Poverty has created a terrible cycle of devastation in African communities, however the team at African Enterprise has spearheaded an amazing community intervention in Rwanda to prevent the terrible impact of poor nutrition and hopelessness.
Through the Women’s Self-Help Empowerment Groups, AE is training community leaders to bring kids back to health, give new hope and purpose to families and provide a sustainable future for the families through up-skilling women in particular.
In the country area of Rwamagana Rwanda, 30 families, represented by women and children, have collected together to learn how to grow crops, make cleaning products, soya milk, juice, and create basic foods from a variety of products especially sweet potatoes.
Janette Musabyemariya, the community health volunteer, has given up her house and garden for this purpose.
“In the past three years that we have established this initiative, we have achieved so much”, she said. “Our community was very down, with children’s growth stunted and a side-effect of high levels of alcohol abuse particularly amongst the men.
However as a result of what AE has done for our community, it has lifted us up, empowered women, helped given the men hope and the teaching of AE has spread throughout the community.”
As a result of growing crops and now raising farm animals, the community’s access to nutritious food has meant the children are no longer suffering from malnutrition. To help ensure community health standards are being met, each week, the children are weighed and fed with a community provided meal.
“Our hope is that we will be able to sustain this model over the long term”, Janette said. “AE is like a parent to us and we a growing child. We want to expand out model and teach many more people in Rwanda. We thank God for all that He makes possible through your prayers and financial support.”
Ben Campbell is the CEO Africa Enterprise and Laura Bennett is a contributor for African Enterprise and radio host at Hope 103.2 based in Sydney.