Posts Tagged ‘Rwanda’

10 Facts You Didn’t Know About Idjwi Island

Tuesday, November 5th, 2019

By William Hurtado

An aerial map showing Idjwi Island and the surrounding area.“Africans, we are lucky.”Jacques Sebisaho, MD, speaking at a Ted Talk, continues; “We have other creative minds that are focusing their efforts, wealth, and education to make our continent a better world. We are grateful to have them help us.”

Jacques is from one of the remotest places in Africa: Idjwi island on Lake Kivu between the Democratic Republic of Congo and Rwanda. The Patmos Children’s Village is located there and is home to 164 orphans supported by contributors like you.

While neighboring countries have endured wars and violence, Idjwi has remained a peaceful oasis for around 260,000 people. But when Sebisaho returned to Idjwi, he was shattered by what he saw and called “a forgotten place.”

Idjwi Island, the size of Atlanta, GA or Portland, OR has no electricity except through generators and solar panels, and much of the island lacks potable drinking water and paved roads.

As Sebisaho built a hospital on Idjwi to help relieve his people’s medical needs, he realized that helping Africans is more than financial. It is partnering with the right organizations who help natives maximize their own strength and creativity.

In his Ted Talk Sebisaho concluded, “today, I would like to introduce to you the less known creative minds that are also solving Africa’s problems. The women, the pygmies, and children. These are the people I know. While they are grateful for all of the great minds, all of the wealthy and educated people who are focusing on Africa, they are in themselves a powerful solution to their problems.” When their creativity is empowered, there are no limits.

A photo of Munaneza while he was living at the Patmos Children's Village on Idjwi IslandAnd that, ICC ministry partner, is what you do every time you support ICC’s children. Whether it be in Africa, Central America, or a country in between, every dollar you give translates to empowerment for a once-orphaned child. Through your faithful gifts, you give children, like Munyaneza, a new life.

Recently, I connected with Munyaneza Louis from the D.R. Congo. He says, “l’m at Patmos on Idjwi Island now. God is our protector.”

Munyaneza was taken to the Patmos Children’s Village after he lost his parents in an accident.

There he was cared for and given the opportunity to become educated. Even though the old school building at Patmos needed serious updating, the children still received an education that helped Munyaneza eventually become a nurse.

A photo of Munyaneza while he was training to become a nurseThis year Munyaneza finished nurses training and is ready to help people in his country. He is giving back. Through people like you, he is achieving so much! What he recently wrote to me he writes to you. “I’m your child.”

Munyaneza is one of many stories of children growing up into Christ-likeness from the 41 years of faithful giving from donors like you. You make stories like this possible!
You make an eternal difference in the lives of children. The investments of money and time you make are considered “pure and undefiled religion” by our Heavenly Father.

Thank you so much for taking the time to be His hands and feet. It is true — Your gifts save and empower lives!

P.S. Were you able to find 10 interesting facts about Idjwi Island? Try sharing them with a friend! You never know, through your encouragement and their new support, all of us may be hugging more children in Heaven soon.

Congo Update — Spring/Summer 2014

Friday, June 27th, 2014

150 children
8 University / Vocational Students
8 homes / 11 families

A photo of ICC’s Patmos Children’s Village with Lake Kivu in the background

Project Contact
Communication is very difficult between this project and the outside world. Even when ICC’s children’s services personnel try to call, their conversations are often cut short due to poor phone communication and internet connections. It is difficult to discuss all topics from either end.

Email communication is challenging when working through issues. There is nothing like sitting face-to-face. Rick and Sharon Fleck plan to take a trip to Congo later this year. If they can’t go into Congo for some reason, they will meet with the key personnel in Rwanda for a week.

Project Staff
The project has a new children’s service director. She seems to be doing a great job. The progress reports indicate that the children have experienced many positive changes. This could also be partially due to the presence of a psychologist who is working with the children’s services director.

Education
The children are growing up. A majority of them are in secondary school which has caused an increase in the education costs. They have a European style of education where students start specializing in the areas that they will be studying in university. This project is not able to offer all the different streams of study at the campus school, so some of the students have to go to other schools to continue their education. Funding for education is one of the greatest needs at this project.

Desire, the project administrator is encouraging the students to study for different specialties so that eventually they will be able to help our program with their education. They may also be able to help in an area that will provide funds for the project. It is a wonderful concept.

A photo of the secondary school at ICC’s Patmos Children’s Village with Lake Kivu in the background

Construction and Development
Construction continues on the secondary school. An additional amount of about $22,000 (€16,176) is needed to complete this important project.

Work continues on completing house #9 so that the new children will have a home to live in.

The Patmos children’s village also is in need of staff housing. Current facilities are not adequate or appropriate to for administrative and support staff.

Doug Congleton and Joel Reyes placing the special message that was included with the container ICC shipped to the Patmos Children’s Village

Container
In February, ICC US sent a container of much needed supplies. As of the end of June, 2014, it had arrived in Rwanda is the process of getting it out of customs is underway.

Help Urgently Needed In Congo

Monday, May 21st, 2012

We’ve been receiving disturbing news for the past several weeks from our staff at our Patmos Children’s Village in the DR Congo. It seems that once again regional civil war has resumed near our project. What you read here reflects the most recent information we have received from our staff in the DR Congo.

A number of officers from the Congolese army have recently joined with, or started their own, rebel paramilitary organizations to oppose the current government of the DR Congo after it was announced by the president of the DR Congo that one rebel commander in particular should be arrested for ‘crimes against humanity.’

The fighting between this rebel commander, his supporters and the Congolese army has reached the city of Goma approximately 40 miles from our children’s village. Over 20,000 refugees from the surrounding territories have fled into Goma or across the border into Rwanda to escape the fighting. In some cases entire villages have been deserted as the occupants flee the conflict.

Worse yet, children are once again being recruited or conscripted to fight for the rebel warlords. Young men of high school and college age are especially being targeted for conscription into the rebel armies.

Our children and young people studying in Goma and at nearby universities as well as our staff in Goma have returned to the children’s village on the island of Idjwi where it is relatively safe. Predictably this has put a significant strain on our budget and supplies at Patmos.

Prices for food and fuel have nearly doubled in a few short weeks and many stores have closed because all staples have become increasingly scarce or simply unavailable. Demand has also increased because farmers are abandoning their fields and farms to escape the fighting and the population of refugees flooding into Goma is swelling dramatically on a daily and sometimes hourly basis.

Frankly we need your immediate help and assistance to deal with this unstable situation. It is vital that we do our best to collect three months worth of supplies at the Patmos Children’s Village so we can weather this storm as we care for our children. Without  your help the future is very uncertain.

Please contact ICC at (800) 422-7729 to make a contribution or use this link — Congo Emergency Supplies Fund — to make a secure online donation at our website. When you donate online be sure to write, “Congo Emergency Supplies” in the description box.

Thanks for much for all you do for “His Kids!”

Ken Wilson
Media Director ICC