Brenda Howard and Joanna, a child she met on a Compassion trip to Ecuador. Brenda, Area Coordinator for the Advocates Network in Columbus, Ohio, has been a Compassion Child Advocate since 1995 and an Area Coordinator since 2000.
Brenda Howard can't tell the story of how she became a Compassion Child Advocate without laughing.
"I became an Advocate for the T-shirt!" she says.
Brenda, a 45-year-old occupational therapist and mother of two, was at a festival one day and saw Compassion T-shirts at a booth. "They were the coolest shirts and I asked if I could have one since I was a sponsor. They were really only for new sponsors, but the Advocate working said he would give me one. But only if I would promise to think about becoming a Compassion volunteer.
"So, I decided I could try it. I held my first Compassion Sunday in 1995 and I've been doing them ever since. I've never looked back! It's been a lot of fun."
In 2000, Brenda was asked to be an Area Coordinator for Compassion's Advocates Network. Now her main role is encouraging, motivating and training other Advocates in southern Ohio.
"I remind them that they aren't alone. I love letting them know they are a part of something so much bigger and that they are making a huge difference!"
At a 2006 special event, Brenda was honored by Compassion President and CEO Wess Stafford for helping 250 children find sponsors. "I want to take every child home, but my budget is limited," she says. "The need is much greater than I can meet myself. There are so many people out there who will help a child in need if you put the opportunity in front of them.
"That's what an Advocate does — help connect someone with God's plan for them. It's not hard. It just takes a little bit of time. And you can put as much or as little into it as you want. So become an Advocate! There's nothing greater than seeing a child linked with a sponsor."
Please join Brenda as she helps release children from poverty all over the world. Become a Child Advocate today!