Why has the new Committee committed to helping this school and why might you?
We have decided to support this school for the following reasons:
- Students like Angelique (please read her story below).
- We strongly believe in the country of Rwanda and its recent achievements. In just 20 years, they have put the horrific genocide behind them and have transformed the country into one of the cleanest, most educationally oriented and most economically progressive country on the African continent. They will be THE role model for Africa. Come see for yourself.
- We believe that professional trade schools provide the fastest path to full employment and economic development.
- The school buildings and infrastructure are already in place, meaning that most investments will be for upgrades, improvements and scholarships for needy students.
- The school director, the board and the teachers are all competent, open to learning new skills, and are fully supportive of the Committee efforts, and are actively implementing all new educational initiatives agreed upon.
- New learning technologies, teaching strategies and management training being provided by the Committee offer a real opportunity to make ETSK a top trade school in Rwanda. (A summary of these initiatives can be found under: New Initiatives.)
This is a manageable project that will be successful. It is also very rewarding to us personally. Our support will involve 3-4 visits per year to monitor existing programs, to help train the staff on planning and management, and to help develop ongoing improvements.
We’re all very excited about this project to expand education at ETSK and are very pleased with the results we have already seen in a very short period of time.
– Rick Jay, Sue Sawyer, Giuseppe Braghieri, Laura Massarenti, Jeanette Gahongayire, Alexie Nkurunziza, Massimo Giuggioli – ETSK Committee for Education Expansion
This is the compelling, yet typical story about one of our students that graduated from ETSK. She is a success story of someone that survived and overcame incredible obstacles to get an education. Her name is Angelique, born in 1995, who is now a wonderful, lovely and intelligent woman.
She does not know how old she was or why she was abandoned by her family in this very poor area of Rwanda. She was taken in by a local family, but unfortunately they treated her like a real slave. She went to primary school only because it is required by law. At twelve years of age, she met another little girl who told her about father Herman and the Hameau Village.
Her friend accompanied her to visit father Herman, to whom she told her story. When he heard her story, he said you must come and be a part of our family at the Hameau with 400 other children. So she went to live there and it is only real home she has ever known. Angelique then went to the local middle school while living and being supported by the Hameau.
She attended the first two years at another high school because St. Kizito at that time was just a middle school. Her last two years were spent at ETSK. With the love and the support of the Hameau, she graduated, passing the National exams. She is now studying computer science at the University.
She travels to and from the university, five hours each way via typical, private Rwandan mini-bus, carrying her own mattress and all her other necessities. She comes home to the Hameau every vacation and works by helping with the little children, cooking in the kitchen, serving guests at the table, cleaning rooms and doing laundry. Plus, she gets up at 5 o’clock in the morning to work on the farm of the Hameau, along with everyone who lives in Hameau village.
She does everything with a big smile and feels so fortunate.
Her goal is to finish the University in computer science and then go on for an advanced degree, also in computer science. She wants to keep increasing her knowledge in lots of areas that she realizes she is missing. She thinks ETSK is a wonderful school that gave her a good education, and was very stimulated by the teachers, and most graduates have the chance to go on to university.
We know she will be big success because she is a very determined and hard-working woman. She is a wonderful example and role model for all the other young girls living at the Hameau.
She feels so much love for Father Herman and all the people that have contributed to her emotional and financial support.