Help to self-help for disabled and vulnerable children

Before we take you on our trip, we would like to share the vision generation and how we finally came across the HDVC (Help to self-help for disabled and vulnerable children) project in Rwanda.
In our last year at the Koblenz School of Physiotherapy, we became increasingly concerned with our near future. Questions – for example, about how to find a good start in working life or which subject area we would like to deepen our experience – are likely to concern every feldgling professional. Laura and me, we both found out at the end of final year that we were open for other experiences and wanted to see something of the world. From the initial individual thoughts, an increasingly concrete vision gradually developed – to experience physiotherapy abroad. Especially in a country where the health system is less developed and where our profession is not as present as in our home country. So we started looking for a suitable project from various sources. We were not focused on any country in particular. The only thing we knew for sure was that the work should have something to do with children. We searched the Internet, listened to people we knew and also to teachers and former students. The search for a project as we imagined it was more difficult than initially thought. Through the large organizations such as ‘internships’, ‘people abroad’ or ‘projects abroad’ you can find a huge amount of great and supportive projects for physical therapists, occupational therapists, speech therapists and many more. People in these organizations weh ad spoken to were always eager and very helpful in providing advice about the respective projects. However, we planned a stay of six to eight weeks and the costs for accommodation and catering excluding the flights for this period were simply too high for us. Considering that these organizations provide good support on site and protect you during the travel time, it is not our intention to discuss whether these prices are reasonable or not.
For our vision, however, it was crucial that we were convinced there must be other, less well-known projects in the world which do not have the chance to draw attention to themselves worldwide via internet or other media, but nonetheless would urgently be in need for support, especially subject-specific ones. We finally heard about the HDVC project in Kabuga / Rwanda from a private contact. He himself volunteered abroad for a whole year and therefore owns a network of contacts to projects all over the world. All we had was the information that there is a center for mentally and physically handicapped children in Rwanda where physiotherapists are needed. We were given a telephone number, which we called quickly and contacted the director of the center – Christine Mukeshimana. At the end of June we started exchanging the first messages. Then we had four months to plan everything necessary, book flights, clarify the visa, apply for a current passport and much more. The challenge was to plan everything alongside our exam preparations. During September, however, we were fully focussed on our exams, so we almost lost one month of planning. In the end we got the most important things organized: We knew about the project and the flights, the visa, the accommodation and the transfer from the airport was organized. Exactly how everything would work out in Rwanda remained uncertain until we arrived. The excitement increased with each single day the trip came closer. On November 1st, 2017 the time had finally come and our African adventure began at Frankfurt International Airport.

After a long flight with a stopover in Istanbul, we arrived in Kigali, Rwanda in the middle of the night and only with great difficulty managed to lift our heavy backpacks from the baggage line onto our backs.
In the whole airport, which was admittedly not very big, there was a strange silence and you could already feel the mild climate.
We quickly went to passport control and were amongst the first travelers at the counter. The employee began to examine our passports and visas with an extremely calm and incredibly low voice, unimpressed by the long line behind us. After what felt like ages, we were allowed to go on.

In front of the airport building we found ourselves in the middle of a green park and a bunch of taxi drivers. When one of the drivers offered us his cell phone to call our ‘host father’ who wanted to pick us up, we were very skeptical at first and didn’t really know whether we could trust this fellow. In the next few minutes, however, it quickly turned out that he was really just helpful and very friendly.
We spoke briefly to our ‘visiting father’ and saw a car speeding up a little later, from which Prosper got out with a gallant, broad grin and waving with both arms. He greeted us with the fleeting hug typical of Rwanda and helped us to store our luggage in an old right hand driven Toyota. The driver Rashid also greeted us warmly and we took a seat in the back seat – without belts, of course. When they noticed that we liked the music, they turned it up and we drove, bobbing to the beat, over the hills of Kigali, whose lights glittered in the dark. Twenty minutes later we were „at home“. Despite the late hour, our ‘host mother’ and boss Christine happily awaited us with tea and milk rolls. After a short chat, we fell exhausted into our beds covered with mosquito nets.
That was how our first hours in Kigali went, which we now, looking back, already consider very significant.
The calm and serenity of the Rwandans is distinct. It was not uncommon for appointments to be called ‘German time or ruandan time?’. And yes, it maybe true: ‘People in Germany have watches. The people in Rwanda have time. ‘It can happen that a meeting at nine o’clock quickly turns to eleven or that a complete wedding party just has to wait 45 minutes on the street because one of the cars was stopped by a bicycle race.
However, no one can be disturbed by such an incident. Stress is a rare thing in Rwanda.
Another striking characteristic of the Rwandans is the selfless willingness to provide help: Whether the taxi driver at the airport, the friendly field worker, who showed us all the way up the mountain (barefoot !!) or the entire population of Kabuga, who provided us with advice and assistance non-stop during our bridge building campaign (please read about it further down below).
The Rwandans these times are a happy people. This is immediately noticeable when you set foot on the (incredibly clean!) Streets of Kigalis or, strictly speaking, the whole of Rwanda. It doesn’t take long and a pickup with three young men and huge loudspeakers on the cargo area chugs past you, playing hiphop with African rhythms,. Even at the bus station or at various corners by the road-sides there are loudspeakers emitting music – just to sweeten the day.
The love for music and casual life is particularly evident on Friday evenings. Friday is THE day to go out in Rwanda. So you can find young and old in Kigalis bars and clubs. (At this point we would like to note that neither in a Mützig – nor a Skol beer possibly can be below 10% alcohol!)
Of course, life has not been just an easy party for us in the past few weeks. You have to get used to the foreign culture. Example required: it was sometimes difficult to correctly interpret other facial expressions and gestures or simply accept that the neighbor on the bus does not get tired of staring at you from a distance of 30 cm, even after two hours of bumpy driving.
Moving through the city here, it won’t be long before you hear the following: “Umuzunguuu !!” Translated, this means something like “different color”. Whether it’s pedestrians approaching you, cyclists who turn and almost fall or bus drivers who roar from the open window. Even after weeks it has no end.
It gets even more extreme in the countryside. On a seven-hour bus ride up north to the Ugandan border – in which due to the road conditions we covered not more than 143 km – we drove through many small villages and the landscape became more and more rural. At various stops, whole groups of residents gathered, some of whom were holding their babies up so that they could look at us Umuzungus. Kids sprinted as fast as they could from their mud huts and screamed the word on Kinyarwanda from the back of their throats, something we will never forget in our lives.
The Rwandan favorite food is rice, potatoes, potatoes, beans, rice and … did we mention the potatoes? These are served in a variety of ways – as differently as you can deep-fry a potato … Also with a meal in combination with rice and pasta. (Who is this low-carb ??) We particularly liked chapatis – a kind of pancake -, samozas – small dumplings filled with meat or potatoes – and last but not least the incredible amount of fresh fruit. (At this point we deny that we were ever on the brink of a nervous breakdown trying to keep track of things while shopping for fruit and vegetables on the local market.)
A final observation of Rwandan culture that should not remain unmentioned is belief and religion. You will find an incredible number of different religious associations and if it is not the music from the boxes that you hear on the streets, loud gospels and quires will find your ears well. Weddings last for several days and there is almost an endless number of ceremonies. Buses and bicycles are brightly painted and have inscriptions such as ‘God is king’ or ‘Jesus loves you’.
One could dedicate a very own text to driving in a public Rwandan bus. It is incredible to see this beauty while driving through the hilly landscape. There is a corridor to get to the rear seats. If these are full, additional seats are folded out. If one of the passengers in the back rows wants to get out, everyone who occupies a aisle seat has to get up and then the vacant seats are filled up again. There are no scheduled departure times. The bus takes off as soon as the last seat is occupied. Most bizarre we always found the payment process. For this you need a prepaid card, which you have to top up again and again and from which the respective price is debited before entry.
If you want to move faster or want to reach more specific places, you can take a “Moto” – a moped taxi. You will find these on every corner. However, such a ride is not for the faint of heart. It may happen that you find yourself rushing through the speed restricted zone with a backpack and a shopping bag on your lap at 80 km / h.
All in all, we were welcomed by culture that inspires amazement and from whose serenity, helpfulness and joie de vivre we could certainly cut one or two slices.

The center and the general workflow

After the first 4 days settling in in Kigali we were ready for our first day at the HDVC Center.

What exactly is the project and the center all about?

HDVC stands for ‘Help and self-help for disabled and vulnerable children’. It was launched in 2009 by Christine Mukeshimana – our host mother – and is aimed at children and their parents from the rural area of Kigalis and parts of the eastern province of Rwanda. Christine is a physiotherapist herself and after graduating she was certain that she wanted to work with children.

Families with mentally or physically handicapped children have found help and attention since 2009. Diseases such as ICP (infantile cerebral palsy) are usually not widely known here. The most common cause of children’s disabilities is general complications in childbirth due to a lack of medical expertise or lack of preventive care during pregnancy. Another point that should not be neglected is that illegitimate pregnancies are despised by local society and abortion is illegal. As a result, young and desperate women often resort to the most abominable means to end pregnancy. In the rarest of cases, this procedure is successful and new-borne childs suffer from permanent damage. In addition, there is usually no knowledge of a corresponding therapeutic option or even need for it, or the financial means are simply not sufficient to take the appropriate steps.

HDVC however does more. Children from the poorest backgrounds find a little support in the center. Christine’s work usually goes beyond the actual therapy. It ensures the sustainable supply of medication to children eg. with epilepsy. She does educational work on site to help mothers understand the need for regular therapy visits and schooling. She gives lectures on mental and physical disabilities and their therapeutic options. In doing so, she primarily tries to reach the rural regions.

However, her capacity in this regard is limited because she does this on a voluntary basis 3 mornings a week. In the afternoons and the rest of the days off, she works in a normal practice to make a living for her small family. From this, she also pays the costs of the center such as rent, electricity, medication, house guard, etc., – simply because it is a matter close to her heart.
The therapy and the lessons take place in a small house in a village just outside of Kigali – Kabuga. A house with 4 rooms – a small office room, a waiting room, a “gym” with 2 exercise mats and a classroom with a table and 2 chairs for the reception / the first contacts and especially for the education. As already mentioned, not all children go to school and especially the mentally impaired children cannot be integrated in the “normal” school. In order to provide them with a basic school education, a prospective teacher for special education works attends the center on a voluntary basis. The house is situted on an estate surrounded by self-structured garden. In the back of the house there is a small kitchenette and a toilet. Everything is taken care of by the house guard Vincent, who lives in another small room with his wife and newborn child.
A day in the center:

As described in the previous report ‘How we get to know Rwanda’, the sense of time in Rwanda is different. Many of the children have a long foot walk in front of them until they reach the center, sometimes even up to 2 hours. The first may arrive around 10 a.m., others can make it around half past 12. It is almost impossible to describe a simple daily routine, because there is no precise schedule and a specific treatment time. This is decided individually and depends, for example, on who comes first, how many children need to be treated that day and who has the longest way ahead of him back home. Christine gets an overview every day, because even who exactly comes on that day is not given. Before starting therapy, she roughly divides it into “physiotherapy treatment necessary”, “teaching needs by the prospective special education teacher”, a combination of both and “new patients”. The order which “group” she starts with is also decided individually, and this also depends on how many patients ultimately appear, whether the teacher is generally available for teaching, and much more. For each child, she has created a “patient document” with personal information, the medical history and a therapy goal. When contacting new children for the first time, such a document is created at the first appointment and an overall impression is noted. In another book, she documents at the end of the day who was on site for therapy, to whom she gave out which medication, and peculiarities occurred, if any. In general, it is fair to say that a typical day of therapy lasts from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Usually, the children are accompanied by their mothers, grandmothers or siblings, depending on who can take care. Most of them are unable to come on their own due to their mental or physical limitations, or are very simple still too young. The accompanying persons are an important part of the therapy and should, if possible, mainly carry out the exercises themselves under instruction. “Helping people to help themselves” is Christine’s vision. The therapy must ultimately take place at home in everyday life and in the familiar environment – where the children have to survive. The way to the center is often too difficult, or the need to care for the rest of the family at home is too great, so that it can happen that some children sometimes do not show up for therapy for weeks or months. It is all the more important to emphasize that Christine has been treating some of the children for more than 8 years – albeit with small interruptions in the course of the year due to the problems just mentioned, the rainy periods and storms that occur all of a sudden and can cause street chaos.
Christine tried very hard to give us an insight into everything from the beginning and on the first day – the “introduction day” she called it – introduced us to the medical histories of the children who were currently beeing treated. Nevertheless, we only noticed after the first 2 weeks that we became really able to do something independently in therapy. In the beginning we all 3 sat around a child and everyone did something. Certainly thought and implemented correctly, but not really effective because there was no targeted treatment structure and everyone took a different approach. So we decided that the work was not satisfactory in this way. The difficult thing was just the communication. We needed Christine to translate – at least that’s what we initially thought – so we couldn’t split the children up and treat them at the same time.
The third week came up and we were forced to work independently and without Christine’s help because she couldn’t find the time to attend the center for two days because of her brother’s upcoming wedding. No problem, – we were now familiar with all the medical histories and so we started off on our own: We carried out coordination exercises for the older boys on a course and put a focus on body awareness among the smaller ones. At the end of the day we were overwhelmed by what we saw and experienced. On the one hand, the excitement on the children´s faces, but also how difficult the supposedly simple coordination exercises for different types of running and step sizes were for them. On the other hand, the pure feeling of impending movements through facilitation, because no language was available. From that day on, we felt more comfortable, more independent and more effective at work.
To sum up, it generally takes time to understand and establish new structures. Especially in a foreign country, with different customs and supposedly no verbal communication options, it definitely takes more time. It is obviously not easy and it also requires patience and strong nerves in one situation or another. Nevertheless, you can take an incredible amount of experience with it and get to know yourself a little differently in dealing with people, but also in therapy as such or perhaps even at all as a beginner. As in any case, there are of course advantages and disadvantages of certain procedures and behaviors and since the work in the center shows some parallels to our usual therapy as we have learned for ourselves, there are also big differences with which we still not get along perfectly well. In addition to experiencing the therapy itself, from our first day in the center, a wealth of ideas has spread in our minds about what projects can be tackled at the center itself. We want to implement these in the weeks ahead …

We divided our ideas and visions into several larger and smaller projects already within the first days of our six-week stay in Rwanda.
Roughly, it can be said that we wanted to do some revitalisation or renovation work to the center facilities. In addition, we aimed to be able to financially support individual fates as well as the entire health care of the patients of the center. As the last big point, we decided to improve the organization of patient data and invoices, to make them more uniform and clearer.
It all started with the question of funding. We started writing reports about our work and the center, about Christine and her story. Challenges and difficulties that she had to find her way through over the past few years to prevent her project and the health care of the already disadvantaged children from expiring.
We sent these reports to our friends and families, to our school of physiotherapy and many more, with the ask for donations and for further sharing news about the project.
At the beginning we paid a lot out of our own pocket, but it didn’t take long to get the news from home. It was overwhelming to see how many were willing to donate. Whether small or bigger amounts – from well-paid individuals to those sharing from their first salary without batting an eyelid. It wasn’t long before we knew our vision could be put into practice. Now it was up to us.
The first project was to build a new bridge over the deep ditch to the center. The rainy season eats deep furrows between the street and the neighboring houses and it is almost impossible to get onto the property without a safe bridge – especially for physically or mentally impaired children. So far, a few boards have been cobbled together makeshiftly and the path was very dangerous.
Building bridges. Create new ways – the way forward.

After thorough research and planning on how to build a solid bridge in this often flooded area, we went to the material procurement.
What would have been dealt with in Germany by one or two visits to the next DIY store of choice – in Kabuga it became an almost endless undertaking on the market, on which, with the support of our host father Prosper, we covered as much distance as some did not in a whole week . At least that’s how it felt like as we walked more and more packed from one small shop to the next and back again. We had wooden slats cut to size, bought wire, nails, a hammer, searched for buckets and concrete and kept negotiating for the price, because the ‘last price’ can change every minute.
When the wood was cut, all 42 wooden slats were stretched onto the bicycle rack of Houseguards Vincent, who, as always, drove this construction to the center with indispensable motivation and helpfulness.
The next day we started our construction site. It has proven difficult as two white young women to prove to a bunch of male African experts that it would be possible to build a bridge („yes – with your own hands“) and even duely have structured the construction. Nonetheless – with combined forces, things went very well. With the support of our lovely roommate from Korea, of our host father and the entire population of Kabuga, the bridge began to take shape. It was probably the biggest event in weeks. Not only temporarily it was that at least twenty people stood around us, looked at us incredulously or gave loud advice on how to improve potential weaknesses. We have to admit, it was very strange to be the local center of attention. And yet it was never really unpleasant. Everyone was so heartily and not too bad to stop, take the hammer from Prosper’s hand, hammer in 64 nails and then say goodbye with a smile and continue on his way.

In the afternoon we finished and a two and a half meter wide, concrete – embedded bridge was there in front of us.
Litterally, the foundation was laid to allow further steps on a long journey.
The second major construction project was to be a painting campaign inside the center. Here the walls had previously been painted yellow and have since been touched with dirty children’s hands a thousand times. So far there had simply been no money for such a luxury item as wall design. For us, however, it was clear that a childlike and pleasant atmosphere contributes a large part to the well-being and fun of therapy – especially for the children.
We started cleaning the walls with brushes and water from the dirt that had accumulated in the past few years – and were amazed at what was washed off with the water.
Later we got lots of bright colors. At this point, we would like to spare you from explaining precisely the difficulties of finding wall paint that could not be washed off and was sold at an acceptable price. Also, that the delivery at half past eight, despite repeated insurance, became twelve o’clock, is simply a matter of course here.
Ultimately, we prepared everything. Painted meadows, blue skies, trees and animals on the walls to give the children a space where they could be children.
The next day, all mothers and children came together for the big painting campaign. Everyone got gloves and everyone who wanted to could live their own creativity in the designated areas. We heard loud music, danced and laughed while the center shone in ever more colorful colors.

In the end, each of the contributors immortalized themselves on the meadow with a handprint and became an even more integrated part of the center again.
In addition to these 2 big campaigns, we also carried out many smaller projects. So we prepared a warm lunch with the mothers several times using fresh ingredients. We didn’t have an equipped kitchen, just 2 open fireplaces in the back of the center. Everyone took on a task and in the end everyone sat happily together and ate the menue. Each time it became easier because everyone knew what to do and we became a well-coordinated team. At the end we prepared a dough with pieces of chocolate and made stick bread in the garden of the center, to the delight and astonishment of the mothers and children. We bought ‘soda’ (Fanta etc.) for everyone, hung up balloons and happily danced to loud music. Our little Christmas party was simply perfect – at 28 degrees in the shade.
Finally, we would like to mention the matter that is closest to our hearts. The center can look as nice as it wants and the cooking afternoons are also great – but actually – that is more of an addition.
If the financial situation is not sufficient to provide adequate health care for the children and adolescents sustainably, the center has missed its greatest mission.
It was core to us to take a close look at individual destinies in order to ensure that they could attend adequate schools or provide important medication through continuous financial support, this included inevitable surgeries.
But of course, this shouldn’t just be about individual cases. It is important to be able to accommodate a wide range of children with impairments. It was therefore important for us to continue to maintain the facility. We took care that past rent debts were paid, the house was supplied with electricity and the loyal house keeper received his long missed salary. Furthermore, our vision is to give a future perspective to single mothers who are desperate to finding a job themselves by training them to be used for the basic school education of the children.
In order to improve transparency to the work and organization in the center, we created folders in which the medical history, medication plan and any additional documents of the individual children were sorted in alphabetical order. A second folder was used for bills and other documents for the administration of the center. For therapy, we designed a stamp card for each child together with Christine, in order to make the continuity of the therapy visits visible for them too. This should also be a motivation for mothers and children. In addition, we installed a memo board in the main room of the center to give a rough overview of how many patients were to be expected on each day.
Now – six weeks later – it’s about sustainably securing the project in the long term. To see the successes so far only as a beginning and not to rest on them. In our next and last report we will review what other challenges we have to face on our journey …

In our last report we want to give an outlook on how to proceed and which challenges will have to be overcome in the future in order to guarantee a sustainable, long-term futue for the center. Let’s start reviewing what we’ve achieved so far. As you have gathered so far, in the past 6 weeks we were able to extend the basis of the existing HDVC-Kabuga project under the direction of Christine Mukeshimana, and more importantly we have started to stabilize it. All of this was only possible due to the numerous donations received in response to our newsletter at the very beginning of our time here in Rwanda. A huge thank you goes to all supporters! We have started to bring structure to the individual treatment day and continuity regarding the therapy visits. Especially in our last week we saw the motivation of the children and mothers, who happily presented their new stamping card at the end of each day, which they carefully and proudly stored into their pockets afterwards. We were particularly touched by the words of mothers and grandmothers, who in the short time have seen minor and major progress in the development of their children and themselves have already been able to learn a lot for their regular life. Christine’s motivation also seemed to blossom again. Almost as if, after receiving so much recognition for her work by the sympathy of our families and friends in Germany after all so many years, she seemed be driven again and strongly encouraged to continue.

We asked her about what she realizes as the biggest challenges in recent years and also in the near future. In the first place, of course, she mentions the lack of financial resources. Above all she refers to the poverty of her patients, who cannot pay the way to the responsible doctor or therapist, – not to mention the actual costs of the consultation and the following medical or therapeutic measures. Since there is no early treatment, the health threads grow steadily and the treatment options shrink at the same time. This core problem can be discussed for a long time, but now it is important to look to the future and to tackle solutions in small steps.

It is clear to us that we want to continue to support the project personally within the framework available to us. On the one hand we count on the continuous exchange with Christine about the current happenings in the center. On the other hand, we want to pass on the contact to as many as possible and spread the idea of the project further. It would be a huge success for us if volunteers continue to find their way to the center, or even on a regular basis fledgling physiotherapists (and also volunteers of any other profession or schools) provide support to Christine for a few months in Kabuga.

We have to build up the sustainability of the project from below and yet bith of us are absolutely inexperienced so far. There are, among other things, considerations to establish a dedicated non-profit association or to create cooperations with – for example – our former Koblenz school of physiotherapy or other institutions. To realize this, we have to sit down with the respective partners and try to implement the ideas collaboratively – as soon as we are back in Germany.

It is our challenge to support maintaining the revitalized structure of treatment and also the continuity of therapy for Christine and the children with their mothers from abroad. However, it is important to find a balance between the necessary structure and discipline and the local culture. In order to win long-term sponsors, it is important to be able to present the achievements in order to build-up trust in the project.

At the same time, we have to respect the local culture with all its characteristics and therefore we must not impose anything on anyone. Such cooperation will not work sustainably. We will have to create a mutual understanding oft he specific needs. Documentation of what has been achieved, supporting documents for money spent, for example, are necessary. At the same time, you have to be aware that in Rwanda things take more time than usual under German circumstances.

As mentioned in the previous reports, Christine is covering all costs fort he HDVC-center. But of course her financial resources are limited and without external donations or grants it always is an uphill struggle for her to maintain the center´s existence. Urgently required medication and examinations by specialists bare extra costs. It is therefore very important to us to inspire and to win long-term sponsorships for the project so that the center can plan ahead.

What we regard as an extra challenge is the donation funds to securely find their way to the donation targets. Above all, transparency of the cash flow must be ensured. If requested, receipts can be issued in Rwanda, but due to the lack of digitization you will mostly find handwritten documents in the national language Kinyarwanda. In this regard, we have already agreed with Christine to have future documents issued at least in French or English and, if possible, to record them digitally. The first step in the coming months is to file everything neatly in a specially created folder and send us a copy. We already have developed a few ideas to be worked out in Germany.

How important the presence of the HDVC center in Kabuga and the work of Christine and her team really is, has been illustrated by a recent study carried out by physiotherapy students from the University of Rwanda in April 2017. The first-time statistics on disability occurrence in the surrounding region confirms the relevance of appropriate therapy and the importance of the center. They visited 180 households and interviewed 796 people about mental and physical impairments / restrictions. In this small area, here it is called “Cell”, 13 children and 19 adults live with restrictions – equals to 4.02% of the total population.

Due to the lack of structures including the education system, those affected by disabilities cannot prevail on the education and labor market. Only centers such as the HDVC-Kabuga can provide a social net for those in need.

In the coming years, the study will be extended to other surrounding “cells” and to the next larger regional units, the Masaka sector and the Kicukiro district. The city of Kigali is divided into individual districts, which further on are divided into sectors and cells.

Finally, here is our appeal to you – to the fledgling professionals of all schools. Dare to make your own experiences! Spend time in identifying projects and get in touch with the contact person personally. Do not be persuaded by anyone who has not been able to earn any experience himself or has not yet visited the respective country. How many times have we heard that it would be far too dangerous for two white, blonde, young women to travel to a black African country on their own. And yet we never felt unsafe in Rwanda – not even a second. Insead, we were overwhelmed by the warmth, hospitality and helpfulness. We hope we were able to provide an insight into the work through our reports, far beyond the limits of your own comfort zone.

Thank you for your interest and inspiration!

Lea & Laura

weitere Erfahrungsberichte

5 weeks full of impressions come to an end Our time at the HDVC Kabuga in Rwanda / Africa Our trip started on Monday, November 4th, 2019, from Frankfurt via Istanbul to Kigali a full 10 hours journey. Christine, the head of the HDVC Kabuga project, welcomed us together with her entire family in the […]
Back home in Germany and looking back at the time we spent in Rwanda, we slowly realize of what experience we were blessed with abroad.
In January 2020 we traveled to Kigali, 6.203 km linear distance away from Koblenz. Impressions we were allowed to collect during our stay in the capital of Rwanda were overwhelming in so many ways. When we set off with a few donations in our luggage to actively support Christine Mukeshimana’s physiotherapy-oriented help-for-self-help project, we looked […]