“When we finally have a home – we will dance until the sun comes up!”
From April through July is Kwibuka 28, the 28th commemoration of the 1994 genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda. Kwibuka, meaning to remember, is a 100 day event, where Rwanda and the world mourn and commemorate the victims of this horror and stand in solidarity with the survivors.
Since 2007, Foundation Rwanda has been working to support the healing journey of women survivors like Christine, who was twenty-two years old during the genocide. She was raped repeatedly by countless men resulting in a broken back, leaving her in chronic pain and unable to work or provide for her family. She has carried on bravely in the face of failed spinal surgery resulting in sciatic nerve damage and sporadic paralysis.
“I have been running from house to house with this broken spine and my children for 27 years. My health situation is in great danger. I am afraid to die because I am worried my children would go on the street.”
With great thanks to all of you and to Christine’s Champions who helped Christine’s GoFundMe campaign go viral – BreAnn Whiat, Kelly Briggs, Ruth Schlossberg, Pia & Rob Cone, Eric Bonabeau, Deb Bedoya, Eileen Quast, Joan Shell, Meredith Bradshaw, Natalie Gelb, Sara Solfanelli, Nancy Brady, Lisa Leyba and Dan Kusnetz – we have raised over $21,000 of our $25,000 goal. Christine’s dream of having a safe place to call home will come true!
“I am overwhelmed by the support and love people have shown me. I don’t have words to express how grateful I am. I felt grateful since the day you told me about this campaign. The thought itself, made me realize that people think and care about me. I felt worthy ever since. Thank you so much!”
And in case you missed it… Foundation Rwanda has turned 15, and our annual report is short and chock full of good news!
This commemoration period, we stand in solidarity with Christine, her children, and the entire Foundation Rwanda community – as we celebrate the hope and joy embodied in Christine’s video message to you.
With gratitude and hope,
Jules, Liliane, Sam, Emilienne, David, Raban, & Mike
(The FR Team )
*Christine’s video was shot with her and her children’s consent and edited by Rwandan photographer Serrah Galos. A very special thanks to Serrah for donating his time and talent to document Christine’s story. Many of the photographs in FR’s annual report below were shot by Serrah as well.