A new crowd funding campaign, Incike Initiative 2015, is to be launched to support highly vulnerable, aged survivors in Rwanda. Incike is a Rwandan tech. initiative by young, ICT entrepreneur Mutangana Aphrodise, who has developed a mobile technology platform to raise funds for aged genocide survivors through local NGO partner AVEGA. The name INCIKE is a Kinyarwanda word commonly used today to describe the elderly survivors of the Rwandan Genocide against the Tutsi, who have lost everyone in their family and are entirely alone.
Mutangana Aphrodise was inspired by his meeting with aged widows during the 20th anniversary of the genocide, to develop a life-changing mobile crowd funding initiative, aimed at collecting money for the elderly widows. He says “For me success is not about earning – it is about giving” in a fascinating profile of Rwanda’s technology hub KLab initiative, which Incike is a part of (see Take Part Live video at minute 3.5). The 2014 Tech Support Incike Initiative took place from 7th April to 4th July 2014 and its aim was to raise funds to provide milk for elderly survivors in an effort to meet their dietary needs. Since then Incike has seen the need for a more sustainable initiative and it is about to launch a new campaign to support elderly survivors above the age of 70, whose family members were decimated. Their stories are heart wrenching and unbearable.
“Nearly 900 aged genocide widows struggle daily to put food on the table”, according to Daphrose Mukamazimpaka, the Executive Secretary of Association of Genocide Widows (AVEGA). AVEGA’s report last year, funded by SURF, provides evidence as to the grave situation for the aged who can no longer work productively and have difficulty with every day basic tasks. (“Current State of Care for Elderly Widowed Genocide Survivors in Rwanda”)
Nyirabukara told KT Press ; “We later realized that a single intervention was not enough and that our support for this very vulnerable group would have to be ongoing. Their needs went beyond nutrition and included clothing and shelter.” This was the reason behind the creation of the 2015 Tech support Incike Initiative, to provide shelter, food and clothing for elderly genocide survivors. Tech Support Incike Initiative aims is to build 20 houses that will each cater for 8 residents.
The Incike Initiative 2015 has an added objective, compared to 2014, and that is to create an opportunity to support the school fees (in TVET mainly and/or universities) for a number of young genocide survivors who dropped out the school due to lack of financial means.
According to KT Press the Incike Initiative has four contribution options in place in Rwanda including sending a text message to *654# and selecting the amount to contribute daily after every airtime recharge of Rwf 50, Rwf 65, and Rwf 100 per day. The Mergims platform for the Diaspora is also partnering in the work. Meanwhile, the rest of the funds can be deposited into the account of genocide survivors’ bank account. So far, more than 1400 people have contributed, through SMS, while the other platforms have received contributions.