From Lyme Regis to Peru

PUBLISHED: 17:07 01 April 2008 | UPDATED: 21:40 15 June 2010

A LYME Regis woman is working to raise awareness of child poverty across the world, having just returned from Peru. Rachael Pope, of Kingsway, saw first hand how charity Compassion works with churches in the country to link individual sponsors.

A LYME Regis woman is working to raise awareness of child poverty across the world, having just returned from Peru.Rachael Pope, of Kingsway, saw first hand how charity Compassion works with churches in the country to link individual sponsors in the developed world to a child in one of 24 of the world's poorest countries.More than 50 per cent of the Peruvian population live below the poverty line.Rachael is working as an advocate for the charity, which through its sponsorship programme, supports more than a million children.This ensures they receive education, nutrition and health care as well as social and emotional support.She said: "It was a great privilege to visit the homes and families of sponsored children."We met many people, who despite their financial poverty and extremely difficult living situations, showed such courage and dignity."It was also wonderful to see the hope and optimism of the children for their future from being part of the Compassion project and how the families are also helped."During the trip, Rachael met Liliana, who benefited from Compassion's sponsorship and now runs an internet business with her brother-in-law.Rachael said: "Liliana greatly appreciated her involvement in the project and receiving the letters, support and encouragement from her sponsor."We also met a paediatrician who told us that 130 children out of 1,000 died before their first birthday. "The most common problems for the children are respiratory diseases and malnutrition."As a physiotherapist working in the area of women's health in the NHS, I was particularly impressed with the Compassion Child Survival Programmes."These provided ante-natal care and support for some of the poorest mothers and care and monitoring for the children up to three years of age."Ian Hamilton, executive director of Compassion, said: "I have the utmost respect for advocates like Rachael who, in the midst of busy lives, make time to help more children escape from poverty.

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