Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Moms and Babies - CSP

I've always loved little kids.  So, of course, it seemed natural to like the idea of Compassion CSPs.  Honestly though, I didn't know much about them.  However when I took the Compassion Advocates CSP call the other day, I got super excited!  All the info about CSPs was just so inspiring and amazing and encouraging and exciting!

So in the 1990s, Compassion realized that they need to reach children at a younger age than what they allowed into their sponsorship program.  About three-point-three million children die before the age of 5 each year from preventable or treatable causes.  Diarrhea, malaria, and and pneumonia are some of the causes of early childhood death.

Compassion realized this and started to initiate early childhood development programs.  They tested different prototypes to see what was successful and why.  Finally in 2003, fourteen CSPs were launched.

The CSPs were ideal.  Pregnant mothers were able to come to the project (or a skilled worker may visit them instead).  That is huge because studies have shown that if the mom is healthy and stable, the child is more likely to be healthy too.  The skilled workers (either professional nurses, social workers, or specially trained persons) check to make sure that the mom is healthy and doing well, physically and emotionally.  The mom also takes part in a Bible study and is encouraged to follow Jesus.

Compassion registers moms and babies from the time of conception to the age of two years.  This is really important because 44% of early childhood deaths occur during the neonatal period (during the first 28 days of life).  Brain development is almost wholly completed by age two and malnutrition peaks at that point as well.  If Compassion can intervene during that period, the child is more likely to grow and develop into an independent adult.

When Compassion saw the success rate of the CSPs, they switched all of the trial early childhood development programs over to CSPs in 2007.  And I am so excited to share that in January 2014, every one of the 26 countries that Compassion works in has a CSP!

Currently, the CSPs are ministering to over 28,500 babies and caregivers!  One thousand and twenty-seven professions of faith in Jesus were reported in the first quarter of fiscal year 2013.  Just think about it.  Now that these moms/caregivers are trusting in Jesus, their child(ren) are learning about Jesus at home and at the project.  What an amazing thing!

There is so much more I could say about the CSP.  But instead of rambling on, I want to ask you: Do you support or have you visited a CSP?  What impact have you seen the CSP have in the lives of the moms and babies?

(all photos courtesy of: Compassion International)


  1. I visited a CSP in Tanzania! It was really neat. I hadn't realized before the trip that the CSPs are like an add-on program to an already existing CDC. The curriculum in Tanzania is actually home based- the moms will come to the center sometimes for classes, check ups, and something like a playgroup, but the majority of what they do is in their home. They're visited about three times a month by someone from the project.
    Another amazing thing is the economic impact of the CSPs. The one I visited had a lot of learning opportunities and resources- more than the other centers. They grow fruits and vegetables, have started a tree nursery, have a chicken house as big (if not bigger) as most of the classrooms at the other centers....all of this brings in income for the center and teaches skills to the moms, who are able to turn those into livelihoods. If mom is earning some income, she can feed and take care of her family!

    1. Hey Jessi!

      That's so neat that you were able to visit a CSP in TZ!!! Yeah, isn't that really great - a lot of CSPs are home-based. A lot of new projects are starting out as a CSP and then when the kids are ready to graduate into the CDSP that is added. In Sri Lanka, that is how they started as a country.

      Wow, that's so great!! What a blessing to those moms and families too. I agree, the learning opportunities for the moms are really great.

      Thanks so much for sharing! :)

  2. I love, love, love CSP! I think of it as "sponsorship prevention"....ideally, if CSP is 100% successful, the children enrolled will be released from poverty before they are old enough for sponsorship. I know this doesn't happen often, but the fact that there is a program in place to release infants from poverty is amazing.

    Our CSP that we sponsor is in India and the letters we've gotten from moms in that program are so encouraging.

    I also saw CSP at work in Peru - both at the local church and through home visits. I think what is so amazing is what it offers the mother....we bought handmade crafts that the mothers had made as a result of their training in CSP. And the home visits are pricless!

    As a mother, I cannot imagine not having had the resources I had during my pregnancies and births. I had great doctors, classes, books, community and support.... mothers living in poverty don't have this. I learned so much from my doctors, classes and books I to eat properly, how to exercise, etc. This is what CSP is doing for these mothers.

    And the financial investment is so little compared to the results. I think every advocate should also sponsor a CSP for a couple reasons... 1. it's effective 2. you will know more about this important part of Compassion's ministry 3. babies (I mean who doesn't love babies) 4. it's affordable!!!

    Sometimes I find people who have the money to sponsor a child, but really don't want to write the letters (sad but true) I suggest CSP to them.

    Ok...I'm stopping now. : )

    1. Jill, that's a good point! The CSP could ideally release a child from poverty even before they are enrolled in the CDSP.

      That's so great that you support a CSP in India and that you were able to visit one in Peru. I remember that you visited one in Peru! I am sure it must have been wonderful to see the CSP at work in country!

      I agree, I think everyone should support a CSP! I so wish I could, but right now can't. I love that it is cheaper but still very effective.

      Thanks so much for sharing! I loved hearing about your experiences with the CSP!! :)

  3. How interesting and informative! Thanks for sharing,I didn't know that much about it either. Beautiful pictures,the mom and baby in that second to last one are gorgeous!

    1. Sure, Marilyn, glad you were able to learn some more about the CSP too! I know, I love all the CSP photos! They look so happy :)

  4. Amazing program isn't it! I hope to have the opportunity to visit a CSP in the future on a future Compassion trip :)

    1. Yes, it is an amazing program! I hope you can visit one some day. I am surprised that you didn't get to see one in Mexico.

  5. I sponsor a CSP baby in Rwanda (although I say baby...he's turning three next month so will be in a CDP rather than the CSP!). It's been such a joy to really watch him grow and develop over the last two years, and I'm so excited to be able to watch him grow even more as the years go by!

    1. Shelley, Irabizi is so cute! I almost forgot he was a CSP kiddo :) It will be so interesting to see what Compassion does with the CSP because I know that they're trialing individual sponsorships. It is so awesome tho that you will be able to watch him grow up from like the very beginning!

  6. The CSP is such an amazing program!!! We sponsored on in Peru and it actually graduated!! The community improved so much via Compassion's work that the pastor decided to help start up a new CSP in a neighboring church.

    I also loved taking the class on the CSP. It was so informative!!

    And I agree it's a great program to share with people who want to give but who don't want the relationship side.

    Great post!! Thanks for promoting this.

  7. Oh wow! That is so great that the CSP graduated and that the pastor was able to help start one at another church!! It really is such an amazing program!! :)