Would someone help his son? “As a father, you don’t want to see any child suffer,” Tim says. 

 
Tim’s friend explained that many of the children he met in Malawi were no longer struggling because someone chose to sponsor them through Children of the Nations (COTN). But there were more children who needed help.
 
A picture of one of the children still needing a sponsor caught Tim’s eye. “I think you would be good for one another,” Tim’s friend said, pointing to the picture of the little boy named Staniel. 
 
Tim and his son Christian were excited be the 155th family to sponsor a child
Tim and his son Christian were excited be the 155th family to sponsor a child last year during COTN’s Be One sponsorship campaign.
 
That got Tim thinking. Becoming a sponsor would be a great way to teach his son about serving others. And sponsoring Staniel would challenge Tim to make some cuts to his family’s budget. But even more importantly, it would change Staniel’s life.
 
Staniel quickly became an honorary member of the Pelczar household. “We started reading up on Malawi, talking about poverty in the nation, and praying for Staniel every day,” says Tim. “It gave us mindfulness of other people’s conditions in the world.” But it was hard to feel a real connection to someone they’d never met. 
 
Almost a year later, Tim had the opportunity to travel to Malawi with a COTN Venture Team. This was his chance to meet Staniel learn more about Malawi. Christian was excited too. He couldn’t believe his dad would get to meet the boy they sponsored so far away in Africa.
 
“I saw all these kids around me who were my son’s age"
“I saw all these kids around me who were my son’s age and I thought about what it would be like for him to grow up in this environment,” Tim says.
 
It was an adventure Tim won’t soon forget. “I had about five kids attached to me the whole time,” Tim says. But when the team arrived in the village of Chirombo, Tim had one goal: spend as much time with Staniel as he could.
 
Staniel shyly greeted Tim. He’d dressed up for this special occasion and was wearing a button-down shirt.
 
“I gave him my full attention,” says Tim. He told Staniel how his family had been praying for him and would keep writing him letters. Staniel was touched and said he was also praying for them and would put their pictures up on his wall. “He was fighting back tears the whole time,” Tim recalls. “I could tell he’d never got that kind of attention before.” 
 
When Tim returned home, he was eager to share the experience with his son. Christian was so excited, he immediately began writing Staniel another letter. 
 
“It feels like we have a connection now,” says Tim. “This has opened Christian’s heart more to overseas missions.”
 
It’s caused Tim to re-examine his life as well. “I’ve been redoing my budget, cutting back excess spending in any area I can think of,” he says. “It’s made me really reconsider when I say I need something, do I really need it?”
 
Tim hopes he can go back to Malawi and see Staniel again soon.
                                            Tim hopes he can go back to Malawi and see Staniel again soon.
 
Tim hopes someday he’ll be able to sponsor more children, because he sees how God is using sponsorship to change children’s lives. 
 
“These kids wouldn’t have these types of opportunities if sponsorship wasn’t there,” says Tim. “It takes them out of survival mode and lets them know they can do other things with their lives. They’re not alone in the world, and God hasn’t forgotten them.”
 
You can make a real difference in a child’s life. Sponsor a child today!