Posted on: Tuesday, June 9th, 2009
I have returned home now two days and the thoughts of being in Rwanda on such a mission are quietly fading. As I write this letter I am invigorated with the awareness that the trip has been successful on many levels: Our exposure as a team, opportunities to see counsellors learn self-care, training trainers who will pass on what they learnt, meeting with the government leaders to hear how Rwanda sees itself as a future hub of East Africa, possible leads for future collaborative work with individuals and organizations in Rwanda and many more…
I have been trying to summarize the top three highlights from the trip:
One of our team members captured my sentiment in the words “Rwanda is a nation ready to re-build!” That was my impression bar none. There is so much potential waiting to be unearthed and the people seem ready to be assisted in developing that potential, in themselves and in their country.
The people have a fervent devotion and faith in God. Considering the atrocities of genocide, the countless lives lost in houses of worship, the overwhleming sense that maybe God abandoned them, I was awestruck by the persistent faith that many have especially when asked ‘what is it going to take to heal this nation?’ Many will tell you that forgiveness is necessary and that it will take a miracle of God for that to happen and they are praying, trusting and hoping that it will happen. There are numerous stories of survivors living and working actively with perpetrators and spreading the message of forgiveness.
They want to do things differently. When faced with the prospect of multitudes of orphans, the state did not institutionalize them, the people offered to adopt them. There is one family made up of a father and his three children, a mother with her two and three more adopted ones! The motorbike taxi drivers all have green bibs, a license number and phone number printed boldly on their helmets and on the last Saturday of the month between 9am and 12 EVERYBODY gets involved in ‘ungamano’ cleaning up the city, public areas and community together!
More pictures on facebook