Compassion International’s “Change the Story: The Compassion Experience” Is Coming to Simonton

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Interactive Tour Immerses Visitors into Daily Life in Another Country

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We built ‘The Compassion Experience’ in order to really bring the developing world to America.

Compassion International, a leading authority on child sponsorship which releases children from poverty globally, will be bringing its “Change the Story: The Compassion Experience” tour to the Simonton area March 8-11. The event will educate visitors about the realities of life in poverty as well as provide an international experience to visitors who may not ever have the opportunity to travel abroad to a developing country.

The three-day event will be set up in the parking lot of Blessington Farms at 510 Chisolm Trail in Simonton, Texas from March 8-11. There, visitors will be invited on a 20-minute, self-guided journey where they will be immersed in the lives and stories of one of three children living in India, Uganda or Bolivia. Each child’s story starts in hardship but ends in hope.

"We are very excited to be able to partner with Compassion International for this event,” said Lynne "Nonnie" Johnson, owner of Blessington Farms. “Compassion is a great organization that is meeting the physical and spiritual needs of poor children throughout the world. Dave and I felt like this event was the perfect venue for our young grandchildren, who sponsor children in Kenya through Compassion, to get a more realistic view of what poverty looks like in the developing world. We are sure that it will be an eye-opening and heart changing experience for them."

The experience includes 3,100 square feet of exhibit space, featuring replicas of the homes and environments of these three Compassion beneficiaries. The event is free and family-friendly.

“We built ‘The Compassion Experience’ in order to really bring the developing world to America,” said Mark Hanlon, Compassion International’s senior vice president of global marketing and engagement. “When people think of poverty, they often think of the lack of things, the lack of stuff, the lack of money. Those are all symptoms of poverty. The real issue of poverty is the lack of hope. Through our holistic child development program, Compassion stirs hope in children. And you’ll see that hope come to life at this event."

The tour is highly interactive, using individual iPods and headsets to offer visitors a sense of what life is like in extremely poverty-stricken areas around the world where more than 1.4 billion people are living on less than $1.25 per day (USD). In the areas Compassion serves, one in five children die before the age of five, mostly from preventable causes, and 101 million children worldwide do not attend school. Tour goers will have the opportunity to “change the story” of children living in poverty by learning more about the issue, as well as Compassion’s child sponsorship program, which tackles global poverty one child at a time. Compassion currently serves more than 1.4 million children in 26 of the world's most impoverished countries.

For more information about “Change the Story: The Compassion Experience,” visit, @ChangeTour on Twitter, and on Facebook.

Compassion International is the world’s leading authority in child sponsorship. Compassion revolutionized the fight against global poverty by equipping the Church to develop children out of poverty to become responsible and fulfilled Christian adults. It is the only child sponsorship program to be validated through independent, empirical research. Today, Compassion partners with more than 6,000 Christian churches in 26 countries to release more than 1.4 million babies, children and students from poverty in Jesus’ name. Compassion has been awarded the highest rating for financial stewardship and transparency for 12 consecutive years by Charity Navigator, America’s largest charity evaluator. For more information on the ministry, visit or follow them on Twitter at @compassion.

Blessington Farms is a 40-acre, U-pick berry farm in Simonton, TX (40 miles west of downtown Houston) with lots of fun, farm-themed activities for the family like hay rides, giant slides, games, a sand mountain, pedal cars, animal encounters and seasonal berry picking (strawberries during March).

Visit for berry picking prices or admission into Farm Funland.

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Chris Hoffman
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