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A Note for New Readers

Urukundo Village is an independent home for Rwandan children created and funded through Hope Made Real and its incredibly kind donors. We are not funded by any particular denomination or organization and welcome all who seek to help the children of Rwanda and create a better world not just for a child, but for us all. 

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Meet Jean Paul Nziyumanganya

Meet Jean Paul Nziyumanganya

We have a new boy, bringing our total number of boys to fourteen.

Jean Paul Nziyumanganya is fourteen years old.  He is in Primary 5 and a handsome young man.  His voice is currently changing.  I can hear it when he takes part in the song before meals and I smile.  I remember my boys during this time in their struggles to become men.

His father is unknown.  His mother abandoned him when he was 2 years old.  His caretaker was an uncle or neighbor who can no longer care for this boy.  He came to me on our road and spoke in a broken English “I am orphan.  I want to live with you.”  He was brave to do that and that kind of faith needs rewarding.  We have gone through the process and now we have legal custody and he is ours and has a home and a family who love him.  He is showing leadership ability with the younger kids and our little girls think he is the perfect big brother.  His goal is “to become a doctor for children.”  He is a happy boy and a very positive addition to our family.

The Progress on The Girl's Home

Check out the picture of the girl's home under construction last month.

Now check it out in this picture taken on June 25th.

The Girl\'s Home on June 25th, 2008

The progress in less than four weeks is great.  The girls are watching the work very closely. This is their home and they are excited. I really want for all of us to be in one place and so I am praying that we will be able to raise the funds to complete this house by November.

Thank you again to everyone who is helping to make this great work possible.

Cooking Food, the Price of Gas, and our New, More-Efficient Cooker

I'm sure everyone is well aware that the price of fuel has been going up.  It's been straining us here too.

Charcoal has become very expensive here because of the ban by the government on cutting trees.  This is, however, our least expensive way to cook.  Electricity is currently not possible for us and gas is expensive and can only be purchased in Kigali.  So we spend $20 to retrieve it and for $86 purchase a small tank that lasts less than a month.  There is no truck to deliver gas like in the US.

Looking for a solution, we discovered a new, much more efficient design for a cooker.  We had it build in a single day.  It is made of cement but has three cooking holes and uses a third of the charcoal and can burn scrap wood.  We have lots of that from old scaffolding.  It's a step in the right direction and makes sure we all have properly cooked meals.

Our new cooker

It may be reaching a bit, but it reminds me of the old Iron cook stove in my Gram's house when I was a kid.  Any way you look at it though, we're please to be doing more with less, making better use of the materials and gifts available to us.

Playing Football in the Fields

An open field

One day, a day care or clinic will be on this land, but until the funds come, the land will not sit idly by.  As children tend to do, praise God, our boys see the open land and immediately use it to play football (aka soccer.)  The boys are now using the basketball court and the cement is hard on the balls as well as the knees and elbows of the boys when they fall which is often.  Much like life, soccer is a fall down, get back up, and keep on going kind of game.  I think we need some kind of protection for the knees and elbows but until then falling on dirt will be much better than cement.

The Season's Disturbance is Global

In Rwanda, we are dealing with the change.  The dry season has finally come.  The wet season which normally lasts three months, lasted five.  You would think that is good but it surely confused the crops and those waiting to begin the harvest. Even though the rains continued, the growing season stopped.

The farmers are not sure when to plant the next crop.  We wonder, will the dry season also last five months?  When should we prepare the soil and plant?  This was not my problem but now that we have farm land and plan a garden, I also am concerned. I will however leave these decisions to those who are more experienced than I.