Association Mwana Ukundwa

Association Mwana Ukundwa

About

Association Mwana Ukundwa (AMU) is a non-profit Christian organization. It was created on 19 March 1995 to help orphans of the 1994 war and genocide. At its inception, AMU's mission was "to contribute to the socioeconomic reintegration of children at risk, more particularly orphans, and to reinforce more capacity of children in foster families." AMU is convinced that instead of giving fish to people, it is better teach them how to fish. Therefore, the need to provide knowledge, skills and capacity to needy children so that they may take care of themselves and become professionally capable, responsible and balanced adults. Over time, AMU expanded efforts to provide for families affected by HIV/AIDS.

Association Mwana Ukundwa was registered in the Rwandan Ministry of Justice on 31 July 1997 and the Rwandan government recognized her legal personality in 2001.

History

Mwana Ukundwa Association, "Beloved Child Association", was founded by Mrs Mukankaka Rose, shortly after the 1994 Genocide in Rwanda. Mrs. Mukankaka is presently the coordinator of the Association. Mrs. Rose, with her immediate family, survived the genocide. During genocide, Mrs. Rose and her family lived in the South Province, formerly Butare. The family had moved to that area one year before genocide as her husband was serving God as Pastor in the town of Butare. According to Mrs. Rose, "Genocide started when I was at home with my children, my husband was away in Western Province where there was a conference of pastors. People were being killed in Kigali; we could hear about it on radio and television. It was very hard, and I started to think about taking my children to Burundi. But it was not also easy because there were many roadblocks. Even just outside of our gate at home there was one. I did not know what to do, I called my husband to ask him what to do. He told many people were being killed where he was attending the conference. I prayed, God promised me to protect my family. God fulfilled his promises; we stayed in our house as we could not go out from 6/04/1994, until 05/07/1994. My husband got at home on 16th/04/1994. It was a miracle for him to be able to reach home. We spent three months in our house with our seven children, two children of my brother and two house helpers. It was a big family but God protected us miraculously. When we were in our house during that hard time, hearing guns, seeing the houses burning, people being killed, without being able to flee, as our identity card showed our ethnicity as Tutsi; I made this vow: 'God if you protect me, my family and everyone who is in this house, and if one day we will be able to get out of this house alive, I will serve you.' I did not know what I would do, because I could not imagine that there would be a time when people could do anything differently. I remember one day one of our children said 'this is the end of the world that we have been told.' It was very hard, but God helped us and genocide stopped, and we could then get out of the house. I remembered the vow I had made to God, and in my heart I was convinced that I should fulfil what I had promised. There were a lot of children in the streets who had lost their parents during Genocide. I felt I had to approach and support them even though I did not what to do for them. But I believed that the God who had protected my family would also provide for them. God did, and I started with 40 children, finding foster families for them. The Association continued to grow and now we support 2016 children and young people. I started at home as I did not have an office, but now we are working in three provinces of Rwanda: Kigali, South and West. At first, I did not have staff to help me, now we have 19 staff. We did not have people to support our projects, now we have a number of organisations and individuals that support the Association such as: - Stromme Foundation (Norway) - TEARFUND (U.K) - ICCO-kerk in actie (Holland) - Haslet Community Church ( U.S.A.) - ONTWOKKELING (Belgium) - WHITE HORSE MINISTRY (USA) - Inter-Mission (Suisse)- Diaconie (Holland) We are so thankful to all of them."