2011 in Review

Each year we publish a formal annual review of our work, but we take this opportunity to flag up some of our highlights of the past year:

New projects
– Rolling out a new legal project led by a team of interns from AERG and coordinated by SURF to document legal cases of survivors, in partnership with Redress.
– Developing a new Wellness Centre managed by AVEGA in Cyangugu for genocide widows in the Western Region, funded by INSPIRE!africa.
– Establishing a new goat farm in Nyagatare developed and managed by AERG, and funded by Good Gifts.
– Launching the Kigali Language Exchange, a new English language school in partnership with AERG.
– Forming a new handicrafts group in Ntarama, based on the successful model of the Abasangiye Co-operative in Kayonza, funded by Sainsbury Family Charitable Trusts.

Scaling up projects
– Extending the Ntarama Health Centre to include a health education wing, and an operational hospitalisation ward, through funding from Network 4 Africa.
– Scaling up work against gender-based violence (GBV) through two new projects managed by AVEGA and Kanyarwanda, funded by the Sigrid Rausing Trust.
– Increasing access to school for more children born of rape to women genocide survivors, through our partnership with Foundation Rwanda.

Sustaining projects
– Sustaining wraparound support to over 2,000 HIV+ women survivors in membership of Solace Ministries and AVEGA, through funding from Comic Relief.
– Coordinating of an innovative two week capacity building practicum for nine of our partner organisations with the UK Conservative Party.
– Organising a Parliamentary commemoration in the UK to mark the anniversary of the genocide, in partnership with the APPG on the Great Lakes.

There have been many challenges through the year as well, and we sadly lost two great supporters of our work: Christopher Shale and Roger Diski. However, thankfully we have managed to not only sustain the work of our partners, but to extend it.

All of this work is made possible through a remarkable team of staff, interns and volunteers working at our office in Kigali, and directly with our partners. I would like to take this opportunity then to thank in particular Gabo, Vincent, Cat, Ariane, Lilliane, Sam, Jude, Maia, Lucy-Anna, Léa, Mia, Jemma, Zack and Iona for their tireless, and at times thankless, work!

The commitment of our partner organisations in Rwanda is critical to enabling all of this work. Without their lead, SURF would not have a path to follow. And last, but by no means least, we thank all of our donors, only some of which I have highlighted above, and you our supporters for making all of the above possible!

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