Friday, March 5, 2010

I never told you about our first day in Rwanda last year

The first visit customarily is always to the sector leader, who would be like a mayor of a city. We met in his office, which had no electricity. He had a laptop computer that was run on a solar panel positioned on the roof. You can imagine how difficult communication and infrastructure can be for a government without electricity. He shared with us the state of affairs in the sector that the community of Gisanga is found. I think the most startling statistics were that of the 30,000 people that he governs, approximately 20% are at dangerous levels of poverty. This means that they are maybe getting one meal a day, and they are barely surviving. The other statistic he shared was that only 20 families in his sector used paper money. In other words, every one else was on a bartering system, which is not bad in itself, but indicates the poverty level of the area.
His main goal for the sector was to get electricity to the area. This has not been a central goal for FH at this time, but the leadership at FH are always trying to take into consideration the needs of the community, and that came through on many occasions. They want to be a local organization, not just an international aid organization. Their care and concern in that way meant a lot to Troy and I, and we were really educated about the difference between partnership and dependency, on both sides of that relationship.


  1. Hey, Sara,

    Some dear friends of mine are missionaries to DR Congo. The situation in that part of the world is so awful. Glad to hear that you minister over there in Rwanda--so badly needed. Please keep posting.

    Take care and God bless!

    Tracy L. (Knoles) Tiritilli

  2. I'm so glad that you have the opportunity to help! I'll be praying for both you and the community.
    Susan Bernet Tolbert

  3. Sara, first thank-you for the song, I Saw What I Saw. It is powerful, beautiful, heart wrenching, inspiring, convicting.

    My husband and I went to Rwanda last February for the first time. My heart has been changed forever. In 1989 we began sponsoring a child in Rwanda who is believed to have been killed during the genocide in 1994. While sponsoring her, we had hoped to visit her one day. Instead last year we visited many genocide memorial sites and witnessed the blood stains on many church walls where so many died. Our hearts were broken. And yet, the children of Rwanda smile. They play, they dance, they sing with a resilience uncommon to American children.

    Since our trip last February, I have maintained several contacts with young college aged students. One, in particular, is a young filmmaker who recently returned for Germany where he attended debuted his film at an international festival. It was very well received. He is currently trying to secure funding for a documentary. Do you have any interest in or know anyone who could help fund this project? i told him I would try and help find some contacts for him.
    Laura King