Former sponsored child in New Zealand to share her story – Bay of Plenty Times

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Filipina Keewani Cook is in New Zealand to share how her life was transformed by being sponsored as a child.

Te Puke is included on a speaking tour by Keewani Cook, who is visiting New Zealand from the Philippines to share how her life was transformed by being sponsored as a child through Compassion’s child sponsorship scheme.

Her inspiring and powerful story tells how the programme lifted her out of poverty.

She says as a child she lost siblings to treatable medical conditions and would often go to bed hungry and couldn’t afford to go to school.

“Me and my sister would beg our parents to buy us an apple, even a rotten apple, but my parents could not afford it,” says Keewani.

She was sponsored when she was 7 years old, and it changed her and her family’s life forever.

Having a sponsor meant she gained access to a meal every day and gained access to medical care and education. It also gave her the opportunity to study at university.

“I’m a living, breathing testament that sponsorship works.”

Today, Keewani is a physiotherapist who sponsors four children with her husband. She also speaks at events worldwide to raise awareness about the effectiveness of sponsorship, and how millions of children across the globe have been lifted out of poverty as a direct result.

In New Zealand, approximately one in 30 households sponsor a child.

Tearfund New Zealand’s child sponsorship lead Louise Haines says: “This tour will help bring the picture of the child on your fridge to life. It’s an eye-opening and rare opportunity to learn about the life-changing impacts sponsorship can have.”

Keewani is speaking in Te Puke on June 19 at the Orchard Church and in Tauranga on June 21 at Holy Trinity Church. To round off her tour in the Bay of Plenty, she will speak at Tauranga’s Abundant Church on June 23. Guests at these events will get to enjoy a traditional Filipino meal cooked by Keewani.

Event tickets are $15. To book, visit

Doors open at 7pm.

This post was originally published on 3rd party site mentioned in the title of this page

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