Through advocacy by SURF, in 2005 the UK Department for International Development (DfID) awarded a grant of £4.25 million to two of SURF’s principal partner organisations, AVEGA Agahozo and Solace Ministries, for an antiretroviral treatment programme to support 2,500 HIV+ women survivors and their dependents. Funding ended in March 2010. It has achieved much, enabling 3 of our partners to establish dedicated health clinics as well as develop the infrastructure to holistically care for beneficiaries (through income-generating activities, psychosocial counselling and hardship support).
SURF has delivered nine projects funded by Comic Relief including a £1 million house building programme in 2006/7, constructing 362 homes to provide shelter for 1,810 survivors. 50 memorial sites across Rwanda have been constructed to provide a decent burial for over 300,000 victims of the genocide. A new grant has been secured to extend income-generating activities to HIV+ women survivors through to 2012.
Funding from the Charities Advisory Trust has enabled 15,000 survivors to start-up small businesses – ranging from coffee growing to beekeeping. SURF’s advocacy work, funded by the Sigrid Rausing Trust was instrumental in securing the new Gender Based Violence Law which came into effect in 2009. Through Foundation Rwanda, we support over 500 children born of rape to women survivors. With the UK Conservative Party (since 2007, we have facilitated their annual international social action programme to Rwanda – Project Umubano) we established Rwanda’s first Education into Employment programme.
In the UK, SURF has supported survivors of the genocide since its establishment in 1997. We have two strong partnerships, securing access to legal representation through Redress, and trauma counselling through the Medical Foundation.