Video of Fatao

Heading to the Know More Orphans conference in Birmingham today to speak about how sponsoring a child through Compassion International sometimes prevents orphans. According to one estimate, 4 out of 5 orphans are orphaned by poverty, not the death of mom and dad.

When parents are unable to meet a child’s physical needs, sometimes the only option in sight is to give that child to someone else who can.

Fatao is a great example. I can’t say he would have been orphaned without medical treatment from Compassion – given over to an adoptive family so that he could live. But if mom is earning $2 each day, how else is she to provide the $23,000 surgery to repair a hole in her son’s heart and save his life?

Because her child is registered in Compassion International’s child sponsorship program, he is receiving the surgery. It is paid for by Compassion’s Medical Assistance Fund. Donating money toward Fatao’s surgery keeps that fund replenished. Giving more than is needed to cover Fatao’s surgery will grow the fund.

Compassion is documenting every step of Fatao’s journey from Burkina Fasso to India for surgery. Follow it at or using Twitter hashtag #Fatao.