Writing letters

Make the most of your sponsorship experience by writing to your sponsored friend!

As a sponsor, you'll receive at least two letters from your sponsored friend each year. Your sponsored friend would love to hear back from you, so we encourage you to write, too!

In 2018, Unbound handled 1.3 million letters from sponsored friends around the world to their sponsors.

Exchanging letters is a great way to learn about each other's family and culture, hopes and dreams. We often hear from both the families we serve and our sponsors that the letters and photos they receive become cherished possessions.

While your financial gift is a great help to the person you sponsor, it's only part of the reason that Unbound sponsorship works. Just as it's important for you to know that your sponsorship benefits a real person, it's equally as important for your sponsored friend to know that you're also real and that you believe in them.

A few words of encouragement can go a long way. Send a letter today!


How to send a letter

You can send letters to your sponsored friend either through regular mail or via eLetters.


We provide pre-printed labels to make it easy for you to write your friend. These mailing labels come with instructions for labeling your letter and envelope. You can request more mailing labels through email or by submitting your request online on the My Sponsorships page after logging in to your account. Remember that international postage varies by country. Talk to your local post office about International Forever Stamps to make sending letters by mail easier.


We also offer the option of writing an eLetter to your sponsored friend. While eLetters are not emails, they are an easy way for you to electronically submit a letter and photo that will be printed and delivered to your sponsored friend. Log in to your account to access the eLetter option on the My Sponsorships page.

Learn more about writing letters and eLetters to your sponsored friend.

Ideas for writing letters

Whether sent by mail or eLetter, a message from you can mean the world to your sponsored friend. Here are some ideas to get you started:

  • Offer encouragement and let them know you think about them often.
  • Ask about their school, neighborhood and hobbies.
  • Tell them what you loved about school or recall a favorite childhood memory.
  • Share about your background and family.
  • Ask them about their family members, friends and pets.
  • Talk about your favorite holiday tradition and ask how they celebrate holidays.
  • Tell them what the weather is like where you live.
  • Ask about their favorite foods, sports or activities.

Remember, your letter doesn't have to be long. Even a card with a brief note lets your sponsored friend know you care.

No packages, please

Our international offices will no longer accept packages. We ask sponsors not to send packages to their sponsored friends, as gifts can be lost, damaged or stolen in the mail. When packages do arrive safely, the time required for our field staff to pick up, process and deliver them can be considerable. Our policy allows our staff to focus on delivering sponsorship benefits, letters of encouragement and personal support to sponsored friends and their families. The best gift you can give your friend is a letter or card with some encouraging words. A photo of you or your family is also a great gift. It’s easy to send and will be treasured by your friend. Children and elders often say getting a letter from their sponsor is their favorite part of sponsorship. For more information, contact us at (800) 875-6564 or [email protected].

Privacy and child protection

At the heart of the sponsorship relationship is the ability to get to know one another and form friendships of mutual respect.

For this to occur, Unbound has developed a set of communication guidelines intended to provide a safe place for these friendships to flourish.

To protect the privacy of our sponsors and ensure that all communications with sponsored members are appropriate, we have our project staffs monitor all correspondence.

At this time, letter writing is the method by which all communications must take place. Additional information about these guidelines is contained in the child protection policy that all sponsors and sponsored members agree to follow.

View Unbound’s child protection and privacy policy

All correspondence is monitored by the project staff for appropriateness and the protection and privacy of both sponsored friends and sponsors.

It is against our child protection policies to be in unsupervised communication with your sponsored friend. Therefore, do not share personal contact information, including email, home addresses and telephone numbers, or communicate using social media tools such as Facebook or Twitter. Instant messaging systems such as Skype, AIM, iChat, and ICQ are also forbidden forms of communication.

Violation of this policy could jeopordize your friend's eligibility for sponsorship and your eligibility to sponsor.