It's not always easy for us to bring in new kids. We do our best to raise enough money to cover our monthly running costs for the boys that are currently living at the center, and sometimes just doing that is the most we are able to do. We wish we could take in all of the street kids in Rwanda but we simply do not have the means. However, due to the recent successes we have had with some of our older boys, we are now able to take in a few kids in need off the street.
MEET MANZI & FRANCOIS
At the end of 2016, we took in two new boys that now need sponsors. We helped them transition into a stable environment before we felt they were ready for sponsorship.
Manzi is about 9 years old. He has six siblings and most of them are on the street as well, though we weren't aware of that when we first brought him home. His father is extremely abusive, which is ultimately why he ran away. He spent about a year on the streets until Evode asked him if he'd like to come home and go to school. He would steal and beg for food. He wasn't very good at it and has the scars to prove it. Also, being so young, he was taken advantage of a lot by older street kids. Unlike some street kids, Manzi has never tried to run away once he came home. I, personally, had the privilege of watching him head off to school for the first time. He came home visibly proud and excited. He has incredible amounts of energy and wants constant attention. He is the cause of endless laughs too.
We believe Francois is about ten years old but we really don't know and it's always tough to tell. Francois's father is a soldier and was never really able to take care of him because he suffered from PTSD and could barely take care of himself. Francois's mother died tragically. His father re-married and a new family was formed, but Francois's father still couldn't help any of them. The situation got bad enough that Francois took to the streets. Francois got addicted to drugs and other problems associated with street life. However, some older street kids told Evode he should take him in if possible because he was so small and young. For the first few months, Francois was very difficult to handle because he had trouble breaking his bad habits from the street. However, he has really begun to turn around. School definitely helped with this. He too, got to attend school for the first time in his life and we found out that he is very smart! The sweetest part about Francois is watching how much he loves Evode. If Evode goes out to do an errand or something, upon his return, Francois will drop what he is doing so he can wait on the porch to see him come in. Then he will run to Evode to discuss the day and help him carry something if need be. He never misses it.
HOW MANZI & FRANCOIS ALREADY IMPACTED ME
Manzi & Francois really reminded me why we do what we do. I have been visiting the center for eight years now. I have known some of the boys the whole time and others for less time. It had been quite a while since I got to witness first-hand kids coming in fresh off the street. Just giving food, access to school, and a roof over their heads doesn't fix everything. I was reminded during those first days with the new boys that it takes consistent love and attention to change their minds and hearts from the street. I got to witness the beginnings of that change while I was in Rwanda. And I can't wait to see just how far they will have come when I return next year.
SPONSORING MANZI & FRANCOIS
When you sponsor one of our kids, we make the most of your generosity. We share updates about your sponsored child. We make it a big point to have all our boys hand-make either a letter, a card, a picture or something similar to send to their sponsors each year. This helps show the boys that someone they have never met cares about them. It is a bigger life lesson for them than one would realize. Having this relationship with their sponsor helps shape their perspective in amazing ways. For those so fortunate to visit the boys in the beautiful country of Rwanda, they further establish a truly lifelong bond. If this sounds like something you would like to help us with, please consider sponsoring Manzi or Francois.
To become a sponsor, please visit our sponsorship page.
If you have any questions at all, please do not hesitate to reach out.