The aftermath of the 1994 genocide in Rwanda saw dozens of orphanages rise to take care of over a million vulnerable youngsters who had been left parentless. Growing from just a handful of orphanages prior to the genocide to over 30 as of now the Rwandan government has plans of closing majority of the country’s children’s homes as a way of ‘child deinstintionalising ‘ through what is called the “child deinstitutionalization” (DI) policy.
This has come after several researches that has been carried out in Rwandan orphanages and different challenges have been pointed out for example sexual abuse, malnutrition, poor living conditions name it. This however has not fallen short of some orphanages that see the children as a source of income instead of the primary reason being the proper upbringing of the children. This is aimed at giving these children the feeling or sense of belonging in a family. On closure these children will be moved to specially trained foster families and where possible they will be taken to their extended families.
The executive secretary of the National Commission for Children Zaina Nyiramatama explained that “the D-I initiative will be grassroots-driven, part of a broader childcare policy where Rwandan communities again participate in identifying and solving the problems of their most vulnerable children.”
Adopting of children from the orphanages is also possible and highly encouraged so that these children are given a better shot at life in a comfortable home. Adoptions in Rwanda are authorized by the Ministry of Gender and Family Promotion which issues non-objection letters. You are therefore cautioned to ensure that the orphanage in which you are adopting is registered with Ministry of Gender and Family Promotion.
Here are some of the many orphanages you can look out for.
Over 52 orphaned children are supported by local authorities as well as the parish of Rwaza. These are split in two sections; one for children who are aged 9 and above and the other is for the younger children. The orphanage often receives help from well wishers as well as donors. It also hosts tourists from time to time. There is an education center and library that is not only open to the children but also to the community and the goal is to educate the community the advantages of conserving nature as well as national parks as a way of developing an interest to save the incredible nature they have in and around volcanoes national park.
Rwanda orphanage project
This is a center for children who have been living on the streets and it is located just outside of Kigali. They provide clothing, housing, health care, food, education name it to over 100 vulnerable children around Rwanda. This is made possible through donations from individuals with a good heart. It solely relies on charity of ordinary citizens as it doesn’t have a corporate or foundational support to achieve its goal of providing these children a decent place to call home.
Started by Rosamond Carr on her farm 18 years ago in the aftermath of the 1994 genocide, Imbabazi orphanage cares for the lost and orphaned children by creating and enhancing educational opportunities for the children and providing jobs for the community on the farm. Although the founder Rosamond Carr passed away on the 29th September 2009, the board of directors as well as onsite management team of Imababzi foundation have continued this legacy and operations there up to date. Once in Rwanda you will be amazed when you pass there and you can adopt one of these adorable children as well.
This is formerly known by the name Orphans of Rwanda. It is dedicated to assisting orphans as well as other socially vulnerable young people to achieve a university education to become an asset in the country. The selection process is highly competitive and over 4000 applications can be received in a year from children who are vulnerable yet desire to pursue an education. Students under this program have all overcome adversity and are being driven to pursue high ambitions.
The village de la paix
Home to around 100 orphans, this is situated in the outskirts of Kigali, Rwanda’s capital. There are 7 well built houses that house 12-14 children who are cared for by ‘mamans’ who are their substitute mothers. It has a nursery school and a sports ground where the children play. A community house was built where different social events are held and this has generated income for ‘Village de la paix’ when it is hired for conferences and weddings.
These are just a few of the many. Don’t miss visiting these orphanages during your stay here and carry something for these incredible children as well. Thank you.