AVEGA Agahozo is one of the key partners of Survivors Fund (SURF). It represents and supports widows of the genocide, and their dependents.
IRIN this week reported on the importance of the organisation in empowering genocide widows, as well as chronicling the challenges that they continue to face in Rwanda today.
SURF has supported the work of AVEGA since its founding, through a number of our major donors. Comic Relief has supported most recently an extensive shelter project for homeless widows, and continues to support core funding for AVEGA West (in Cyangugu). The Sigrid Rausing Trust supports gender-based violence work, and income-generating activities are supported through Good Gifts. Critical funding has been provided by the UK Department for International Development (DFID), which supports health clinics based at AVEGA Central (in Kigali) and AVEGA East (in Rwamagana) through a Care and Treatment Project for HIV+ women survivors.
One of the beneficiaries receiving support through this project is Marceline. Marceline is a member of AVEGA, and through homebased care delivered through an AVEGA community development worker, Rose, she has been able to rebuild her life. As she testifies in the short film below: “If it hadn’t been for AVEGA, I don’t think I would be alive today.”
Currently SURF is advocating for DFID to sustain their funding to this project through to December 2010, which is at risk of being wound down prematurely next month. As I prepare for a visit to Rwanda next week, this will be at the top of our agenda, to discuss how we can sustain the remarkable work that AVEGA has undertaken to date.
With your continued support, we hope that this will be possible.